CNN Sans Zucker: Follow Real News And Opinion

Where does CNN go from here now that Jeff Zucker has bolted? Is it more about figuring out how to launch a streaming platform -- its forthcoming CNN+ -- or a broader view of what direction CNN needs to take in terms of news and opinion content?

No doubt content such as former top anchor Chris Cuomo doing public relations work behind the scenes to help his brother, the former New York State Governor, while being a straight-ahead news host -- and that wasn’t a good look.

More broadly, many complain that Zucker placed too much emphasis on the travails of former President Donald Trump in recent years. In fairness, some of this had to be covered. Trump himself said a long time ago -- the first time he ran for president -- that news organizations benefit from following him.

Yes, indeed. But at what expense?

This is where tightrope-walking 24/7 cable TV news organizations live. As a result, fact-checking operations grew steadily, including some in real-time. Will all this continue to produce high viewership and bring subsequent advertising dollars?



Perhaps shifts in news coverage are needed -- not just in terms of policy and politics, but more around money, and of course, potential criminal activity. Trump's main business is no longer real estate, hotels, and golf courses. It's politics.

Reports now say that Trump has a political war chest of $122 million -- more than the Republican National Committee itself -- all because of fundraising after the November election and through the January 6 insurrection.

Add in this factor: Journalists are always looking for reliable sources for information. And over the years, Trump, for many, isn't that.

It has been more about blind emotion, anger, resentment -- which can also foster questionable news content.

It isn't just mostly straight-ahead journalism-minded news organizations that have to contend with this, but less stringent not-so-journalistic social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook and others.

So what then? As MSNBC's Rachel Maddow has put it -- as well as other many calm observers of history over a decade: Don't focus on what they say -- watch what they do.

Maybe look at it from a narrower perspective, from a related TV advertising and promotional view -- follow the money.
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