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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Your Views on the News, September 24, 2010

Recently John Friedman at wrote about ' 12 Broadcasters Who Are Making a Difference, They Create a Buzz and Shape the Public's Opinion'. Only one CNN'er made the list, coming in at number 11.

The print media and Web pundits say television news doesn’t matter any more, right?
You know the argument by heart. Nobody watches. Nobody listens. Nobody cares. Come on — the game is on the Internet nowadays. TV news is the 8-track of the modern media world. Sure, Walter Cronkite was great “back in the day.” But it is the digital age now. Not exactly.
While the advent of the Web has created competitive forces, TV news still has relevance and vitality. No, TV news can’t have the kind of monopoly that the powerful Big 3 — CBS, NBC and ABC — used to boast about decades ago.

I can think of broadcasters who are making a difference. They have a buzz. Viewers notice their work. Other journalists talk about them. Their successes are noted — and, yes, Gawker is likely to take an extra special delight in their flubs.

I’m not saying that any of them is necessarily the best at what he or she does, either. This list goes beyond the Nielsen ratings, critics’ favorites and pedigrees. It is wholly unscientific. It focuses on another kind of aesthetic.

Let me put it this way. If any one of these folks walked through Michael’s restaurant -- the hub in Manhattan for the media industry -- at lunch time, heads would turn. That, more than anything else, is my main criterion for determining who has the buzz.

12) Charles Gasparino, Fox Business Network, and Maria Bartiromo, CNBC (tie) — When Gasparino moved from CNBC to FBN, the blogs acted as if a member of a royal family was changing countries. Bartiromo is the most recognizable face in business TV news. Gasparino and Bartiromo have managed to accomplish something unique: stand out by dint of ability and on-air persona.

11) Anderson Cooper, CNN — Plenty of people are turned off by his shtick of openly empathizing with his story subjects. But he couldn’t care less — and nor should he, or his employer. Cooper has become CNN’s most-recognizable journalist — and he is getting noticed at a time when the network needs all of the good vibes it can get.

10) Erin Burnett, CNBC — Bartiromo may possess the gravitas at CNBC, but Burnett has the bigger buzz.

9) Rachel Maddow, MSNBC — Maddow is the anti-cable star, who disdains preening, shouting and finger-pointing. She is a star because of the rarest commodity in TV news — her intellect.

8) Matt Lauer, NBC — If Tom Cruise had got all red-faced with anyone else at the breakfast hour, would we have made such a big deal out of it? Cruise took on the prince of morning television — and that in itself raised the stakes.

7) The View, ABC — The ladies of the View have elevated the chat show from gossip to news — well, newsy gossip, anyway. What news makers say on the show matters now.

6) Brian Williams, NBC -- Williams is Mr. Consistent, the king of TV news, the heir to Tom Brokaw and, in a sense, a Cronkite of the new century. When Williams took over in 2004 — not so long ago, really — he had to worry about competing against the legacies of such formidable foes as Dan Rather/Bob Schieffer at CBS and Peter Jennings/Charles Gibson at ABC. He has managed to beat back the competition at every turn — no small feat in broadcasting.

5) Oprah Winfrey, ABC — When Oprah exits her show next year, it will rival the moments when such icons of yesteryear as Cronkite and Johnny Carson took their final bows on TV. Nobody will again be as simply beloved as Oprah. Beyond her gargantuan fame and net worth, Oprah’s biggest accomplishment is this: She has reinvented daytime television.

4) Glenn Beck, Fox News Channel — Beck, love or hate him, is reinventing the role of the news anchor as an activist. It’s not a question of whether a news personality can galvanize viewers to action — Beck has shown that he can certainly do just that. Should Beck exercise this power? is it good journalism? Draw your own conclusions and let me know what you decide.

3) Stephen Colbert, Comedy Central — Colbert’s influence as a pundit is on the rise. He is crossing the bridge from entertainer to entertainer/tastemaker. You might say that Colbert is the vice president to Jon Stewart.

