Archive for the CNN Category

Jeff Zucker Speaks…

Posted in CNN on December 1, 2015 by icn2

The Wrap’s Jordan Chariton writes about a CNN Town Hall meeting this morning…

CNN president Jeff Zucker on Tuesday admitted it was a “mistake” to publish a controversial story on the network’s website Monday calling slain Baltimore resident Freddie Gray “the son of an illiterate heroin addict.”

“This was a mistake,” Zucker said at a town hall event for staffers, according to a transcript the network provided to TheWrap. “The digital team removed it last night and inserted an editors note to be completely transparent. The editorial intent as the digital team has laid it out to me was to make clear he had a difficult upbringing. But clearly it did not come across that way when it was written and published. We recognize that. It did not work and we removed it. And were transparent about that. That was a mistake.”

And then there’s this…

Though a network insider who observed the town hall event described Zucker’s comments as an apology and his behavior as conciliatory, a CNN spokesperson disputed that characterization: “He never used the word ‘apology,’ nor any word that evokes apology.”

I’ll buy that it wasn’t an apology but an admission of error. Besides if it was an apology it was directed to the wrong audience. An apology would be directed publicly in the form of a statement. This wasn’t that at all.

CNN Suspends Reporter For Opinionated Tweet…

Posted in CNN on November 19, 2015 by icn2

The Blaze’s Oliver Darcy writes about something that got CNN reporter Elise Labott suspended for two weeks…

A CNN reporter wrote on Twitter that the Statue of Liberty had bowed its head “in anguish” after the House passed legislation strengthening the screening process for refugees fleeing war-torn Syria.

House passes bill that could limit Syrian refugees. Statue of Liberty bows head in anguish @CNNPolitics

— Elise Labott (@eliselabottcnn) November 19, 2015

CNN global affairs correspondent Elise Labott made the remark shortly after the bill passed the lower chamber 289-137.

Most news organizations require reporters refrain from commenting on policy issues in a partisan way.

Not that I think the suspension wasn’t warranted, because it was, but I have to point out that once again CNN is punishing the expendable while other higher value talent can do all kinds of embarrassing things and nothing happens.

Conflict of Interest 101…

Posted in CNN on October 13, 2015 by icn2

CNN’s Dylan Byers “reviews” CNN’s debate.

I’m not going to bother quoting this. Byers was mostly even handed…at least that’s how it appears at first blush. But that’s besides the point.

What on earth is CNN doing letting its employees review its own debate?

It doesn’t matter if Byers was even handed.

It doesn’t matter if Byers gave a fair summary.

What matters is appearances. And the appearances here do not look good.

The only way CNN might be able to squeeze through this unscathed is to do a write up on what everyone else said without adding any firsthand observations…and even then legitimate questions would still be raised regarding which highlights were emphasized and which were ignored. Most of Byers article did just that. But the operative word in the previous sentence is “most”.

But even then Cooper was deft at tempering potential conflict: “You agreed to the debate rules,” he told Webb.

“Deft at tempering potential conflict”? How about just saying it straight like this?

Cooper reminded Webb, “You agreed to the debate rules.”

This is why conflict of interest rules exist…not just to prevent conflicts of interest but to prevent obvious questions being raised about whether some part of the story was allowed and about what parts were ignored…or whether they were deliberately ignored or spiked.

CNN thinks it can navigate this. It can’t. Recusal is the only viable option.

CNN Democrat Debate: Your Reactions…

Posted in CNN on October 13, 2015 by icn2

Post your reactions to tonight’s debate and the coverage thereof here…

Why CNN Changes Things Up With Its Debates

Posted in CNN, FNC on September 29, 2015 by icn2

Mediaite’s Joe Concha wonders why Jake Tapper isn’t doing the Democratic Presidential Candidate debate…

But the real question is: Why isn’t Jake Tapper working this debate as well? He is the face of the network when it comes to all-things-politics.

No he isn’t. He could be. But he’s not. That’s the thing about CNN and politics…it treats politics like it does all its other stories…it floods the zone with too many people covering too many angles.

There is no single go to person at CNN. There hasn’t been since Bernard Shaw retired.

It’s now more of an oligarchy of four to seven people depending on the story. We are talking essentially Wolf Blitzer, Anderson Cooper, Jake Tapper, John King (moreso before he lost his show), Don Lemon (for all the wrong reasons), Chris Cuomo, and Christiane Amanpour.

Who has been anchoring CNN’s election nights the past decade or so? Cooper and Blitzer.

CNN spreads the wealth around to its top guns and has for over a decade. It’s the way the network is now.

CNN’s bench is wider than FNC’s in this regard. That is no slight against FOX…it’s just a fact. CNN overdoes everything including how many chefs it uses for its politics coverage. FNC concentrates its politics coverage amongst a small central core. CNN dissipates it amongst as many top line people as it can get away with, regardless of suitability.

It is as much a difference in style as it is in substance between the two networks.

So I wasn’t surprised to see Cooper and Lemon fronting CNN’s Democrat debate. Would Tapper make the more natural fit? Of course. But so would Blitzer. So would King. At least one or both will get their turn soon enough.

As long as Jake Tapper doesn’t have a prime time show and Wolf Blitzer hasn’t retired, don’t be expecting Tapper to have the lead role in politics coverage. Instead, expect him to be just one of CNN’s more prominent cogs in its big political coverage machine.

Clarissa Ward to CNN…

Posted in CNN on September 21, 2015 by icn2

CNN announced this morning that Clarissa Ward will be jumping to the network from CBS…


Clarissa Ward, one of the world’s most widely respected journalists, is joining CNN as a senior international correspondent. She will be based in London and will report for all of CNN’s platforms, including CNN, CNN International and CNN’s digital platforms. The announcement was made today by CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker.

An award-winning foreign correspondent, Ward comes to CNN from CBS, where she reported for all of that network’s programs, including 60 Minutes and the CBS Evening News. She has covered every major international news story of the last eight years, reporting most recently from Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Afghanistan. She has also reported extensively on the revolution in Ukraine, the Russian incursion into Georgia and the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Her first-hand reporting of Syria’s civil war earned her a Peabody, DuPont, two Emmys and an Edward R Murrow Award in 2015 for her international reporting.
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CNN GOP Debate: Your Reactions

Posted in CNN on September 16, 2015 by icn2

Post your reactions to CNN’s GOP debate, and the coverage thereof, here. That’s if you’re watching of course. I’m not…


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