Twitter Blows Up Over Keith Olbermann Departure

6:26 PM PST 01/23/2011 by Kimberly Nordyke
Donna Ward/Getty Images

Supporters, critics and even rival newscasters including Anderson Cooper and Greta Van Susteren tweeted their thoughts about the "Countdown" host's sudden resignation.

Many Keith Olbermann supporters and critics -- as well as as some rival cable newscasters -- took to Twitter over the weekend to opine over the Countdown host's abrupt departure from MSNBC.

"Comcast deal is approved. Jeff Zucker leaves. #keitholbermann gets fired. Coincidence?" Anderson Cooper tweeted Friday after the news broke. The CNN host also did a report on Olbermann on his show that night.

Fox News' Greta Van Susteren tweeted a couple headlines from her blog posts: "KEITH OLBERMANN GETTING THE BOOT? OR GIVING NBC THE BOOT?" later followed by "How do you get fired AND get your salary?: What is the trick?"

Most other TV news pundits were quiet about the news on Twitter.

Elsewhere, most of the tweeters reacting to the news were speaking out against the decision at both #Olbermann and #KeithOlbermann.

"Tonight on TNT its 'Kill Bill.' Over on MSNBC its 'Kill Keith,' " one Tweeter wrote.

Yet another opined that "#msnbc is in shambles at the moment," while someone else complained: "Losing Keith #Olbermann sucked. Why can't we lose #JoeBuck instead?"

Among the less vocal anti-Olbermann tweeters, there was one message posted at #hateKeithOlbermann: "Oh. So can Rachel Maddow get two hours now?"

The Worst Names in News, a websiote describing itself as "a liberal media watch bull dog exposing all liberal, leftwing, democrats & socialist in national, local, tv, cable & print news," chimed in with this message: "Mission Accomplished #1 KEITH OLBERMANN WORST NAME IN NEWS IS OUT!!" 

A Twitter account seemingly set up simply to mock Olbermann, chimed in with several tweets, including: "I hate greedy, rich snobs! Oh, and I, #KeithOlbermann, left #MSNBC because they wouldn't pay me $7m a year. I'm worth so much more than that."

However, most conservatives have been reacting quietly to the news of the liberal commentator's departure, with far fewer tweets from those opposed to Olbermann. 

Many of the pro-Olbermann comments were directly targeted at Comcast, which is merging with MSNBC parent NBC Universal in a $13.8 billion deal approved by the FCC and Justice Department last week.

Andy Borowitz's satirical website the Borowitz Report quipped in a tweet: "Official #Comcast statement: 'Keith #Olbermann was not a good fit for @MSNBC's new corporate-fascist format.'"

Also from the Borowitz Report: "@MSNBC says #Olbermann departure has nothing to do with #Comcast: 'Even before they bought us, we were giant tools.'"

There also were multiple calls for boycotts of both MSNBC and Comcast.

Bill Casselman, a Canadian author of several humorous books about words and their origins, tweeted multiple times: "If Comcast delivers your internet,cancel it.Punish Comcast for dumping Olbermann.Solid campaign could put Comcast out of business #olbermann."

He also wrote that he "will not watch MSNBC ever again" and that "the new owners suck big time."

Virtual Activism, which describes itself as an "independent nongovernmental organization that promotes social equality and human rights," weighed in with this tweet: "I CANNOT BELIEVE KEITH #OLBERMANN IS GONE!! I CANNOT BELIEVE IT!! That's media consolidation for you. Yeah keep the Becks you idiots!!"

One tweeter also started a #Keithgate hashtag, but it hasn't seem to caught on yet, with only one tweet posted at the time of this posting.

On the other hand, a new trend at #FuckComcast seems to have caught on, with several retweeting the message, "RT if you think it is absolute BULLSHIT that Keith Olbermann is off the air."

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