The eloquently apoplectic Keith Olbermann, until recently a high-profile MSNBC star, has finally revealed his next move: Olbermann says he will be taking up residence at Current TV, a privately held cable channel founded by Al Gore and Joel Hyatt, as TV show host, part owner, and "chief news officer." Olbermann will host an "amplified and stronger" version of his MSNBC show, "Countdown," and help shape the still-fledgling network's programming. The liberal pundit says he was attracted to Current TV's independence from "corporate interference." But is moving to a little-watched network really a good career move? (Watch an HLN discussion about Olbermann's announcement)
Olbermann's taking a big risk: Signing with Current TV "seems a perplexing move" for Olbermann, says Lacey Rose in Forbes. But the risk of moving to a smaller network still "desperate for viewers" may be worth it for the "notoriously opinionated host," since he'll no longer have to clash with "corporate overlords." Maybe he can even put Current TV "on the map."
"Liberal firebrand Keith Olbermann moving to Current TV"
This is the beginning of the end for Olbermann: This isn't the first time a big star has tried to put a smaller media outlet on the map, says Jon Friedman in MarketWatch, pointing to Dan Rather joining Marc Cuban's HDNet channel, and Howard Stern jumping to Sirius satellite radio. Neither move panned out, and "the media world is littered" with similar examples of "stars who left familiar perches to roll the dice," and lost. "Current TV is a classy boutique TV channel," but expect to hear a lot of this in the future: "Keith Olbermann. Remember him?"
"Do you remember Keith Olbermann?"
Olbermann can OWN Current TV: Olbermann's stake in Gore's network, both financially and editorially, might make this more "the kind of pact Oprah Winfrey and Discovery Communications struck for her new cable network, OWN," says Andrew Wallenstein in PaidContent. And if Olbermann can mold "the entire channel's sensibility in [his] own image" — as, let's face it, he did with MSNBC — there's no reason this can't be great for both him and Current TV.
"Why Keith Olbermann makes sense for Current TV"