The controversy continues to swirl over Keith Olbermann’s suspension by MSNBC after it emerged that he had contributed to three Democratic candidates running in the 2010 mid-term elections, one who he interviewed extensively on his show. In many instances, criticism of MSNBC has united left (who support Olbermann and feel it was self-evident that he had political positions and point to Republicans who have given money to candidates as well) and right (who defend Olbermann’s right to give money to candidates as a matter of principle, just as they have defended those on the right, Rupert Murdoch and Fox News for contributing to like-minded politicos). MSNBC’s Rachael Maddow had her own special comment. And then some have been critical.
Various reports speculate that a)Olbermann many not wish to return or b)MSNBC may not be able to get him back or want him back in the end or c)this is about MSNBC doing a bit of work on its branding.
Could we see a show on Fox: Hannity & Olbermann? (Just asking).
According to one new report, Olbermann was booted off the air after he refused to deliver an on camera mea culpa. This would fit in with a host of articles over the past year that point to Olbermann as one of MSNBC’s more difficult and assertive talents. So the issue here may also involve basic employee-management issues as well.
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Joe Gandelman is a former fulltime journalist who freelanced in India, Spain, Bangladesh and Cypress writing for publications such as the Christian Science Monitor and Newsweek. He also did radio reports from Madrid for NPR’s All Things Considered. He has worked on two U.S. newspapers and quit the news biz in 1990 to go into entertainment. He also has written for The Week and several online publications, did a column for Cagle Cartoons Syndicate and has appeared on CNN.