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Archive for the ‘CNN’ Category

CNN Ratings Hit 4-Year Low in Total Viewer Average

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TV Newser is reporting tonight that CNN hit new low viewership totals during prime time Friday night (8-11 p.m.) in both Total Viewers and A25-54 viewers.

Up against NBC’s Olympic Opening Ceremony coverage, CNN averaged just 85,000 A25-54 viewers during Campbell Brown (8p), Larry King (9p) and Anderson Cooper (10p). An average that low has not been seen since May, 23, 2001. And the Total Viewer average of 382,000 was the lowest since Dec. 23, 2005.

And while all the cable news channels saw reduced viewing levels due to the massive audience that flocked to NBC — only CNN saw its audience cut in half from Thursday night in both younger viewers and Total Viewers.

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Written by newscycle

February 16, 2010 at 11:02 pm

Posted in CNN, Ratings, TVNewser

CNN Won’t Apologize for Jumping the Gun on Coast Guard Story

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CNN is unapologetic for jumping a story about Coast Guard vessels shooting at a boat near the Pentagon today (9/11) during an appearance by President Barack Obama. The story was incorrect as it turns out, and despite being told twice by the Coast Guard that nothing was going on, CNN ran with it.

This comes right after Obama used a story about Walter Cronkite holding a story about a fire because he did not have confirmation (Walter was right, the story wasn’t what it seemed, and everyone else was wrong.)

Here’s the CNN statement:

CNN staff were monitoring law enforcement activity this morning given the 9/11 anniversary. After hearing a U.S. Coast Guard radio transmission that a boat had breached a security zone on the Potomac River a short distance from the Pentagon where the President had just attended a 9/11 anniversary ceremony, CNN contacted the Coast Guard public affairs office at the agency’s headquarters. The Coast Guard spokeswoman said she was unaware of any activity taking place on the Potomac River.

After hearing a further radio transmission about 10 rounds being expended, and after reviewing video of rapid movement by Coast Guard vessels as the President’s motorcade crossed the Memorial Bridge, CNN reported the story. Simultaneously, during a second phone call, the Coast Guard spokeswoman informed us that its National Command Center and other command posts knew nothing about any activity in the area.

Given the circumstances, it would have been irresponsible not to report on what we were hearing and seeing. As with any breaking news story, information is often fluid and CNN updated the story with the official explanation from the Coast Guard as soon as it was provided.

Uncle Walter would have handled it differently!

During a memorial service for Cronkite two days ago, the president talked about how Cronkite wanted to get the story first, but “he understood the importance of getting it right.” He described how Cronkite was working a story early in his career about an allegedly massive blaze at a city hall. His boss demanded he get on the air immediately. But Cronkite said no, he first wanted to confirm the extent of the fire with the fire department.

“You don’t need to confirm it,” yelled the station manager, “my wife’s watching the whole thing,” and went on the air himself. Cronkite found it was a small fire, not a big one. No fatalities as rumored before.

“He lost his job,” said Obama, “but he got the story right.”

Written by newscycle

September 11, 2009 at 4:49 pm

Posted in CNN, Obama

Did CNN’s Poll Succeed or Fail?

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I always hated poll stories. To me, they were a poor substitute used by news organizations for genuine investigative reporting, which is much harder to do than to hire a pollster to ask silly questions. But they populate our media every week, giving some political junkie on either side of the aisle to parade around for a few days to say “Look, most people think like me!”

Today brings another example of a poll that for this news cycle will bring joy to the right, but is so meaningless its embarrassing.

CNN Opinion Research Poll interviewed 1,136 adult Americans, including an oversample of African-Americans, by telephone by Opinion Research Corporation on July 31-Aug. 3, 2009. The margin of sampling error for results based on the total sample is plus or
minus 3 percentage points.

On Question 3, pollsters asked, “Do you consider the first six months of the Obama administration to be a success or a failure?” Fifty-one percent said “success,” 37 percent said “failure,” 11 percent said “too soon to tell,” and 1 percent had no opinion.

Then it compares a similar poll conducted in August 2001 about then-President George Bush. Fifty-six percent said “success,” 32 percent said “failure,” 7 percent said “too early to tell,” and 5 percent said they had no opinion.

Quickly, this was touted on Drudge as “CNN POLL: After 6 Months, More View Obama Presidency a ‘Failure’ Than Bush…” and on RealClearPolitics as “After 6 Months, More View Obama’s Presidency as a ‘Failure’ Than Bush’s.”

