Monday, March 23, 2009

EdTV? MSNBC/Schultz rumors persist

This rumor has floated for quite a while, and still won't die. The New York Times makes it seem as there has been some continued activity on this front behind closed doors. The Times account cites an unnamed source from last Friday, so this new blurb doesn't seem to be part of any kind of echo chamber ripple effect.

From The Times:

MSNBC is in talks with Ed Schultz, the progressive radio talk-show host, about a permanent position, a source with knowledge of the negotiations said on Friday. The source requested anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss the network’s deal-making. MSNBC, which has become well known for its liberal-leaning prime-time lineup, is seeking a 10 p.m. host to replace the time slot’s repeat of “Countdown With Keith Olbermann.” Mr. Schultz has been a guest host on MSNBC twice this month, leading to speculation that he was in the running for a position...

...Mr. Schultz did not reply to an e-mail message Friday evening. An MSNBC spokeswoman said a contract had not been offered to Mr. Schultz and declined to comment further.

Speaking of MSNBC, the network has replaced its early morning newscast "First Look" with a re-air of "The Rachel Maddow Show", according to TVNewser.

"First Look," which aired at 5A ET, often re-purposed stories from NBC's "Early Today" which airs at 4:30A in many markets, leading in to NBC affiliate morning shows. TVNewser quotes an insider as claiming the purpose of the move "is to give "Morning Joe" the best lead-in possible."

And in a clever method of segueing smoothly from one topic to another, Rolling Stone magazine has ranked Maddow #22 on its "RS100: Agents Of Change." Congrats!


Mim Song said...

I still think Ed is a boring blowhard, esp. compared with Olbermann and Maddow. Why not put Maron/Seder at 10? It would draw the folks who want politics and humor, even though they'd switch away at 11 to Comedy Central for Stewart and Colbert. I know it'd make *my* viewing evening an informative pleasure!

Jill said...

Mim, on the one hand I'd love to see the kind of show that Break Room Live is becoming given a chance on real TV. But I don't think MSNBC is the place for it, as much as I'd love to see Marc and Sam get a gig that befits their talents. They're so much better uncensored, I'd rather see HBO or Showtime take them on. OR, though I'd hate to break up the band, a joint effort with Sam Seder and Cenk Uygur would probably be less gonzo and more to MSNBC's liking...with Maron as a roving correspondent, much like what he did with the Guardian during the campaign. He's a natural in the Charles Kuralt role.

Ann said...

I have listened to Ed on radio for years and now watch him on TV. I think he his wonderful on TV; excellent presence, well prepared, intelligent and well-mannered. He knows how to monitor a discussion without taking over for himself. I rate him an A+

FSL said...

Personal preference is personal.

Some people may like Mark and Sam but they have had their turns at bat and they just didn't draw enough fans. Big Ed is not my cup of tea but he does get listeners and that's the name of the game.

I'd like to see MSNBC lose Wingnut Joe. I'm sorry they didn't pick up Steph for the morning slot. I thought she worked well there during the week she was on and certainly she fits the line-up they are building now.

No point in shedding tears over Air America or any local lib-talk station flipping to business, sports or whatever. Much better to have a progressive talk cable news channel.

Jill said...

FSL, it's a bit disingenuous to say that Marc and Sam have had their turn and didn't draw enough fans. It takes a fair while to build a fan base -- longer than the 2 years that Morning Sedition was on (and that show's entire fan base has remained largely intact), and longer than it's possible to do when you move a personality around the way AAR did with Sam Seder.

Both of these guys have a listener/viewer base that is "sticky" -- and that's the kind of audience you want -- not just drive-bys who then flip around to something else.

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