The latest contretemps involve such momentous issues as: whether the forced-out anchorman, who held the job for 24 years, would be welcomed at the recent funeral and memorial service for his legendary predecessor, Walter Cronkite; whether the 77-year-old Rather was sufficiently represented in a CBS News special celebrating Cronkite's life and times, or in photos displayed during the memorial service at Avery Fisher Hall; whether an independent filmmaker hoping to make a Rather documentary would be granted access to CBS News archival footage; and whether CBS, in Orwellian style, is trying to make Rather a non-person and erase him from the corporate memory.
I've known that Variety spent 6 months intensely studying all its options. Now toppers Neil Stiles and Brian Gott have decided to go to a paid strategy right after the first of the year. That means the website will no longer be free. So online and print content will both be subscriber-based....Meanwhile, sources tell me that The Hollywood Reporter is about to dump its daily print version.
President Barack Obama: You are about to set the world record for presenting the same show on the most channels in the same day. The record is currently held, of course, by "Law and Order". The only network where you will not be seen is Fox. And that Mr. President, is a crime.
Many of us in the reporter biz have always referred to the Sunday interview programs as the "Game Shows". It's unfortunate that this Sunday, you, President Obama, are playing games with just one of them.
It doesn't matter that many, particularly on the left, consider Fox News an instigator of the right wing extremists and a megaphone for their wildest fringe fantasies. The fact is that with its boffo ratings, it fits well within what is now the dismal definition of news media.
As a matter of principle, President Obama, you should include Fox in this Sunday's merry-go-round of interview show appearances and make the dizzying saturation complete.
First of all, by boycotting only that major national network you are allowing it to trumpet the kind of victim hood that attracts the beehive of loonies like honey. So it's a tactical error to indulge your obvious pique at the unfair and unbalanced coverage of your administration.
Beyond that, you shouldn't need the lecture about how media are not supposed to be wrapped around your little finger as they sometimes were in the campaign. It's probably been an adjustment for you as journalists have rediscovered we're supposed to be skeptical of everyone, including you.
In addition, Chris Wallace is a good solid reporter, who will ask the tough but fair questions. He should get that chance...certainly before David Letterman does.
Oh yeah, by now it's well known that while you're skipping Fox on Sunday you're doing the Letterman show on Monday night. Let me guess: There will probably be some dopey "Ten" list where your comedy writers will have prepped you with some snappy "ad-libs". But no Fox News.
Let's help with a"Ten Reasons You Should Change Your Mind About Fox":
10. Those in the Fox Network audience will get the chance to see you're not Satan. Not that any of them will be convinced.
9. You can refer to the commentators who appear on the program as the "Death Panel".
8. You can finally produce your real birth certificate, although the viewers will immediately charge that its a fake.
7. If you don't like Wallace's questions, you can call him a "Jackass".
6. You can bring your dog along to the studio as you continue to struggle with the puppy's house breaking.
5. You can announce you've invited Joe Wilson over to the White House for a beer. No lie.
4. You'd be able to stick around and be interviewed on "Fox NFL Sunday". That way you will have done both the "Game Shows" and the PRE-game as well.
3. It would be the perfect time to speak with Glenn Beck's colleagues to arrange psychotherapy, and point out it would be covered under your health care plan.
2. You could hang out till after the games and be interviewed by Homer Simpson
1. You could enjoy "Obama's Revenge" by driving down the Fox ratings because people would be sick of seeing you on TV.
Oh wait, there's a call for you from the Casting Director of "Law and Order"
Rupert Murdoch’s plans to charge for mobile access to the Wall Street Journal kick into full gear next month, with $104 fees for non-print or online subscribers for the Wall Street Journal Mobile Reader—and a pay wall for m.wsj.com as well. Current subscribers to print or online will be charged $1 a week more for the privilege of accessing full content on iPhones or BlackBerrys; no extra charge for those who already subscribe to both. Some details:
The apps will still be free to download, and following a cue from WSJ.com, will continue to include some free content. The subscription service starts Oct. 24, but Dow Jones (NYSE: NWS) will try to convert some users into paid subscribers by offering 90 days of full access to anyone using the service prior to that date. To sweeten the pot, WSJ is adding some features: personalization, stock tracking, advanced saving/sharing and “enhanced” market data.
Print subscribers are out of luck when it comes to full access to the mobile browser version of WSJ.com; it will be full accessible only to those with WSJ.com subscriptions.