The problem is, only 11 percent got it right this year, as compared to 7 percent in 2001, and now the poll is being touted as proof of Obama’s failure as a president.

You can’t judge any president as a success or failure after six months. It’s ludicrous. We like stories that nurture this instant gratification world. It’s easy to put a number on a president’s success or failure and say “Here it is!” But in reality, Obama’s policies will only be judged for their effectiveness decades down the road.

Six months into Abraham Lincoln’s first term, all 11 states in the South had seceded; the battle of Bull Run had been a disastrous loss, and the country was in the first days of its ugliest war. If we had polls back then, I would imagine his numbers would be worse. But I would also doubt anyone now thinks of Lincoln as a failure — at any point in his life.

You simply cannot judge a president’s success on only six months of work. Sometimes a president’s impact can only be seen through the light of history. Heck, even Nixon is getting kudos for some of his accomplishments 40 years after the fact.

Instead of spending the money on a poll, CNN should do some of the hard work no one else seems to want to do. A start could be actually getting a few reporters to read through the thousands of pages in the various health-care bills, and get insurance and health experts together to analyze them. Then report on what each bill would really do to Americans. Heck, that’s more than our congressmen are doing. It’s harder work, but it’s better journalism.

Written by newscycle

August 6, 2009 at 2:12 pm

Posted in CNN, Polling

Tagged with ,

Was CNN Poll a Success or a Failure?

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I always hated poll stories. To me, they were a poor substitute used by news organizations for genuine investigative reporting, which is much harder to do than to hire a pollster to ask silly questions. But they populate our media every week, giving some political junkie on either side of the aisle to parade around for a few days to say “Look, most people think like me!”

Today brings another example of a poll that for this news cycle will bring joy to the right, but is so meaningless its embarrassing.

CNN Opinion Research Poll interviewed 1,136 adult Americans, including an oversample of African-Americans, by telephone by Opinion Research Corporation on July 31-Aug. 3, 2009. The margin of sampling error for results based on the total sample is plus or
minus 3 percentage points.

On Question 3, pollsters asked, “Do you consider the first six months of the Obama administration to be a success or a failure?” Fifty-one percent said “success,” 37 percent said “failure,” 11 percent said “too soon to tell,” and 1 percent had no opinion.

Then it compares a similar poll conducted in August 2001 about then-President George Bush. Fifty-six percent said “success,” 32 percent said “failure,” 7 percent said “too early to tell,” and 5 percent said they had no opinion, and now the poll is being touted as proof of Obama’s failure as a president.

Quickly, this was touted on Drudge as “CNN POLL: After 6 Months, More View Obama Presidency a ‘Failure’ Than Bush…” and on RealClearPolitics as “After 6 Months, More View Obama’s Presidency as a ‘Failure’ Than Bush’s.”

The problem is, only 11 percent got it right this year, as compared to 7 percent in 2001.

You can’t judge any president as a success or failure after six months. It’s ludicrous. We like stories that nurture this instant gratification world. It’s easy to put a number on a president’s success or failure and say “Here it is!” But in reality, Obama’s policies will only be judged for their effectiveness decades down the road.

Six months into Abraham Lincoln’s first term, all 11 states in the South had seceded; the battle of Bull Run had been a disastrous loss, and the country was in the first days of its ugliest war. If we had polls back then, I would imagine his numbers would be worse. But I would also doubt anyone now thinks of Lincoln as a failure — at any point in his life.

You simply cannot judge a president’s success on only six months of work. Sometimes a president’s impact can only be seen through the light of history. Heck, even Nixon is getting kudos for some of his accomplishments 40 years after the fact.

Instead of spending the money on a poll, CNN should do some of the hard work no one else seems to want to do. A start could be actually getting a few reporters to read through the thousands of pages in the various health-care bills, and get insurance and health experts together to analyze them. Then report on what each bill would really do to Americans. Heck, that’s more than our congressmen are doing. It’s harder work, but it’s better journalism.

Written by newscycle

August 6, 2009 at 10:56 am

Posted in CNN, Polling

It’s Tea Time! Cable Networks More Concerned About Competition’s Viewpoint Than Good Journalism

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While certainly multiple protests around the country are worthy of attention from news organizations, some cable TV journalists have started sniping at each other in regards to coverage. Much of it is predictable, but through the course of the day it has become a bit of a side show.

