Keith Olbermann Fired from Current TV: Why Was Olbermann Fired?
Current TV Fires Keith Olbermann; Eliot Spitzer Takes His Place
Keith Olbermann, who was brought aboard by Current TV to revamp their image, has been let go. Keith Olbermann's termination was effective immediately: he won't even be able to sign off on-air.
Famously-temperamental Keith Olbermann fought with his Current TV bosses in private and in public, and refused to host extended election coverage due to ongoing technical problems with his show, Countdown with Keith Olbermann. (Or because Olbermann didn't want to share anchoring duties, depending on whom you ask.)
Olbermann would also sporadically miss work... and tweet about it. This sort of thing is frowned upon by HR, especially if your job description is "news anchor" and you pull a sickie before Super Tuesday.
Current TV has a smaller audience-- and a much smaller operating budget-- than ESPN, Fox Sports, or MSNBC.
Keith Olbermann also battled with ESPN while hosting SportsCenter, and with MSNBC, where he worked for eight years, almost single-handedly tipping its brand identity to the left before joining Current TV in early 2011.
Keith Olbermann responded to his firing via Twitter, writing "I'd like to apologize to my viewers and my staff for the failure of Current TV. Editorially, Countdown had never been better.[...] In due course, the truth of the ethics of [Al] Gore and [Joel] Hyatt will come out."
Olbermann made it clear that he would pursue legal action against Current TV, referencing an earlier case against co-founder Joel Hyatt.
We're not sure what Keith Olbermann's next job will be, but Twitter users have a few ideas, as you can see below.
Eliot Spitzer will be replacing Keith Olbermann as of March 30. While Eliot Spitzer isn't as ranty as Olbermann, he's also not as... (how do we put this nicely) watchable. Ever seen Parker Spitzer on CNN? Trick question: nobody watched Parker Spitzer. In the Arena also never quite found its feet, and the plug was pulled in 2011.
Current TV announced Keith Olbermann's termination in a somewhat bitchy open letter, which is linked below. It reads in part,
Current was also founded on the values of respect, openness, collegiality, and loyalty to our viewers. Unfortunately these values are no longer reflected in our relationship with Keith Olbermann and we have ended it.