Everybody knows that the CEO of CBS signing Katie Couric to a $15 million a year contract was the dumbest thing Les Moonves had done since green-lighting “Baby Bob,” but now the predictable excuses are flying.
Why are Katie Courics ratings at CBS so bad? It’s not the fault of CBS — it’s the fault of sexist men, of course, according to network President Les Moonves.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m sort of surprised by the vitriol against her. The number of people who donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t want news from a woman was startling,Ã¢â‚¬Â Mr Moonves said of the audienceÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s reaction to Ms Couric, who this month brought ratings for the CBS Evening News to a 20-year low.
This all reminds me of Dan Rather’s defenders in the big media during and after the fake National Guard document fiasco, who were pointing angry fingers at bloggers for all of Dan’s troubles. Sure, and there are lots of busted bank robbers who blame the security camera, too.
CBS still doesn’t understand how much the Rather flap cost them, and is continuing to cost them. They’re suffering from a dangerous form of MSM e-coli. CBS News is like a restaurant that gave a lots of people a nasty case of food poisoning, and the owner can’t understand why people aren’t coming back to give their new chef a try. It must be because the chef is a woman — yeah, that’s what it is.
That aside, let’s assume that men, which comprise the bulk of evening news viewers, don’t want their national news from a woman. Why didn’t CBS research this going in? Did somebody basically place a blind-but-perky $15 million a year bet that they could change the mindset of millions of men instead of simply doing a little research beforehand?
Until CBS wakes up, which is unlikely, Couric’s ratings will continue to sink for many reasons (the least of which is because she’s female). Because of that, the title of “anchor” is particularly applicable in this case.
Update: Dan Rather says that “Moonves knows about entertainment. but he doesn’t know about news.”
And none of them know about Photoshop and Microsoft Word.