Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Waiting For TNT To Advise Weber's Status For Daytona (Updated)

Update: New post is up addressing the TNT information that Weber has been released from his duties this season on TNT's NASCAR events.

Twitter and the Internet have been busy today talking about TNT's Bill Weber. Several reporters have suggested that Weber will not be in the booth for TNT's Wide Open coverage from Daytona this weekend. So far, TNT says that is speculation.

Official word from the TNT folks should come down soon as the time begins to shorten to get things in place with Weber or without him. As TV viewers know, TNT chose not to acknowledge Weber's absence on Sunday or even mention his name.

Things happen in life and certainly happen on the road in both the TV and NASCAR world. Weber has been involved in the sport for a very long time. Veteran fans may remember him as a reporter for Inside Winston Cup Racing on TNN back when Ned Jarrett hosted the show.

Once TNT gets things sorted out, TDP will be informed and will pass the information along to all of you about the upcoming coverage. TNT only has two races remaining, Daytona and then Chicago. Weber has been a part of that TV team since the new contract began in 2007. As they say in the business, stay tuned.

Update: 4PM ET and no info from TNT about Sunday's NASCAR announcers.

Final Tuesday Update: There will be no official information from TNT about this issue on Tuesday. Information is expected to be released later this week.

TDP welcomes your comments on this topic. Just click the comments button below to add your opinion. This is a family-friendly website, please keep that in mind when posting. Thanks for taking the time to stop by, we will update this topic continuously.


Anonymous said...

Reports are "speculation", yet they choose not to deny them out-of-hand. Interesting.

RonFWNC said...

TNT has probably made things worse by not saying anything for the last 30 or so hours, since the story started to break. I wonder where today's story, that the suspension would carry over to another work, began to make the rounds.

Sooner this is squared away, sooner we can get back to discussing racing. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to read Mikey's latest tweet.

Anonymous said...

Personally I would hope they choose to replace him for good. He seems to be full of himself and too dramatic for most fans of Nascar. I once tried to get his autograph in the garage and he couldn't have been bothered. Even a busy driver was more friendly than he was. Ralph Shaheen did a great job. Keep him for the last 2 races and for all 6 next year!
As far as no comment from TNT, the quieter they are the louder they get.

Daly Planet Editor said...

I have been urging them to get it out and move on before it gets bigger than it should.

Lots going on this week and this issue should not be a distraction from TNT's biggest race of their season.


Dillio said...

I have LOVED TNT's NASCAR coverage (a lot funner to watch than Fox's coverage) and I have not been happy about how they are handling this situation.

Ron said...

Bottom line: Sheheen showed he is a better fit for the job than Weber. While Sheheen would not be my long term #1 pick - BOB JENKINS, PLEASE, for only 6 races it's perfect - he was much better than Weber. Weber, like Punch, was much better suited to reporting/hosting than lap-by-lap.

HarpAmy/Amy in FL said...

I will add my 2 cents worth. I watched the Sonoma race until about lap 20-30 then got a 103 degree fever. While I was watching it, I heard Weber say "Kenseth in the 17" and another driver in another car number. I was watching with my dad and said to my dad "duh, like we didn't know that". It was so dorky. Don't get me wrong, I don't wish ill will or bad things on people but I think that Weber is more suited to other things.

I asked my dad how he liked Sheheen and he said that he liked them better. I tended to agree with that.

Anonymous said...

R.I.P. Bill Weber
Sorry your NASCAR TV career is over

RonFWNC said...

Well, TNT finally said something about Weber; he's out of the booth for the next two races as well. No discussion of the future, no discussion of the underlying event in the hotel on Friday. So everyone gets to speculate a bit longer.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Where did you hear that Ron?

Richard in N.C. said...

I nominate Eli Gold.

Dot said...

If AB got booted over an innocent game of hockey and breaking his leg, TNT should show Weber the same courtesy. I'm still mystified over that. Like he needed his leg to report a race.

What I don't understand is, why is TNT being so cloak and dagger about it? And, who have they paid off to remain mum on the details?

Any bets that TNT says Weber wants to spend more time with his family? That's always the standard excuse.

Anonymous said...

I don't think TNT "owes" us fans any info. They fired a employee for conduct issues - end of story. Their telecasts are not the right place to handle HR issues for thier workers.

Alex said...