2)Katie Couric, CBS — I suppose that Couric would turn more heads at Michael’s than anybody else in the TV news/culture world. That, my friends, is genuine star power. Her career has taken on soap-opera proportions -- and the next installment of “As Katie’s World Turns” will be written when her contract expires at CBS next year. Let the speculation begin (or, more accurately, resume).

1) Jon Stewart, Comedy Central — Everyone else in TV news would kill to have Stewart’s impact. Is there a greater compliment possible? He insists he is an entertainer, before anything else, but inwardly Stewart must positively kvell when Serious People like to call him America’s Most Trusted Name in News.

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Anonymous said...

360 is the only thing that CNN has going
for it right now.I really hope Ken Jautz
will not mess with 360. I think Jon Klein
insisted on putting the talking heads on
360. People don't need to hear from all
sides. People need to hear what is going
on an what is happening and what is out

Anonymous said...

Priceless. Love this. Jon Stewart is the most
trusted name in news because he doesn't insult
his viewers intelligence. He calls out the bs on
cable news that should not be happening in the
first place. Years ago he told CNN to drop the
pundits. Jon Stewart won't let people come on
his show and use misinformation and talking
points. He stands up to the man.It is ironic that
facts matter more to a comedian than CNN.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely Jon Stewart and NY Magazine agrees that he is the go to person of this DECADE.
The Daily Show has become the place to go to for book tours, just to reach his demographic, which is huge and encompasses not only the young and hip, but the baby boomers, who are wise as well.
Anderson Cooper goes where the hype is, so he's the most recognizable anchor on CNN. He creates the buzz himself by his own self promotion on R&K.
He gets credit for being first at "certain disasters" that appeal to him, but viewers are turned off by his lack of credibility when you know his "performance" is ratings oriented.

Anonymous said...

360 missed a golden opportunity last night
at 10. The new MSNBC was horrible.360
wasted 30 on politics and that was all
Lawrence O'Donnell did for the hour and
it was just bad.360 needs to be the alternative
to the same ol same ol and they let a possible
moment of getting back to a million viewers
slip away, Television is a visual medium but
CNN is increasingly getting away from video.

Anonymous said...

I would like to see the original 360. The pace
of the show was faster and it was insightful
and interesting. Right now the content on
360 stinks. Last night's show was a complete
waste and 360 was beaten badly by MSNBC.
Step up Team 360. You are no longer up
against a taped show and you need to be
creative and innovative. Now if you don't
like what you see on 360 you can go to
MSNBC.CNN does a terrible job at finding
3 shows that fit together in prime time.
Piers Morgan & Parker Spitzer are not
a good fit for 360.

Anonymous said...

Where has 360 gone? What happened to
all of the correspondents for the show ?
Where is Anderson's unique style of writing
and bringing you stories you are not seeing
on the others.360 is becoming an interview
show with very little news. There used to be
a wide range of stories on 360. It is as if the
standards for 360 have gone down. This was
once a news show that was not like the others.
How come Anderson did not do a short package
on the lead story instead of the touch screen ?
Where are the in depths and cutting edge
stories? Where is the jam-packed news

Anonymous said...

For the first time in a long time I did not
turn from the lead story on 360. If Anderson
& Team 360 keep this up, the ratings will
rise. It is a lot of buzz around this story and
where did we see it first on 360.

Anonymous said...

@10:20 AM: "The new MSNBC show was terrible at 10pm." Really?
Were we watching the same show?
O'Donnell's show had much more content, was faster paced and lead with the POTUS.
360 lead with some facebook student who was being harassed because of his sexual identity and a big so what.
Did you stay to see the end of O'Donnell's program for his Last Word segment which is really original?? I think not. And guess who won in the ratings...big time.?

Anonymous said...

360 does needs more content and less interviews.
I don't understand the long winded post analysis.
More stories and video and less talk. I think when
360 first started airing on CNN, it had a much
younger staff and an eclectic mix of news. The
suits should have left the show alone.I miss
Isha Sesay. Maybe she can replace Erica Hill
on the show. When 360 was on at 7, it was a
fun show to watch and you got a lot of news.
Even bring back the cool bump music, I could
not believe when I heard The Clash, Joy
Division. Radiohead and others and the
opening title theme Floods.