Convenient (But Costly) Idiots
Olbermann and MSNBC are knocking heads over a new contract. The controversial host of Countdown With Keith Olbermann is said to be seeking "north of $4 million" a year, according to an industry source, to re-up on his pact that comes due in April. That would represent roughly a four-fold increase over his current deal, believed to be in the $1 million-per-year range.
Olbermann is looking for such a big pay raise because Countdown has been on fire, playing a big part in the current audience uptick at the network. In the key 25-54 demo, its ratings are up 25% year-to-date and an astounding 75% so far in the fourth quarter. (source)
Of course "up 25%" has a meaning of its own at MSNBC, a dark hole in the cable ratings where any increase at all will be significant as a percentage.
Olbermann's incredibily high self esteem will smash head-on into NBC Universal's demand that its broadcast holdings make $750 million in budget cuts -- a sign that even with Olbermann's big jump, money-hemorrhaging is still the name of the game at NBC.