Gibson Rises

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In a stunning upset, ABC's World News With Charles Gibson has apparently beaten NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams in the February sweeps, both in overall households and in adults 25-54, according to preliminary Nielsen ratings data. Gibson's apparent victory comes after Williams had held the lead for the first 20 weeks of the season. It also comes following ABC's effort to challenge Williams with the dual-anchor team of BOB WOODRUFF and Elizabeth Vargas (then by Vargas alone after Woodruff's injuries in Iraq) and after the entry into the news wars of Katie Couric as anchor of the CBS Evening News. Meanwhile, both today's (Thursday) Los Angeles Times and New York Times reported that Nightly News producer John Reiss is about to step down -- not because of the show's falling ratings but because of friction with anchor Williams. "He and Brian have never really been copacetic," a program staffer told the Los Angeles newspaper. The New York paper said that Reiss's successor could be announced as early as today.



Tags: ABC - NBC - Brian Williams - BOB WOODRUFF - Elizabeth Vargas - Katie Couric - CBS

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