Keith Olbermann, who just got fired from Al Gore’s Current TV, has indicated he’s going to sue for breach of contract. What a frigging moron-you’ve already made Ten Million bucks on a Fifty Million dollar contract,( What the hell was Gore thinking anyway?), for what someone has figured out amounted to it costing Current TV $56 bucks a viewer. Doesn’t seem like a good business model to me, but I don’t know what counts as a good business model in the Progressive world view.
The arguments escalated for months, with Olbermann directly appealing to the former vice president on three or four occasions, until relations had become so poisoned that, on Friday, Current fired Olbermann for breach of contract. He has vowed to take the matter to court and questioned the ethics of [Al] Gore and [Joel] Hyatt.
Some of the disputes are fundamental—such as missing days of work—and some sound petty, but they add up to a portrait of a dysfunctional alliance that was doomed from the start. Where Current management viewed Olbermann as a chronic complainer who had clashed with the bosses before leaving his previous jobs at MSNBC and ESPN, the liberal commentator came to believe that he had joined a rinky-dink operation, even if the channel was committed to paying him $50 million over five years.
Of course, both points of view are arguably true: Olbermann is a chronic complainer and Current TV is a rinky-dink operation.
It is also true, however, that communicating by e-mail is a poor substitute for sitting down face-to-face to discuss a problem. Even a phone call is a more humane means of communication. So the very fact that the “relationship” turned into a series of back-and-forth e-mails between network executives and Olbermann’s manager was probably a big part of the problem.
Also, as several people have pointed out, Olbermann’s status at Current seemed to go downhill once the network hired former CNN executive David Bohrman as their new president. That may be coincidental, or maybe not. If Olbermann was used to dealing directly with Gore and Hyatt, and suddenly he had to deal with Bohrman as the go-between, you could see how that might lead to trouble.
It stands to reason that e-mails aren’t the best form of communication…person to person is always best, especially in situations like these where one side or the other feels like their argument isn’t getting the attention they feel it deserves.
And lets face it, when I heard that Al ” I invented the internet” Gore had started his own television network, i thought to my self… I wonder what the programming is going to be on that network?
But I guess Olbermann is only human, (although there is still some doubt about that), and I reckon that if a person gets used to dealing with the top echelon of an organization and then is suddenly told that from now on, you have to deal with this other guy because we don’t have time to address your petty concerns, well, one can see where the hissy fit might come into play.
I sure do hope Olbermann has a good lawyer because from all accounts, he doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of winning this law suit.