“If talent cannot adjust to a less partisan tone and strategy, they could be ousted, three sources familiar with the matter tell Axios.”
CNN has been lurching to the left for years but jumped the shark during the Trump presidency. The network is under new management and is looking to regain some of its lost credibility.
Rumor has it that the first step will be trimming some of the most apparent leftist hacks from their ranks.
Sarah Fischer reports at Axios:
Scoop: CNN evaluating partisan talent
CNN’s new boss, Chris Licht, is evaluating whether personalities and programming that grew polarizing during the Trump era can adapt to the network’s new priority to be less partisan.
Why it matters: If talent cannot adjust to a less partisan tone and strategy, they could be ousted, three sources familiar with the matter tell Axios.
Details: Licht wants to give personalities that may appear polarizing a chance to prove they’re willing to uphold the network’s values so that they don’t tarnish CNN’s journalism brand.
- For on-air talent, that includes engaging in respectful interviews that don’t feel like PR stunts. For producers and bookers, that includes making programming decisions that are focused on nuance, not noise.
Between the lines: CNN’s tone became more partisan and combative during the Trump era and under the leadership of former CNN president Jeff Zucker.
- To conservative critics, some on-air personalities, like Jim Acosta and Brian Stelter, have become the face of the network’s liberal shift.
Brian Stelter and Jim Acosta may be the worst examples. Acosta thinks he is saving the world from Trump, and Stelter spends every waking moment telling people what FOX News is doing. But if Licht is serious about changing CNN, he will have to fire a lot more people. Don Lemon and Jake Tapper are names that spring to mind.
Also, how is CNN planning to keep the viewers who rely on them for resistance TV? Isn’t that their main vertical these days?
Spencer Brown writes at Townhall:
CNN, which didn’t respond to Axios’ request for comment on the evaluation set to take place, is seemingly trying to find some steady ground again to start rebuilding its brand as a news organization rather than a resistance-to-Trump channel.
Licht doesn’t want to necessarily shy away from personality programming, especially in prime time, but he wants to ensure that partisan voices don’t dominate in a way that harms CNN, a source notes.
Licht took the helm at CNN last month, shortly after longtime CNN president Jeff Zucker exited the network in scandal.
His priorities are widely seen as aligned with the leadership of CNN parent Warner Bros. Discovery.
And, as Townhall reported last week, CNN recently added new guidance to limit the number of segments or stories labeled “breaking news.”
But CNN as anything but a progressive shill channel seems like something of an outlet without an audience.
MSNBC may want to consider making some changes as well.
Brian Flood recently reported at FOX News:
MSNBC flops in May: Network had smallest monthly audience since 1999 among viewers coveted by advertisers
MSNBC finished May with its smallest monthly audience among the advertiser-coveted demographic of adults age 25-54 since November 1999, and its lowest-rated month among the demo in primetime since May 2004, as Rachel Maddow’s reduced schedule continues to harm the network.
“Record-low ratings going back to 1999 is almost always a bad sign seeing as how they were then a fledgling network and far less ubiquitous in our bodypolitic,” NewsBusters managing editor Curtis Houck told Fox News Digital about MSNBC, which launched in 1996.
FOX News may lean right, but at least they usually feature voices from both sides of any given political argument.
CNN and MSNBC are entirely lopsided.DONATE
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