Second Guessing…

The New York Times’ Bill Carter writes about CNN’s decision to interrupt the Eric Cantor loss coverage for tape…

Did CNN abdicate its commitment to breaking news Tuesday night when it broke away from live coverage of the primary election upset of Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, in favor of a special about the anniversary of the O. J. Simpson trial?

Not as CNN sees it. The network’s view is that it alone covered the Cantor news as it broke live. It pointed out on Wednesday that both Fox News and MSNBC were carrying their pretaped 8 p.m. shows, hosted by Bill O’Reilly on Fox and Chris Hayes on MSNBC, until several minutes past the hour.

CNN claimed to be first to suggest on the air that Mr. Cantor might lose to the Tea Party candidate, David Brat, when, at about 7:50 p.m., it began continuous coverage of the story. Both Fox News and MSNBC mentioned the Cantor race slightly later, Fox just before 8 and MSNBC at about 8:04.

The decision to switch to the Simpson documentary underscored CNN’s recent commitment to prerecorded programs in its 9 p.m. slot. After years of low ratings at that hour, CNN no longer has a regularly scheduled show with a regular host at 9. CNN executives have also said that the network is not in the business of heavy coverage of partisan political developments.

Oh baloney! Not in the business of heavy coverage of partisan political developments? First of all I’m not so sure this qualifes as a “partisan political development”. Second, what the heck was the network doing in the hour before and the hour after the Simpson special…airing home knitting DIY programming? And what does CNN do every election year? And what catchy name does CNN use to describe it’s political team?

Of course CNN blew it. They had this special which they put together. It was a topical special for that date in history so there was pressure to ensure that special aired that night. But the network blew it. Everyone was saying how this was the biggest political shock in decades…and CNN bailed out to run tape about sensational court cases.

This is the network that doted on and on about a cruise ship with dead toilets…the network that made a mockery of itself in how it wouldn’t (and really still hasn’t) let go of MH 370. And yet, despite going overboard on those stories, it could not stay on this story less than two hours after it broke?

Yes CNN, you blew it.

6 Responses to “Second Guessing…”

  1. The shape of things to come.

  2. “Yes CNN, you blew it.”

    ^^ If your talking about covering all the news, your right, CNN blew it. But the Cantor story was only of interest to political junkies and some of the people in his district.

    It may have been “the biggest political shock in decades” within the beltway but most Americans don’t know Eric Cantor from Eddie Cantor and have know idea what he does for a living. They do however know who OJ Simpson is and what he did 20 years ago.

    The big difference between the Cantor story and either the MH 370 or the cruise ship stories is that most people can identify and relate to with what happened in those stories but not to what happened to or the fallout from the Cantor defeat. Now if Cantor had been caught in an g*y affair or posted n*ked pictures on line then CNN would have been wall to wall on the story 24/7.

  3. harry1420 Says:

    How did CNN blow it? They reported the news. What’s the use of endless yacking and yacking and opining? Yack and opining is what is wrong with “news” channels anyway. Report the facts of the story and move on. I wish there still was a cable news channel that just reported the news and left out all the yacking and analysis and commentary and crap.

  4. if all cable news did was report the news and move on what would they do for the other 23 hours 30 minutes a day?

  5. Fareed Zakaria Defends CNN: ‘We’re Not a Public Charity Here’
    Who knows, before CNN bites the dust we may see “Pledge Week” and auctions. The SIXTIES special already looks like a PBS fundraising show.

  6. angela rodriguez Says:

    Wow. If someone doesn’t know the difference between Eric and Eddie there is plenty of other programming to entertain them.

    If I want to watch the news and hear different opinions (yacking) about it , CNN used to be a reliable place to go.

    There’s lots of us political junkies and the SIXTIES and OJ are not why we would go to a 24 hour news network.

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