CNN: “Way Off The Rails”

From AJR, December/January 2011 issue
CNN’s prime-time lineup reflects a network in disarray.
Posted: Thu, Dec. 9 2010

By Deborah Potter
Deborah Potter ( is executive director of NewsLab, a broadcast training and research center, and a former network correspondent.

A disgraced ex-governor, a talent show host and an Oprah wannabe. Not a bad guest list for Letterman, perhaps, but as prime-time anchors on a cable news channel?

This is what’s become of CNN.

The one-time cable news leader has had a horrible year. Over the summer, viewership in prime time hit a 10-year low. “Larry King Live,” once the channel’s biggest draw, had lost almost half its audience from the year before. Bad enough that CNN has trailed Fox News Channel in the ratings in every part of the day for almost a decade; in prime time it’s now fallen behind MSNBC as well.

Something had to be done. But did it have to be this? READ MORE at American Journalism Review


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