Reactions To CNBC Chief Hoffman

By Brian 

Two perspectives on this week’s presidential moves at CNBC, from anonymous network employees:

> “Pamela Thomas-Graham is one of those book-smart people who can charm CEO’s but has no clue about the news business. Hoffman is awesome, and I think he’s going to shape CNBC into something awesome. Watch for Thomas-Graham and Dobrzinsky to take a quiet early retirement in a few months.”

> “Mark Hoffman is a seasoned TV pro, no doubt. The problem is he, like nearly every exec here before him, knows nothing about business news. [Ed. note: For the record, Hoffman spent four years at CNBC in the late 90’s.] The end result is you have people calling the shots who don’t truly understand the nature of this product or the consumer of this product. It will be interesting to see if Hoffman smartens up and stops dumbing down the business news product. CNBC viewers are not only more affluent than most, they are much smarter too, IQ-smarter. They do not react well to the ‘Eyetwitness News-i-fication’ of business news and this could be in part why ratings are down. Additionally, while Hoffman talks about ‘growing’ the audience, insiders doubt there is that much room for growth for Fox or CNBC. The stock market of 2005 is not the stock market of 2000. Hoffman has his hands full. Furthermore, since everything is done on the cheap at CNBC, it connot command the kind of editorial talent to produce decent programming. While talent is relatively well paid, the newsroom staffers are not. Some money thrown in that direction might help pay for seasoned TV journalists with business backgrounds to turn out more polished programs.”