MTV Taps Klein as Programming Chief

MTV, looking to make itself a vital part of a new generation of young viewers, named Michael Klein as executive VP of original content.

Klein, previously executive VP of alternative programming at Condé Nast Entertainment, replaces Susanne Daniels, who left MTV last year and is now VP of originals at Google's YouTube.

The appointment was made by Sean Atkins, president of MTV since last September. Atkins had been general manager and executive VP of digital media and strategy at Discovery Communications.

"Michael is a proven hitmaker with a strong feel for our audience, a keen eye for talent, and a successful track record of reinventing brands through distinctive, creator-driven content," said Atkins.  "His leadership and experience are an excellent fit for MTV in this pivotal moment for the network, as we accelerate a new development slate of music and pop culture-inspired programming."

Under Daniels, MTV aired a number of scripted series including Scream, Finding Carter and Faking it.

But MTV has symbolized the larger problems at parent company Viacom, which has seen ratings at many of its networks decline as young viewers migrate to digital entertainment choices, resulting in lower advertising revenue and less leverage in negotiation with distributors.

Klein's background is in unscripted series. At Condé Nast, he was responsible for programming strategy, development and production for millennial-targeted digital channels, many of which are linked to the company's magazines. The company produced Glamour's Screw You Cancer and GQ's Casulaties of the Gridiron under his leadership.

As executive VP of alternative programing at Condé Nast Entertainment, he developed programs including Vanity Fair Confidential for ID, The New Yorker Presents and The Fashion Fund for Amazon.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.