After complaints of sexual harassment from top talent like Gretchen Carlson and Megyn Kelly, is out as head of Fox News.
The influential media executive is credited with changing the cable news media landscape by focusing providing both news and entertainment, as well as drawing and locking in white, conservative viewers rather than trying to have mass appeal to many demographics. The result? Sky-high ratings and massive appeal among its target audience. No matter what your political affiliation, Fox News changed the way most people saw cable news networks and created a niche market for conservatives who felt the mainstream media was overly-liberal and needed some balance.
Ailes’ departure leaves a gaping hole at Fox News that will, at least for now, be filled by Rupert Murdoch. Murdoch’s sons, Lachlan and James, are expected to take the network over after their father calls it quits.
It remains to be seen whether the Murdochs, who are reported to not have a great relationship with Ailes, will continue his work and vision for Fox News or whether they’ll make some major changes at the network.
Jeff Jarvis, professor and director of the Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the City University of New York’s (CUNY) Graduate School of Journalism; he blogs about the media and news at BuzzMachine.com