Although critics had a mixed reaction to "Conversations With Michael Eisner," which debuted this week on CNBC, viewers mostly ignored the program. According to Nielsen Media Research, 95,000 people
tuned in-- only 39,000 in the 25-54 demo. CNBC's position is that the numbers do not reflect the quality of the audience--thought to be a media-savvy, highly educated group--and that is probably
true. Still, the numbers indicate that, once again, NBC Universal's cable channel is unable to launch a successful talker. It's tried before, with Tina Brown, Dennis Miller, and John McEnroe.
Eisner's first guests were Martha Stewart and Sony's Howard Stringer. They sat on a simple, striking set, reported earlier to have been heavily influenced by Eisner's own aesthetic sensibilities.
Eisner, the former CEO of The Walt Disney Company, has said that his program's similarity to Charlie Rose's talker on PBS is entirely deliberate; in fact, it was while sitting as a guest on a Rose
program that it occurred to him that he might try his hand at the same thing.
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