Seems when Glenn Beck tried to buy Al Gores Current TV last year, they wouldn’t sell saying that Beck’s ideology was too extreme. Now we hear that Current TV has been sold to that moderate Network, Al Jazeera
Read More Iron Mill News Service.
Al Jazeera buys US channel Current TV
Al Jazeera Media Network has announced that it has acquired US cable channel Current TV.
The Qatar-based network said on Thursday that it plans to create Al Jazeera America, a US-based news channel.
The new channel will be headquartered in New York City.
In addition to the existing Al Jazeera news bureaus in New York, Washington, DC, Los Angeles, Miami and Chicago, Al Jazeera will open additional bureaus in key locations across the United States.
“For many years, we understood that we could make a positive contribution to the news and information available in and about the United States and what we are announcing today will help us achieve that goal,” said Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani, director general of Al Jazeera, in a statement.
“By acquiring Current TV, Al Jazeera will significantly expand our existing distribution footprint in the US, as well as increase our newsgathering and reporting efforts in America.”
Gore Pockets Estimated $100M
In an email sent to Current TV’s staff, co-founder and former chief executive officer Joel Hyatt describes the selling process he and co-founder Al Gore went through in considering sale to Al Jazeera, acknowledging Current TV was a failed model.
Hyatt points to the Al Jazeera’s many accomplishments, including its global reach and for being the “only news network” that Obama-supporter Colin Powell watches, as factors in their decision.
The announcement makes clear that Al Jazeera plans to create a new international news network for an American audience called “Al Jazeera America.”
Hyatt reminds his staff that the Qatari government funds Al Jazeera in the announcement, but fails to mention that the news network is considered by some a political and diplomatic tool for the oil-rich monarchy. Drivers in Qatar currently pay about $1 per gallon at the pump, due to massive oil subsidies handed down by the government.
Al Gore Jazeera
Current, meanwhile, began as a groundbreaking effort to promote user-generated content. But it has settled into a more conventional format of political talk television with a liberal bent. Gore worked on-air as an analyst during its recent election night coverage.
Former New York Gov. Elliot Spitzer, former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm and Cenk Uygur are currently its lead personalities. Current signed Keith Olbermann to be its top host in 2011 but his tenure lasted less than a year before it ended in bad blood on both sides.
Current has largely been outflanked by MSNBC in its effort be a liberal alternative to the leading cable news network, Fox News Channel.
Current hired former CNN Washington bureau chief David Bohrman in 2011 to be its president. Bohrman has pushed the network to innovate technologically, with an election night coverage that emphasized social media conversation.
Current TV, founded in 2005 by former vice president Gore and Joel Hyatt, is expected to post $114 million in revenue in 2013, according to research firm SNL Kagan. The firm pegged the network’s cash flow at nearly $24 million a year.