TV Week's Top Ten List

Written By mista sense on Monday, April 14, 2008 | 9:15 AM

TV Week's Michele Greppi offers her take on the ten most powerful people in TV news. Many of the names--Tim Russert, Roger Ailes, Jon Klein--are familiar to Cable Gamers, while others, most notably, Amy Poehler of "Saturday Night Live"--best known for her dead-on portrayal of Hillary Clinton--are new (and well deserved in the view of TCG) entrants onto the list.

But in the spirit of fair & balanced, we should note a different view from the always well-reasoned blogInside Cable News critiques the TV Week list, calling it "a disservice to its readers... more of a beauty contest version of power, sort of a 'What’s hot/What’s not.'" ICN argues, for example, that Ailes has more raw power than anyone else in the industry, in the sense of getting things done. By contrast, say, Steve Capus of NBC News, rated #1 by Greppi, has to share authority with Jeff Zucker, the overall chief of NBCU. In addition, ICN dismisses the power of Bill O'Reilly and Keith Olbermann.

These are all interesting points, leading one to a discussion of the proper definition of "power"--a whole huge topic.

But for her part, The Cable Gamer thinks that visibility is its own kind of power. I am not sure that I would recognize Steve Capus if I saw him on the street. But I would sure know Olbermann and O'Reilly. And Poehler and Jon Stewart, and Stephen Colbert. As they say in TV, people look before they listen. And for better or for worse, people look to stars for edification, amusement, even inspiration. And that's power, baby.

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