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Ad buzzsaw

Dec 22, 2003  •  Post A Comment

Ad buyers and sellers were buzzing last week about a nasty feud between newsletter editor and publisher Jack Meyers and Paul Rittenberg, Fox News head of network sales, that became very public. After the Jack Myers Report published some negative comments about Fox News sales efforts compared with those of CNN, Mr. Rittenberg responded in writing that he planned to go public with charges that Mr. Meyers’ comments “show what happens when a sales organization refuses to be blackmailed or bullied into using Jack as a consultant, subscribing to his newsletter, buying ads on his Web site or letting him hit on their sales assistants.”
Mr. Meyers stormed back in his next newsletter that the charges were untrue, he was no longer a consultant and never hit on anyone, and the accusations bordered on “slander.” Mr. Meyers added: “If your response to my research reflects your quality as a human being, I feel sorry for you and those around you.”
Mr. Meyers told TelevisonWeek that he feels he deserves an apology, but will let it go if no additional comments are made. However, if more accusations surface, he said, “My next step would be to go to my attorneys.”
Mr. Rittenberg told TelevisionWeek he stands by every word he said about Mr. Meyers, whom he referred to as a “shakedown artist.” Mr. Rittenberg added his belief that many TV and ad executives agree with him but are afraid to make their views public. “I work for a guy [Roger Ailes], who isn’t afraid of people like this,” Mr. Rittenberg said. “Roger said, `If you feel this way, go for it.”’