I’ve got a man crush on former Newcastle left-back Jose Enrique. I’m not afraid to admit it. We didn’t seem to need him last night (get in the bin United) and maybe my man crush may move to Davide Santon.
If I ever had enough scratch to buy a kit, I would have had his name on the back.
His mazey runs and link-up play were an absolute joy to watch. So too was being a witness of his upward trajectory during his time on Tyneside. He started out as an unknown foreign quantity, was rubbish his first season, got relegated, stuck it out and then came better than anyone expected.
And of course we sold him to Liverpool.
This upset me greatly. Well, I didn’t lose a lot of sleep, but I often wonder WWJD as I watch Ryan Taylor totally flummoxed at left-back.
But just because Enrique moved to Liverpool (Andy who) doesn’t mean I’m going to run and be a Liverpool fan. Yes, I’m American, no I don’t have REAL FAN significant ties to Newcastle, but I’m no plastic.
Anyway, this all got me thinking. As some plastics tend to change allegiances when their favorite players trots off to another club, do we as media consumers do the same thing? Are we as journalists more attune to the institution rather than the personality?
I was watching this webcast on the New York Times earlier today with Bruce Headlam and David Carr (of Page One fame). They were recapping the year that was in journalism and touched on the fact that some major broadcast personalities jumped ship from networks to forge forward on their own.
Oprah. Glenn Beck. Keith Olbermann. All major players when it comes to broadcast in the US. All jumped ship, either by their own volition or you know, for being a bit batty..
But as Carr and Headlam acknowledge, the ratings for all three of those personalities and their significant moves hasn’t quite worked out all that well. It seems that people still tend to follow broadcast institutions more than their tv personalities.
Oprah’s new station, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN – heh) has had a much tougher go of it than most expected. Of course this could change now that Oprah has returned to host her own show, which has already debuted and received decent ratings. This is Oprah we’re talking about anyway.
And what happened to Glenn Beck?
Well he’s got his own web-based channel now… GBTV
It’s a subscriber based network. To just watch Beck’s daily, two-hour show you can pay $50 a year. For the whole kit and kaboodle? $100.
Arguably he’s fared better getting subscribers and making the switch at first than Oprah and Keith Olbermann.
In Olbermann’s case, the transition has been a bit of a disaster.
For those of you unfamiliar with Olbermann, well consider him the liberal version of Glenn Beck. I know a lot of people who like him, my mom included, but personally, I think he’s just another shade of a pundit with a big ego and bigger mouth that won’t shut up. I’ve also always been a bit annoyed by him co-opting Edward R. Murrows signature sign off.
Anyway, Olbermann got the boot from MSNBC awhile ago and joined up with Al Gore’s cable television network, Current TV. Pretty sure Current is available in the UK.
Olbermann is notorious for falling out with executives, generally acting pig-headed and alienating nearly everyone who works at him. He famously quit ESPN way back when.
The hope was that when Olbermann joined Current, and brought his show Countdown with him, the cable channel would begin to see a swell of viewers and a the foundations of it becoming a progressive news channel being laid.
That really hasn’t happened, and now Olbermann and his show are getting clipped during caucus coverage.
@KeithOlbermann Never been subpoena’d in my life. But on the subject of criminal offences, how are your Countdown ratings?
So then, as consumers of media, and media specialists by trade, do you value the institution or the individual more? Are your reading/viewing habits based on individual writer/newscaster, or by channel or media outlet?
Have we moved away from the idea of strictly following one institution thanks to the wider accessibility of news and content?
Let us know what you think! Comment below or tweet us @wannabehacks
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After finishing my stint in student media, I couldn’t help but look