TV veteran David Bohrman is taking over as the new chief executive at online broadcast network Pseudo Programs today, as clear sign that the unconventional company is seeking mainstream respectability.
Bohrman arrives to fill the slot left vacant by former CEO Larry Lux, who resigned suddenly in November. In leaving, Lux had cited "creative differences." The New York-based company has also recently been hit with a sexual-harassment lawsuit brought by a former female employee, who charges that company officials repeatedly ignored her complaints about a sexually charged work environment.
Josh Harris founded Pseudo in 1994, and it has never had a reputation as a button-down place. Instead, it has attracted attention as often for Harris' eccentric lifestyle as for its work with streaming online audio and video. In a Millennial New Year fete in New York, Harris, who describes himself as an artist, hosted a month-long event that involved paying couples to have sex in public. In an interview two weeks ago, Harris says that idea was among one of 50 other "art installations."
During the past year, Harris, who also cofounded research firm Jupiter Communications, has relinquished the day-to-day duties of running the business as chairman, opting to focus instead on the company's creative direction. The executive shift allowed the company under Lux to steer its network of channels toward more mainstream offerings.
Currently, its programming includes 10 channels and 55 shows on a broad spectrum of topics, including new programs on business and technology, personal finance, football and space exploration. Pseudo says that it generates about 10 million pageviews from 300,000 unique visitors a month on average.
Bohrman comes from a strong background in TV broadcasting, after spending two decades at positions at NBC, ABC and CNNfn. Most recently, he served as the executive VP at CNNfn, where he took over the Moneyline News Hour after the departure of Lou Dobbs. At NBC News, he served as an executive producer, leading the network's coverage of the Oklahoma City bombing and the O.J.
Simpson case. He had launched his career at ABC; during his 13 years there he was part of the founding staff of Nightline.
His resume also indicates that he is no stranger to technology. At MSNBC, according to a company statement, Bohrman created the technology-themed show "The Site." He was also responsible for creating ABC News Interactive.
At Pseudo, the TV veteran will be joining Mark Berniker, an executive producer at Pseudo who once worked under Bohrman, producing CNNfn's Digital Jam show on technology. Berniker is in charge of Pseudo's new Business and Technology channel, which slated to launch in the coming weeks.
Bohrman is himself no stranger to controversy. He was forced out of CNNfn in August, less than two months after Lou Dobbs left CNN to launch Space.com.
Dobbs' exit had ignited a management shakeout and turf war.