Ed Turner has resigned as president of the Forum Network, a
public-affairs cable network struggling to get launched since this spring.
Turner, a former Cable News Network executive, was replaced
last week by Jack Hurley, who was named interim president of the Forum Network. The
network is being developed through a partnership of WETA, a public-TV station in
Washington, D.C., and The Freedom Forum, a nonpartisan media-oriented foundation.
Turner, who will serve as a consultant to the Forum
Network, could not be reached for comment. He was named president of the Forum Network
But Charles Overby, chairman of The Freedom Forum and the
Freedom Network, said, "We had a difference in management style. But Ed did a
terrific job of laying the groundwork for the channel."
This summer, news broke that Turner and Peter Arnett, who
left CNN after the so-called Tailwind scandal, were writing a book about the all-news
channel. Reportedly, both Time Warner Inc. vice chairman Ted Turner and CNN News Group
chairman Tom Johnson signed off on the project.
The Forum Network, originally slated to debut in this
spring, has had trouble getting distribution in its target market, the greater Washington
area. It is now set to premiere late this year or early next year.
Overby is upbeat about getting carriage in Washington,
noting that a Comcast Corp. executive, Jaye Gamble, is now on the network's board.
Comcast is buying systems in the DMA that will give it control of the market.
The Forum Network plans to kick off as a regional network,
then expand nationally.
Hurley is a veteran broadcast-news manager who joined The
Freedom Forum in 1993, overseeing broadcast and interactive productions. He's worked
at a number of broadcast outlets and TV stations, including ones owned by Gannett Co. and