Tuesday, February 8, 2011
He Gacked On It!: Did Keith Olbermann Drop The Ball On Journalism?
According to the New York Times Keith Olbermann, of former ESPN and MSNBC fame, has reportedly signed with Current TV and will announce it later today. Current TV is a struggling fledgling network founded in part by former Vice-President Al Gore.
As part of his roughly $7 million settlement with MSNBC, the anchor signed a non-compete agreement that keeps him off rival television networks for several months. The agreement applies only to specific competitors in cable news and broadcast news not to independent Current TV.
Current TV may seem to be autonomous with its self-supporting ownership by Al Gore and his not so often mentioned partner Joel Hyatt.
But Mr. Hyatt is a board member of The Brookings Institute, which receives a large part of its funds from Bank of America, ExxonMobil, and the governments of the United States, Japan, Qatar, Taipei, the District of Columbia, and the United Kingdom. He is also a board member at Hewlitt Packard.
Mr. Gore has become the green billionaire and sits on the board of Apple, and don’t forget his investment fund with David Blood, the former head Goldman Sachs’s asset management firm.
Not exactly a pair that I would consider free of corporate influence, not to mention the innumerable links to the political world these men have.
But now is the time for a good man to come to the aid of his country.
At present the fact that AOL has bought the Huffington Post has created a gap in the independent media area. The same five conglomerates own most media outlets. Olbermnn himself even recently Tweeted:
“Am I missing something or has the primary appeal of The Huffington Post been its independence from big $ media?”
So now is the golden opportunity for Mr. Olbermann to step up and fill that roll. Sometime in late January someone (presumably Mr. Olbermann) registered the domain name theolbermannshow.com, this would be the perfect venue to launch the newborn Olbermann Post (or something with a more creative name). Hundreds of thousands signed the online petition to get him back on the air following his short suspension at MSNBC, so you know he has a built in and very large fan base. The Huffington Post was started with only a million dollar investment, we know you’re good for it Keith, I will help you fundraise it myself if need be.
Just please Keith say it ain’t so, back out of Al Gores offer and come restore journalism to the proud institution it can be, practice as you always preached. Good night and good luck.