Jayski posted a report from SI's Tom Bowles who says that Weber will not be in the booth at Daytona.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Alex, posting a report on what someone else speculated on an Internet radio show is not exactly my idea of fact.

We are going to wait until TNT gives us the official info.


Bruce Simmons said...

What Alex said, under the header "No Bill Weber in the TNT booth UPDATE no Daytona?" at http://tinyurl.com/2ozn9s.

With me I always got distracted by how often Weber made errors in his deliveries. Mispoken words or names. I always wondered how he retained his booth seat!

Daly Planet Editor said...

Bruce, TNT told me they were in a meeting dealing with that issue.

I will hang until I hear it from the horse's mouth.


majorshouse said...

I really enjoyed Ralph Sheheen and it would not hurt my feelings if he finished out the contract. I still feel that TNT's coverage on the whole has been much better than anything that Fox or ESPN has ever givne us and would love to see them have the entire contract. It has been one fun ride with them this season.

Steve L. said...

JD, do you think we'll hear something tonight? Also, do you think they'll make a formal statement about the whole thing? News conference?

Daly Planet Editor said...

Steve, the time is getting short to get this settled. Lots of pre-production for the Daytona race has already been done and the conference calls should be well underway.

These races are a huge TV production, no matter how many times a network has been at the track.

My guess is that we will hear something sooner than later. TNT has been great in exchanging information with me over the past three seasons and it has been fun to watch them grow into a solid NASCAR TV group.

Hopefully, they will make a fair decision and then move-on to the race coverage.

We will keep ya posted.


glenc1 said...

I agree with Anon 5:45...I'm incredibly curious, but I still think it's not our business. Other companies don't reveal discplinary issues. But I also agree that TNT shouldn't drag it out.

Richard, I'd have to kill myself, lol. Just put Ralph back in.

Anonymous said...

No sympathy here for Bill Weber.
Ralph was GREAT - hope he's back.

He knows racing and goes back to the old TNN days.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Final Tuesday update: There will be no information released on Tuesday about Bill Weber's status for Daytona and Chicago with TNT.

An update should happen later this week and TDP will continue to be the official source for information on this topic.


Alex said...

John, my intention was not to post that item as a fact, but merely stating that an unconfirmed report was thrown out there regarding TNT's talent assignment.

That said, it still is a report, from one source. Naturally as more corroborate (or dispute, as the case may be) the report, we will have more light shed on the situation.

PammH said...

JD, we can always depend on you to be fair & rational regarding this type of situation! TY sooo much for giving us this forum to interact..

Gymmie said...

@Dot--I agree! Allen could do the race by himself with one hand tied behind his back if he had to.

If Weber is gone forever I won't be sad. I do hope that if he is gone for at least this weekend, that Ralph will get to be up there again.

crockett said...

Kyle Petty's tweet: "Ok answers to a few of your questions; Bill Weber personal business is all i know right now..."

PammH said...

Soo...is KP lying or does he really not know?? I find that hard to believe-honestly, but I could be wrong..

Daly Planet Editor said...

No problem Alex! We like to look at how the media works even as we sometimes find ourselves right in the middle of it all.

Please continue to supply us links that you see about this story...no matter how unofficial they might be.


Kyle said after this happened that he went to a concert (REO Speedwagon I think) and Bill was gone the next day. He has been straight with all of us so far, I think he gets the benefit of the doubt on this one IMHO.


crockett said...

It was REO Speedwagon, STYX and 38 Special. KP: "if that doesn't bring back high school memories ..."

TexasRaceLady said...

It may seem a bit cold, but it won't break my heart if Weber is not in the booth for the remaining TNT portion of the year.

Ralph did a superb job. His enthusiasm was contagious. His manner was NOT condescending. He was relaxed, as if he was sitting on my couch with a cold beer and we were talking about the race.

The actual race may not have been that interesting, but the chemistry in the booth made it fun.

