Keith Olbermann won’t be on the air at Current TV for Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary, just as he was on the sidelines for last week’s Iowa caucuses.The media narrative is, in a phrase, there he goes again, Olbermann being his famously difficult self, as he was at MSNBC, which he left last year after a huge rift with management, and at ESPN.But I can tell you after doing some digging that the two sides see this impasse very differently. I can also tell you that it’s not yet resolved, optimistic public statements to the contrary.Although Olbermann is the star anchor and “chief news officer” under his $10-million-a-year deal, he was mentioned nowhere in the Current press releases for two new shows: the recently debuted Cenk Uygur program and the soon-to-launch show featuring former Michigan governor Jennifer Granholm. That was telling. And while Olbermann was consulted in advance about the new hires—he doesn’t have veto power—some Current executives believe he doesn’t particularly want to share the spotlight with other budding stars.Thus it was that Granholm and Ugyur were on the air for the Iowa coverage—along with Al Gore, Current’s co-founder—and Olbermann was not. In fact, his Countdown program was preempted for the live caucus coverage.“We’ve been wanting Keith to be part of our election coverage and hope he will be in the future,” says Current TV President David Bohrman, a former CNN executive who joined the network last fall.Bohrman asked Olbermann two months ago to take a leading role in Current’s primary and caucus coverage, and he declined. And here the perspectives sharply diverge.Management believes that Olbermann didn’t think the niche network, which had mostly featured taped programming, would cover the primary caucuses without him. The lowly rated four-hour block on caucus night preempted his show.Olbermann’s camp believes Current, with its limited resources, had no business taking on this new challenge without first fixing the technical problems that have plagued Countdown.No one disputes that the glitches have been serious, with lighting failures literally leaving the anchor in the dark. Olbermann’s side is frustrated that these problems have dragged on for months. Why, then, is Current building studios for Granholm (in San Francisco) and Uygur (in L.A.) without fixing New York? But management faults Olbermann and a previous president for picking the Manhattan building that now seems unable to support a modern, high-definition studio; the control room is a truck parked on the street outside.Bottom line: both sides are miffed. Some executives think Olbermann needs to rail against management (even though he is part of management now) because it’s an integral part of his personality. Olbermann appears hurt that the dispute became public and has been relatively restrained (though he’s ripped the media coverage of his travails on Twitter). The publicity has not been kind, with New York Times columnist David Carr writing that Keith “seems perpetually angry” and “his checkered employment history is of a piece with his reflexive on-air aggression.”Still, the fact that Olbermann is generating headlines—even with a show that reaches about 200,000 viewers, down from more than 1 million at MSNBC—shows there is still plenty of interest in him as a personality. He has, in fact, put Current TV on the map. The question now is whether he and his new bosses are willing to sail in the same direction.