James Rainey at The Los Angeles Times notes the different perspectives offered by FOX News and MSNBC:

You’d expect conservative commentators like Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity to be hyping today’s wave of anti-tax “tea parties.” But Fox personalities labeled “news” anchors are right there with their blessings too — one telling us the protests will focus on “how much of our hard-earned money is going to the federal government,” another assuring us the tea parties themselves are sparking economic activity.

The Fox promotions people have been pumping up the volume, with ads celebrating hundreds of rallies and citizens who are “demanding real economic solutions.” That’s in contrast, you see, to the fake solutions President Obama wants to foist on the American people. …

That said, some liberal media voices seem just as intent on squelching the protesters before they’ve shoveled a single bag of Lipton into a single pond. At MSNBC, commentators Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow and Chris Matthews wrote off the demonstrations as the work of nothing more than crackpots or political stooges.

I’ve got a novel idea: How about if we wait and see what happens at these rallies? Maybe journalists can watch, report how many people are there, describe the kinds of things they say and tell us what they plan to do next.

CNN correspondent Susan Roesgen became an activist defending the federal government while pretending to cover the event as a unbias journalist. She interrupted one of the protesters and slammed the event for being “anti-government,” “anti-CNN,” and “not really family viewing.”

Roesgen asked a man holding his toddler, “Why are you here today?” The man started to respond saying, “Because I hear a president say that he believed in what Lincoln stood for. Lincoln’s primary thing was he believed people had the right to liberty and they had the right”

She then interrupted him by asking, “But sir, what does that have to do with taxes? What does this have to do with your taxes?” She continued asking questions over his as he asked her to “let me finish my point.” One crowd member was heard to yell “shut up” to the Roesgen.

When the man finished his statement about people having the “right to the fruits of their own labor” and “government should not take it,” Roesgen began arguing with him again and other protesters began to get upset.

She closed by saying “you get the general tenor of this. Anti-government, anti-CNN since this is highly promoted by the right-wing conservative network FOX and since I can’t really hear much more and I think this is not really family viewing. Toss it back to you Kyra.”

Not exactly down-the-middle reporting by a long shot. Her report is here.

MSNBC’s commentators have been hammering FOX all week long, going as low as to use some vile humor in their discussions.

On Tuesday’s “Countdown,” Keith Olbermann played clips of Fox personalities talking up tea parties. “As ever,” he said, Fox was “showing both sides ‘fair and balanced’ — supporting the tea baggers and sponsoring the tea baggers.” Rachel Maddow said that “our colleagues at Fox News are not just reporting on tea bagging, they are officially promoting it.”

David Shuster had this piece:

On the other side of the discussion, FOX is serving up the tea parties by promoting them. “Fox appears to be promoting these events at the same time it is presenting them in a way that looks like reporting,” said Stephen Burgard, director of Northeastern University’s School of Journalism, told POLITICO’s Michael Calderone.

Burgard called the practice “pseudo-journalism,” adding: “We have seen this before from Fox News Channel, but its role as galvanizer of opposition to President Obama’s policies and leadership posture appears to be emerging.”

A Fox spokesperson said the network did not have an executive available to speak about its tea party coverage. A second Fox representative declined repeated offers to address the charge that it was blurring the lines between journalism and advocacy.

While tea party organizers say their movement is nonpartisan, the protests lean hard to the right: Newt Gingrich and Michelle Malkin are on board, as is Freedom Works, an organization run by former Republican Majority Leader Dick Armey. And more than a dozen prominent Republicans were set to participate in tea party protests Wednesday, including South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and a slew of other Republicans from Congress.

Written by newscycle

April 15, 2009 at 5:32 pm

Posted in CNN, FOX, MSNBC

Tagged with , , ,

It’s Tea Time! Cable Networks More Concerned About Competition’s Viewpoint Than Good Journalism

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While certainly multiple protests around the country are worthy of attention from news organizations, some cable TV journalists have started sniping at each other in regards to coverage. Much of it is predictable, but through the course of the day it has become a bit of a side show.

James Rainey at The Los Angeles Times notes the different perspectives offered by FOX News and MSNBC:

You’d expect conservative commentators like Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity to be hyping today’s wave of anti-tax “tea parties.” But Fox personalities labeled “news” anchors are right there with their blessings too — one telling us the protests will focus on “how much of our hard-earned money is going to the federal government,” another assuring us the tea parties themselves are sparking economic activity.

