Someone with impeccable credentials finally put Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly in his place. Iconic newsman Ted Koppel was a recent guest on O’Reilly’s popular TV show, “The O’Reilly Factor.” Koppel holds some 50 years in the journalism field and is perhaps best known for anchoring ABC’s “Nightline,” television’s first late-night network news program.
Koppel has won just about every major broadcasting award, including 37 Emmys and six George Foster Peabody Awards. Therefore, he’s extremely well-qualified to make some noise and voice his strong opinions, which he bluntly delivered to the Fox News pundit.
In a fascinating and spirited interview with O’Reilly about news and the way it’s been covered over recent years, Koppel unleashed and attacked the manner in which the conservative Fox News network handles business there.
O’Reilly asked for advice on how to deal with GOP Presidential front-runner Donald Trump’s brash and egotistical personality, saying to Koppel, “Not an easy interview. How would you do it?”
Koppel did not hold back, skewering O’Reilly and Fox News:
“You and I have talked about this general subject many times over the years. It’s irrelevant how I would do it. You know who made it irrelevant? You did. You have changed the television landscape over the past 20 years — you took it from being objective and dull to subjective and entertaining. And in this current climate, it doesn’t matter what the interviewer asks him; Mr. Trump is gonna say whatever he wants to say, as outrageous as it may be.”
O’Reilly tried to ignore the scathing critique, but Koppel would not let up. Koppel advised that Fox News might try to counter Trump “by some reporting.”
Koppel went on to say that there is no longer a television audience, but one that has become merely an audience on Twitter, hinting that everything has been dumbed-down, referring to Twitter users as, “They deal in messages of 140 characters or less, which keeps it nice and simple.”
That was uncomfortable but enjoyable TV viewing.
Ted Koppel – One. Bill O’Reilly – Zero.
It will be interesting to see if the pair ever meet again on “The O’Reilly Factor.”