21 July 2016

I'm Doing a Happy Dance Here

Roger Ailes has left the building:
In the dark for days, Fox News staffers finally got word on Thursday about the future of their network.

The news was delivered in person by Rupert Murdoch, the 85-year-old media mogul who started Fox News with Roger Ailes 20 years ago.

It was an unexpected visit, and with stunned employees listening in Fox’s Midtown Manhattan headquarters, Mr. Murdoch announced that Mr. Ailes was out as chairman and chief executive. Mr. Murdoch himself would be taking over Fox News in the interim.

Mr. Ailes was not there. Mr. Murdoch had barred him from the building starting on Wednesday, according to one person briefed on the matter. The person said Fox News’s parent company, 21st Century Fox, had learned Mr. Ailes was trying to get some of his on-air stars to criticize those who cooperated with investigators looking into accusations of sexual harassment against him.


Mr. Murdoch will assume the role of chairman and will be an interim chief executive of the Fox News channel and Fox Business Network until a permanent replacement for Mr. Ailes is found. His interim role is intended to ensure stability during the rest of the presidential race, and to be taken as a signal that the network is not on the verge of a wide-ranging overhaul, said a person briefed on the matter. Mr. Murdoch plans to be “extremely engaged” and had already been attending some news meetings because Mr. Ailes has had health issues recently, the person said.
I think that a lot of this is also driven by the fact that Fox News has horrible demographics, the average age of a viewer is 68, which means that the audience is literally dying off.

To change this, the network needs an extensive rework, and Ailes was clearly not the man for the job.

My guess is that they will stick with the current format and lineup through the elections, and then they start rearranging the deck chairs.


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