Crisis Management Expert Breaks Down Amy Robach And TJ Holmes' GMA Absence - Exclusive

Nearly a week after a trove of possibly incriminating photographs hit the internet, social media still can't stop talking about the alleged affair between "Good Morning America" anchors Amy Robach and T.J. Holmes. An unnamed source told People that Robach and husband Andrew Shue were about to finalize their divorce when the news of her relationship with Holmes broke, while a different source told Page Six that Holmes' wife Marilee Fiebig was "blindsided" by the news. 

Whatever the truth of everyone's current relationship status, it first looked as if Robach and Holmes were going to attempt business as usual. They appeared, as always, on "GMA3" the following day, and Entertainment Tonight reported that they weren't going to face any disciplinary action from ABC. Clearly, something changed, because Page Six has now reported that ABC News president Kim Godwin said in an internal call that the two anchors were being temporarily taken off the air. "After a lot of thought, I am taking Amy and T.J. off the air as we figure this out," Godwin said, saying that the romance had become too much of a distraction.

To better understand this apparent about-face, Nicki Swift asked crisis management expert Eden Gillott of Gillott Communications for her take.

The network's decision 'isn't personal, it's business'

"By taking the two anchors off the air, ABC gains control over the narrative by removing the distraction," Eden Gillott exclusively tells Nicki Swift. She explains, "This applies not only to unwanted news coverage and social media attention but also to ABC's staff. Whispers in the hallways distract employees from work and can have a negative long-lasting effect on employee morale."

With Amy Robach and T.J. Holmes off the air, Gillott says, not only will staffers at the network have less fodder for water-cooler gossip, but the outside world will hopefully take their (our) attention elsewhere as well. "The only reason to take them off the air is to take the spotlight off the network."

On the internal call reported by Page Six, Kim Godwin said the relationship was not a violation of any company policy, and we shouldn't confuse Robach and Holmes's involuntary sabbatical as punishment. Says Gillott, "As long as the two anchors leave without burning bridges behind them, the relationships they've built with ABC should remain intact." As the old saying goes, "The network's decision isn't personal, it's business."