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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Calderone’

The Media Divide: Who’s Keeping up with the Joneses?

Politico’s Michael Calderone and Mike Allen take an in-depth look at how the news these days looks different depending on where you watch.

From birthers to tea parties to town halls and – not to mention President Obama’s speech last week to school children and the background of former White House aide Van Jones – issues initially dismissed or missed entirely by the national media have burst, if only fleetingly, onto the national agenda after relentless coverage on Fox News, talk radio and in the blogosphere.

The most recent case of the divide between the right and the so-called mainstream media came yesterday when “World News” anchor Charles Gibson was caught off guard when asked about the ACORN tapes while on a Chicago radio show. Gibson added that “maybe this is just one you leave to the cables.”

“World News” EP Jon Banner tells Politico, “It’s a very different editorial process when you have 24 hours to fill as opposed to 22 minutes,” Banner said, explaining why the show hadn’t reported on the recent ACORN revelations.

“There’s no ideological filter that goes on,” says Chris Isham, Washington bureau chief for CBS News on his network’s coverage. “If it’s a good story, it’s a good story.”

“Clearly, Fox is going to be more aggressive on a story like that, initially, then other media organizations,” Isham says.

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Morning Media Menu: Politico’s Calderone on Sen. Kennedy

Today on the Morning Media Menu, staff writer Michael Calderone talked about the passing of Senator Edward M. Kennedy as well as Kennedy’s legacy and how the news media covered him.

You can also go here to listen to the whole show, which was hosted by GalleyCat editor Jason Boog and AgencySpy editor Matt Van Hoven. You can listen to all the past podcasts at Blog Talk Radio or download episodes for free on iTunes.

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Health Care Bad for Ratings?

Health care may be a top priority for the current administration, but apparently it isn’t for TV viewers. Politico’s Michael Calderone writes about the struggle President Barack Obama and the news media as a whole face with the majority of television viewers. Take, for instance, the president’s press conference last Wednesday evening:

It’s not as if the public ignored Obama entirely as he took questions in the East Room on Wednesday night. Indeed, 24.5 million viewers tuned in across the broadcast and cable networks. Still, that tally was the smallest prime-time audience of Obama’s presidency, dropping 50 percent from five months ago. And Fox’s decision not to air the presser paid off: The network won the 8 p.m. time slot with an episode of “So You Think You Can Dance.”

While most people—from media professionals down to the average viewer or reader—agree on the gravity of the issue, it seems health care can be complicated for pretty much everyone involved. CNBC’s John Harwood puts it this way, “It’s not only not a cable TV-friendly story; it’s not a journalism-friendly story…It’s incredibly complex to try and explain to people.” A health care solution was often listed as a top three issue for voters during last year’s presidential election, but maybe we’re finding that viewers are simply difficult to engage as that solution is developed.

Remainder of Sanford Emails Released

More Sanford emails! Earlier this week, we took a look at a few of the emails sent to Gov. Mark Sanford‘s communications director, including ones sent by ABC’s Jake Tapper.

Yesterday, more of the over 500 emails have been released and Politico’s Michael Calderone has combed through some of them. Especially of note are the messages from Sunday show hosts offering forums of varying civility: CNN’s John King says he has “as sane a place as there is (I think!) in my crazy business.” ABC’s George Stephanopoulos offers a “civil forum to address this week’s events.” And NBC’s David Gregory claims Sanford will get “a fair shake from me.”

MSNBC’s David Shuster wins for sending the email that was probably the most direct:

My producers want us to do a short reader on this at $4:30pm. Have you seen the Governor since last thursday? Dis he have plans for the weekend? Anything unusual about this? The first lady doesn’t know where he is?

Let me know… I’d be happy to kill this story.


Can Ed Schultz Improve MSNBC’s 6pm Ratings?

schultz_5-13.jpgThat is the question raised by Politico’s Michael Calderone today, who profiled MSNBC’s Ed Schultz.

MSNBC president Phil Griffin describes the switch from David Shuster to Schultz. “I think doing the kind of program Shuster was doing wasn’t the right fit for that hour,” Griffin said. “I think you need a big personality to drive that hour, to compete.”

