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I've been sadly lax in my Keith-watching routine the past few days. We were on the road last weekend and our son's wedding is this coming weekend. With relatives coming into town, we've been a bit more focused on cleaning and organizing, than on watching television. So, in advance of the Big Day, some random thoughts on All-Things-Keith.
First, allow me to thank all of you who jumped into the comments on my last post about whether Keith is a "journalist". I'm amazed at the venom that flows from some of you! You're just downright cantankerous ! But, all debate is good debate. So, keep 'em comin'. And, keep things somewhat civil, if you will.
Now, I understand The Big "O" is set to slide from "News Journalist" over to "Sports Journalist". Again. More power to him. If they guy doesn't need to sleep, so be it! NBC's "Football Night in America" will be better because of Keith. He knows his sports. He's learned how to "push the envelope" and I predict he has the green light to be outspoken. You won't see any Don Imus moments, but you will see something fun. Heck, it's Sunday night and you need a break. However, I know most of you folks won't be able to stomach another hour of KO, so I'll be watching for you! I'm betting we don't have a whole lot of football fanatics among the rabid anti-Olbermann faction around here, do we?
Here's the basic question for you: What the heck difference does it make if Olbermann sits with a couple of other sports nuts on Sunday night and talks about football? I sense that some of you are just downright frightened that Keith is getting so much exposure. There is, after all, a philosophy that says exposure in broadcasting breeds popularity and that could translate into ratings. Why do you think O'Reilly does both radio and TV? Why does Hannity do both? For the same reason Keith still does the radio gig. There are people who listen to that, who might grow to appreciate Keith and end up watching the TV show. Football offers the same potential, multiplied.
True, he may have an ego. That may be part of it. But, I'm betting the exposure is the main reason. His bosses realized that and asked him to do it. Keith is smart enough to know an opportunity when he sees it.
And, in case you believe otherwise, allow me to say that sports and news are not mutually exclusive. Neither are television and radio. I've been guilty of going for the cross-platform "exposure" myself. When I was doing TV News, I jumped at every chance I had to do talk radio. At one point, I was anchoring the 6 & 10 pm newscasts on TV and running into do morning drive for a local radio talk station at 6 in the morning. Burning the proverbial "candle at both ends", that's true. But it was good for both positions. And, I discovered that I could touch topics via the radio gig that would have been risky on TV and I could let my personal opinions enter into the conversations, without jeopardizing the TV reputation. I'd do it, again, in a heartbeat. And, yes, that is a bit of ego talking! In fact, my wife will tell you that I was as excited as a 14 year old going on a first date when I was invited as a guest on a weekend talk show on Sirius Satellite Radio not long ago. Yes, it's ego. And feeling I have something to contribute.
Some latitude , if you will, for Mr. Olbermann. The iron is hot. It's time for him to strike.
Oh, since I'll be pretty much out of pocket for a few days, here's something else to feed the fires: For all of you who find your collective heads exploding because Keith slants his presentation on Countdown, consider the following as my "proof" that Fox does the same. Just a bit more obnoxiously.
You're welcome to watch the piece here. And, yes, it IS just as bad as they say. "Fair and balanced" Pfffft.