I'm curious about what happened, but it's none of my business.

red said...

i honestly don't know how i would handle this were i in tnt's position. on the one hand, you have a very visible member of your broadcast team clearly being punished for some behavior that you believe is unprofessional, insubordinate or reflects poorly on the organization. the incident has escalated and people are clamoring for a detailed explanation of what happened to cause this action on your part.

on the other hand, as an employer, you have a responsibility for maintaining the confidentiality between an employer and employee. to me as an employer in the workplace, this, without a doubt, trumps everything.

as a fan, i can be as curious as the next person. as an employer, i don't want anyone involved in a disciplinary procedure between myself and my employee: not a spouse, not a parent, not a friend and certainly not a fan.

unless someone who was involved in whatever happened steps forward voluntarily and explains the episode, we may not ever know what happened. but for this fan, that's ok b/c the bigger issue of employer/employee confidentiality is respected.

where tnt is going wrong is in not being definitive and saying that their employee has either served his suspension satisfactorily and will be returning to the booth on sunday OR that discussions between the employee and employer are continuing.

Dot said...

"where tnt is going wrong is in not being definitive and saying that their employee has either served his suspension satisfactorily and will be returning to the booth on sunday OR that discussions between the employee and employer are continuing."

@ red, That's why this whole issue is so captivating. We're all wondering what happened. So of course we're going to think the worst.

I'm sure we have all lost our minds at some time or another. But, to get suspended from work? It had to be something indefensible.

red said...

@dot: i agree and particularly appreciate your choice of the word "captivating" to summarize it! but we're tossing around what tnt should/shouldn't say -- or reveal -- about what happened. while i'm fine with all of us being curious about what "it" was, myself included, i understand tnt not revealing the details and i support that decision.

what i don't agree with is this indecisiveness on tnt's part. if they are choosing to maintain employer/employee confidentiality, then they need to simply state that and eliminate the speculation that they "might" reveal something at some future date. they are being advised by someone in the organization as to how to handle this and i don't believe they are being advised well.

we won't like being told "this matter is between us and one of our employees and our policy is that we absolutely do not discuss employee issues with anyone except the employee. no exceptions." but that is precisely what tnt should say.

if they choose to release him, they need only say "we have released him/separated him/decided to part ways . . ." whatever their corporate-speak language is in cases like this. it is up to weber himself or someone who was involved in whatever happened to release the details, not tnt as the employer.

Anonymous said...

Good riddance. The new guy was great.

Richard in N.C. said...

Sounds like maybe they're having help from some of those fine attorneys that Lee Iaccoca wanted to send to Japan years ago to help the Japanese with their cars?

Kenn Fong said...


When I was trying to get into show business, I was always told to be nice to everyone on the way up because if you're not, they will all have their knives out waiting for you when you stumble.

Looks like Bill W. (yes, I note the irony fellow twelve-steppers) is finding out that payback is a beach.

West Coast Kenny
Alameda, California

Anonymous said...

By the time a 30 day rehab session is finished, TNT's remaining races will be over. Have a good off-season - Bill W.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Well, always interesting to speculate but we really have no clue about the reality yet.

TNT info should be heading our way sooner than later.


red said...

Daly Planet Editor said...
Well, always interesting to speculate but we really have no clue about the reality yet.

TNT info should be heading our way sooner than later.

but that's my point, jd: WHY should tnt info -- beyond what they've chosen to say so far -- come our way at all? why are they perceived to be under any obligation to reveal what happened? b/c he's a tv face each week for them? he's their employee and they have a responsibility to their entire employee base to maintain confidentiality about disciplinary proceedings.

b/c we're curious as fans? of course we are and of course we're going to speculate. and that speculation is going to be tough for weber. but again, that is not tnt's responsibility.

i have to say it again: as an employer dealing with an employee in a disciplinary matter, one of my roles is to maintain confidentiality. when i had to terminate someone, what i told his/her curious colleagues is this: "this is a matter between myself, as a representative of XYZ, and him/her. we do not discuss disciplinary matters with fellow employees, something i'm sure you can appreciate. you would want the same to happen if you were involved. if he/she wants to tell you about it, that's his/her choice but i cannot and will not do so."

the rules of ethical corporate employee relations don't change -- or shouldn't! -- b/c someone is visible to the public. the responsibility for the behavior lays with the individual; the responsibility for addressing it in a manner consistent with its policies lays with the employer. fan speculation shouldn't change that.

by the way, what i'm finding interesting is how few media folk are even addressing this, folk who are usually given to speculation and all sorts of 'unnamed sources' to grab a headline or two. human nature being what it is, it appears that it may be more of a "there but for the grace of God go i" versus a sudden appearance of journalistic integrity that prevents speculation in print, on radio, on tv.

but i could be wrong.

Daly Planet Editor said...

There is a new post up with the TNT information about Weber's release from TNT.