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MUIR BREAKS ABC NEWS’ RATINGS RECORD SEASON-TO-DATE,  ANCHORS ONLY WEEK FOR NET WITHOUT YEAR-TO-YEAR DECLINE

David Muir: the next generation of ABC News?

You won’t read this in their press releases, but a stealth weapon has been discovered at ABC News. TMZ has already called him the “Brad Pitt of network anchors.”

TMZ may prove to be way ahead of ABC’s revolving research and management teams.

His name is David Muir and remember that you read it here first: the holiday week Muir filled in for Diane Sawyer, a rare week without an ABC News press release to spin, er tout the ratings, David Muir increased the viewership of adults 25-54 by a whopping 8% over the year before. And that week, the week of December 27th, was the only week of the entire season-to-date (the past 16 weeks) that the demo at ABC News has increased over the prior year.

Some keen observers may say the boost was due to the big snow storm hitting parts of the east coast, especially New York where Brian Williams reported outside in the snow.  He was up 10% year to year.  CBS News with newly deposed morning anchor Harry Smith filling in for Katie Couric, however, was down 9%.

NEW ABC PRESS RELEASE OUT TODAY

Interestingly, today ABC News issued a press release today lauding the week of January 3rd  with the headline: “World News with Diane Sawyer” Draws Second Most Watched Week in Nearly a Year. (The most watched week? Shhhh, David Muir.) Read the rest of this entry »

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I Think the Sherwood Video is Wickedly Funny, but  “Alan Smithee” Will Have to Get the Credit

note from your friendly blogarist: “Anonymousity” will be a continuing discussion in our  daily Xpress,  the blog with the slug line “we put our name to it.”

The inaugural address parody of Ben Sherwood is now viral, at least throughout the news business.  And it is more than a stunning welcome for the new president of ABC News.

As vividly as I can recall “Where were you when Kennedy was shot?” and “Where were you when the space shuttle blew up,”  I suspect I will always be able to answer “Where were you when you first saw the Sherwood video?”

While I think it is wickedly funny, I also think it’s a scathing, and harmful indictment of Anne Sweeney and her decision who will lead ABC News out of the mess in which they are now mired.  And I think that’s too bad.  I, for one, would like to see ABC News, where I spent 17 years of my career, restored to its glory days and financial stability.

ABC NEWS  FORECAST: BLAMESTORM WINDS GATHERING

Years ago, when Betsy West left ABC News to be a vice president at CBS, I sent her a going away card that  read, “We don’t blame you for leaving…” continuing on the inside, “but after you’re gone, we’ll blame you for everything else.”

It’s particularly funny to anyone who knows the standard operating procedures of network news. I should have bought a stack of cards to send “notes to self” over the past five years.

Sadly, over the years, ABC News has been reduced to a toxic soup of pathologic gossip, witch hunts and abuse of power by management.  Someone took the humanity out of human resources and turned it into a weapon of mass destruction. Read the rest of this entry »