The Fox promotions people have been pumping up the volume, with ads celebrating hundreds of rallies and citizens who are “demanding real economic solutions.” That’s in contrast, you see, to the fake solutions President Obama wants to foist on the American people. …

That said, some liberal media voices seem just as intent on squelching the protesters before they’ve shoveled a single bag of Lipton into a single pond. At MSNBC, commentators Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow and Chris Matthews wrote off the demonstrations as the work of nothing more than crackpots or political stooges.

I’ve got a novel idea: How about if we wait and see what happens at these rallies? Maybe journalists can watch, report how many people are there, describe the kinds of things they say and tell us what they plan to do next.

CNN correspondent Susan Roesgen became an activist defending the federal government while pretending to cover the event as a unbias journalist. She interrupted one of the protesters and slammed the event for being “anti-government,” “anti-CNN,” and “not really family viewing.”

Roesgen asked a man holding his toddler, “Why are you here today?” The man started to respond saying, “Because I hear a president say that he believed in what Lincoln stood for. Lincoln’s primary thing was he believed people had the right to liberty and they had the right”

She then interrupted him by asking, “But sir, what does that have to do with taxes? What does this have to do with your taxes?” She continued asking questions over his as he asked her to “let me finish my point.” One crowd member was heard to yell “shut up” to the Roesgen.

When the man finished his statement about people having the “right to the fruits of their own labor” and “government should not take it,” Roesgen began arguing with him again and other protesters began to get upset.

She closed by saying “you get the general tenor of this. Anti-government, anti-CNN since this is highly promoted by the right-wing conservative network FOX and since I can’t really hear much more and I think this is not really family viewing. Toss it back to you Kyra.”

Not exactly down-the-middle reporting by a long shot. Her report is here:

http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/eyeblast.swf?v=ydSUqGSUaG
MSNBC’s commentators have been hammering FOX all week long, going as low as to use some vile humor in their discussions.

On Tuesday’s “Countdown,” Keith Olbermann played clips of Fox personalities talking up tea parties. “As ever,” he said, Fox was “showing both sides ‘fair and balanced’ — supporting the tea baggers and sponsoring the tea baggers.” Rachel Maddow said that “our colleagues at Fox News are not just reporting on tea bagging, they are officially promoting it.”

David Shuster had this piece:

On the other side of the discussion, FOX is serving up the tea parties by promoting them. “Fox appears to be promoting these events at the same time it is presenting them in a way that looks like reporting,” said Stephen Burgard, director of Northeastern University’s School of Journalism, told POLITICO’s Michael Calderone.

Burgard called the practice “pseudo-journalism,” adding: “We have seen this before from Fox News Channel, but its role as galvanizer of opposition to President Obama’s policies and leadership posture appears to be emerging.”

http://c.brightcove.com/services/viewer/federated_f8/1155201977

A Fox spokesperson said the network did not have an executive available to speak about its tea party coverage. A second Fox representative declined repeated offers to address the charge that it was blurring the lines between journalism and advocacy.

While tea party organizers say their movement is nonpartisan, the protests lean hard to the right: Newt Gingrich and Michelle Malkin are on board, as is Freedom Works, an organization run by former Republican Majority Leader Dick Armey. And more than a dozen prominent Republicans were set to participate in tea party protests Wednesday, including South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and a slew of other Republicans from Congress.

Written by newscycle

April 15, 2009 at 4:39 pm

Posted in CNN, FOX, MSNBC, Tea Party

Fact Checking CNN’s Fact Checking on Obama Meeting Ahmadinejad

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CNN’s fact checking site called misleading the GOP assertion that Sen. Barack Obama has said in the past that he would meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Sen. Joe Biden said at the debate “it is simply not true” that Obama said he would “sit down” with Ahmadinejad.

CNN’s conclusion is that while Obama has said he wouldn’t rule out meeting with any foreign leader, he never specifically said he’d meet with the Iranian president.

But that in itself is misleading.

Here is Obama in a July 27, 2007 debate when he made the famous statement about meeting Iran’s leader without preconditions:

Question, July 27, 2007 debate: In 1982, Anwar Sadat traveled to Israel, a trip that resulted in a peace agreement that has lasted ever since. In the spirit of that type of bold leadership, would you be willing to meet separately, without precondition, during the first year of your administration, in Washington or anywhere else, with the leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea, in order to bridge the gap that divides our countries?

Obama: I would. And the reason is this, that the notion that somehow not talking to countries is punishment to them — which has been the guiding diplomatic principle of this administration — is ridiculous.

And here is Obama in a recent press conference where he confirms his position:

Written by newscycle

October 3, 2008 at 5:31 pm

Posted in CNN, Obama

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