Keith Olbermann is accusing Gawker of getting burned by a source who rattled off a tirade against the embattled Current host's "rage, outbursts and bad suits." In classic fashion, Gawker provided a soap box to the anonymous source who claims to have (probably regrettably) worked for Keith Olbermann, and following a brief intro by Hamilton Nolan, the exposée of sorts cuts straight to the chase. Keith, however, insists that something's amiss. He tweeted less than an hour after Gawker published its exclusive:
Then, Olbermann proceeds to fact-check some of the specifics, like camera angles and the staff turnover rate:
Among other things @Gawker's source got wrong: staff turnover was closer to 7%. Of top 20 people on show in '03, 17 still there day I left— Keith Olbermann (@KeithOlbermann) January 9, 2012
But he stops short of letting the post take up his whole lunch break:
In short, @Gawker - you got pwned by a fake source— Keith Olbermann (@KeithOlbermann) January 9, 2012
Olbmann's fact-checking potentially pokes holes in the account Gawker published, but it isn't terribly convincing as a takedown of the takedown. Inevitably, many of the anonymous source's revelations have been reported elsewhere. And that staff turnover figure is different, but a lot of things could explain that, perhaps a broader definition of Olbermann's staff. What's perhaps more revealing that the alleged mistakes he points out is what Olbermann doesn't mention. These details converge around one very simple point: Working for Keith Olbermann stinks. Emphasis Nolan's:
-Keith is the walking definition of a hostile work environment. Countdown had a 75% staff turnover rate in the time I was there -- high even for the cable news business. Keith had people he liked, and people he didn't like, and there was no rhyme or reason to it. When he didn't like someone, he'd berate them and belittle their work until they left the show. Then he'd do the same to the next person on his shit list. When someone he liked moved on, he'd take it out on the rest of us. If he got mad at someone for something specific (like not magically knowing he didn't want to be bothered at a certain time), he wouldn't acknowledge them for the rest of the day.
That does not sound like a fun place to work, but we've known for a long long time that Keith Olbermann is not a fun guy to work with. Furthermore, Olbermann's behavior over the past couple of weeks only confirms that he's not changed too much at Current. We haven't seen a response from Gawker defending the post, but at least one of its writers, thinks the fake source was "Al Gore, probably." We think he's kidding, probably.