Ann Curry “wasn’t good at her job,” said author Brian Stelter in his new book, Top of the Morning. Stelter went behind the scenes when Curry replaced Meredith Vieira on NBC’s Today show, only to get the axe a year later in the notorious Operation Bambi.
The New York Times staff writer and veteran reporter placed a lot of blame for ratings shift from Today to Good Morning America at the feet of the luckless Ann Curry. As far as Stelter is concerned, the ratings tell the tale — and the sorry truth is that Curry’s performance just didn’t cut it.
After 15 years, Good Morning America finally passed up Today in the ratings with co-host Ann Curry in the chair.
He also saved some blame for NBC itself, calling out the producers for letting the show get stale.
Whether Ann Curry was good at her job or not, Brian Stelter admitted that she faced an uphill battle for acceptance on Today. Calling the TV morning news business “Machiavellian” and “cutthroat,” he pointed out that hundreds of millions of dollars are at stake in the battle to win viewers.
Although Matt Lauer has claimed that he was unfairly attacked for Curry’s firing, Stelter didn’t paint an attractive picture of his role in Operation Bambi. NBC insiders, including Lauer’s co-host Kathie Lee Gifford, are reportedly furious about some of the accusations hurled his way.
An unnamed insider told Radar that Today show staff had lost what respect remained for Ann Curry in the wake of the book’s publication. According to that anonymous source, NBC blames Curry for somehow passing gossip to Stelter, either directly or by giving permission to her friends to speak with him.
According to that claim, “There is just so much negativity geared towards Matt and the bosses at NBC, that only a few people knew about, Ann included. Who would have the motivation to reveal such damaging information? Ann and/or her friends and allies.”
If so, Brian Stelter didn’t return the favor with some kind words for Ann Curry’s performance on Today. And, who knows, maybe he’s right.
With viewers defecting right and left to Good Morning America, is there anyone out there who actually watched to see whether or not Ann Curry “wasn’t good at her job?”