Tuesday, September 7, 2010

ABC News Chief David Westin Resigns

ABC News Chief David Westin Resigns 

David Westin is resigning from his position as president of ABC News, which he's held since 1997, apparently because of a "long-running conflict... over the financial standing of the news division." Of course! Want to read his resignation note?

The Times' Bill Carter broke the news on Monday night, citing "top staff members" who said that Westin would resign on Tuesday. But apparently Westin decided to go a little earlier, and sent the below email to staffers on Monday evening (you can also read ABC Television head Anne Sweeney's note).

The resignation appears to have been about—what else?—an inability to make the news division profitable (even though Good Morning America is bringing in "boatloads of money," thanks to Sam Champion's ultra-profitable drug-smuggling ring). ABC has already committed to firing as much as a quarter of its staff, but—among other things—lacks a cable news channel (a la NBC's MSNBC or Fox's Fox News) to help it cut costs (no, ABC Family is not news).

It's unclear who will replace Westin, who's staying until the end of the year, though Sweeney says the replacement will be announced "in the near future." Whoever it is will probably fire everyone who's left and just put on Sports Center in the old Nightline spot.

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