This year has been the year of crises for Fox News.
First, Megyn Kelly jumped ship to NBC. Then, their most popular on-air personality, Bill O’Reilly, was shown the door over a barrage of sexual harassment allegations. And co-president Bill Shine resigned over the scandal. Not to mention the death of former CEO Roger Ailes.
And the troubles aren’t easing. All those sexual harassment lawsuits are continuing through the legal process; more immediately, the news network that once dominated the Nielsens has endured a recent ratings dip.
That thunderhead of negativity could be easily fell any media company, but that hasn’t happened yet. But as Vanity Fair notes, it has created an “existential angst” within the company itself—a “standoff” between the old guard (i.e. Rupert Murdoch) and the new (his sons Lachlan and James). And it begs the question: “Is Fox News hoping to patch over its recent spate of unpleasant headlines, or is it ready to truly transform its culture once and for all?
“And, probably more important: what would be left if it did?”
As Vanity Fair reports, citing sources within the company, not a lot is expected to change with the elder Murdoch still in power. There’s also been an attempt made to restock the pantry with a new post-Ailes leader—David Rhodes, president of CBS News, as a potential example.
But it’s unclear how much will change in the short term, and if any change does occur, what it will mean for the Fox News of yesteryear.
Something eventually has to give.
“There has to be a course correction or they will lose that very successful business,” a former Fox executive told Vanity Fair.
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