The apparently sudden departure of Keith Olbermann from MSNBC had actually been planned for weeks according to The New York Times.
For the last several weeks, Mr. Olbermann and the network have been in negotiations to end his successful run on MSNBC, according to executives involved in the talks who requested anonymity because the talks were confidential. The deal was completed on Friday, and Mr. Olbermann made the announcement on his final “Countdown” hours later.
Olbermann who signed a four year contract in 2008 for a reported $30 million will not be able to comment on his separation deal and will be restricted from doing television work but is free to seek a radio gig or vent on the internet.
So don’t weep for a guy who will be collecting about $7.5 million in “unemployment” benefits while he decides what to do next.
Olbermann’s fans on the left reacted negatively to the news with Bill Maher using a four-letter word on the air to describe his feelings about the dismissal.
One of the most interesting conspiracy theories promulgated by the left is that cable giant Comcast which just won FCC approval for taking over NBC Universal was responsible. Comcast denied the charges saying it had no operational control of the company yet and that they had pledged not to interfere with NBC Universal’s news operations.
Despite the solid ratings (for MSNBC) that Olbermann delivered for the network there is no doubt that he was attracting the kind of attention the MSNBC brass was uncomfortable with and it was easier to pay him for the last year of his contract rather than risk any further embarrassment.