Deggans Pundit frenzy: Talking Olbermann and NPR with WUSF, WMNF and Tom Joyner
His actual audience was less than half the size of his biggest competitor, but Keith Olbermann drew massive media interest once he left MSNBC.
I actually got a call from a CNN booker at 7 a.m. Saturday, hoping I'd be up for a morning appearance to talk about his last show hours before. (Sadly, family commitments and a deep need to sleep a few more hours on a weekend day kept me from helping out.)
But I did do three separate media interviews on Monday -- a day when I was also figuring out a media story on coverage of the shooting deaths of two St. Petersburg police officers -- on Olbermann's exit and the challenges facing public broadcasting in the post-Juan Williams era.
Now that I have a moment or two, here's links to those interviews. The first, which aired at 7 a.m. Monday, was an appearance on the syndicated Tom Joyner Morning Show -- an institution in the black community. I've met Tom a few times now -- I appeared with him on a panel about media in Chicago a few years ago -- but this was the first time I'd been on his show.
Contributor Roland Martin and I talked about the need for more diversity on cable TV news, then a story surfaces that Martin may be in consideration for the 6 p.m. slot on MSNBC. Do I have that much power? (joke)
I also talked with Tampa public radio station WUSF-FM's Florida Matters, talking about the future of NPR and public broadcasting in a discussions paired with an interview of NPR president Vivian Schiller conducted in Orlando. My favorite point: That news outlets are moving too slow to address the reality that more of their employees also need to practice the craft elsewhere -- especially stars who have big opportunities on other platforms like Williams -- and that his biggest transgression was probably embarrassing his employer.
Finally, Tampa community radio station WMNF-FM called me about Olbermann and the impact of losing one of TV's most liberal voices. I noted that Olbermann started Countdown in 2003 as a more humorous take on the day's news, getting more pompous, political and harsh as the years passed.
So click the links above if you're interested and check out how a day's worth of interviews played out across the media landscape.
Who knew, when I was slaving through journalism school 20 years ago, that you could earn a living doing this?