Mark Jurkowitz of the Project for Excellence in Journalism says the network “doubled down” on a liberal lineup with Schultz’ hiring, and former MSNBC anchor Dan Abrams calls it “a really smart move,” because “his tone, topics and worldview are consistent with the rest of MSNBC’s prime time.”

So far in Schultz’ first full month, MSNBC has improved 9% in Total Viewers from the prior month and 15% year-to-year. But the show is still in 3rd place. Says Schultz: “I’ve been in the arena of what MSNBC focuses on, and that’s independent progressive.”

What Will Roland Martin Mean For “No Bias, No Bull”?

martin_2-26.jpgYesterday we reported CNN political contributor Roland Martin will be filling in for eight weeks while Campbell Brown goes on maternity leave in April. But can Martin, who supported Barack Obama during the presidential election and also both Bushes during their presidential runs, continue the “No Bias, No Bull” mantra of CNN at 8pmET?

Yesterday, in a story about February ratings, network president Jon Klein told the AP, “Look at Campbell Brown’s show. It is all about delivering the dose of common sense and clear thinking that is necessary for a time like this, and we don’t mean clear thinking as a euphemism for our way of thinking or ideology.”

After the news about Martin’s appointment yesterday, Politico’s Michael Calderone wrote about a CNN staffer who, “said a couple weeks back that they didn’t expect Martin because he’s regarded as a partisan, while Brown’s show is billed as a non-partisan alternative to her 8pm competitors, Keith Olbermann and Bill O’Reilly.”

A CNN spokesperson put it this way to TVNewser: “Can Roland Martin — who has been a journalist for 20 years and has supported both democrats and republicans — offer common sense and a broad range of opinions when he subs for Campbell for a couple of months? Yes — watch the show in April.”

Olbermann Names Calderone “Worse Person” For “Oh God” Post

Politico’s Michael Calderone made the “Worst Persons” list last night due to his initial report about the “oh God” comment on MSNBC. “Mr. Calderone, you guessed, you guessed wrong, you pretended you got it right, and you owe me an apology,” said Olbermann. Within two hours, Calderone responded. “Olbermann is incorrect to say that I ‘pretended’ to get it right the entire time,” wrote Calderone. “It’s all very transparent, laid out in a few updates, as the story progressed…However, I’ll apologize to Olbermann for initially pointing the finger at him without having it confirmed.”:

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After naming his fellow NBCU’er Rick Santelli a “worst person” on Friday, Santelli was back as part of Olbermann’s Tuesday list, in relation to his appearance on G. Gordon Liddy‘s radio show. “A rant, disconnected from the reality of most Americans,” said Olbermann of Santelli’s comments last week. Click continued to see the segment, and the “15 minutes of fame” Olbermann designated for the CNBC correspondent…

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Tapper to Gibbs: Obama “Doesn’t Believe in Transparency?”

Politico’s Michael Calderone highlights a contentious exchange between press secretary Robert Gibbs and ABC News’ Jake Tapper at the White House press briefing today as the discussion moved to transparency:


Glenn Beck’s First Guest: Sarah Palin

beck_1-15.jpgGlenn Beck‘s 5pmET Fox News program premieres on Monday, and Politico’s Michael Calderone reports his first guest is already set: Gov. Sarah Palin.

Palin has been in the news recently for her scathing critique of the media in an upcoming conservative documentary.

FNC tells us the interview will be live, and Palin will appear via satellite from Alaska.

Although it will be Beck’s first FNC interview, Palin has appeared on his Headline News program before — in June 2008.

Click continued to see Palin’s appearance on Beck’s HLN show…

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Obama Meets With Conservatives (And Liberals) Ahead Of Inauguration

kudlow_1-14.jpgLarry Kudlow revealed a few details this morning on “The Call” about the off-the-record meeting last night between President-elect Barack Obama and many prominent conservatives held at ABC News contributor George Will‘s house.

“This was a good conservative group, and we just had a great back and forth,” he said. “And he wants to keep the dialogue going with conservatives.”

Also at the dinner were Peggy Noonan, Paul Gigot and FNC contributors Bill Kristol and Charles Krauthammer. “He is charming, he is terribly smart, bright, well-informed, he has a great sense of humor,” said Kudlow.

Meanwhile Politico’s Michael Calderone writes about a meeting today between Obama and liberal commentators. MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow was among those in attendance.