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It's scary to imagine Atlanta without CNN (It Is?)
Atlanta Journal-Constitution ^ | October 12, 2003 | Colin Campbell

Posted on 10/15/2003 3:09:46 PM PDT by Timesink

It's scary to imagine Atlanta without CNN

Colin Campbell - Staff
Sunday, October 12, 2003

Those mocking billboards across the street from CNN headquarters must make the people inside cringe.

The signs are the work of Fox News, which doesn't just love to brag about itself (TV generally is a shameless self-promoter) but which also loves to tweak the competition.

The latest billboard --- signed by "your friends at FOX News" --- says, "Come Home Connie --- CNN Needs You."

The reference is to Connie Chung, the former broadcast news star who was hired by CNN to boost its ratings, then replaced with Paula Zahn, who hasn't boosted the ratings either.

TV news is a world of splash and zoom and noise, of celebrities and skin as well as current events. It's only natural that Fox, with its background in British tabloid journalism, has been quite clever at this game. Fox is slick, like a train wreck. It plays the underdog and it flies a million American flags.

The war for ratings between CNN and Fox seems a spectator sport, in some ways. Yet it's difficult, with CNN in Atlanta, not to feel for the network.

Talented people have been laid off, people you wish would stick around. They and CNN have helped make Atlanta a more interesting place. Ted Turner's CNN also helped put Atlanta on the world map, along with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Jimmy Carter, the airport and the Olympics.

A couple of years ago, though, CNN fell behind Fox in the ratings, and lately the ratings have kept sliding.

In the early 1980s, before it started making money, CNN was geeky but it was also feisty and ambitious and technologically hip. All that --- plus low costs --- helped propel CNN's rise. So, of course, did a lack of cable competition.

By the time of the first Gulf War, CNN seemed on top of the world. Maybe that's where its problems started.

The network got rather full of itself. The big earnings weren't reinvested in news gathering --- or so say disappointed newsies. People such as Fox's Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes noticed.

CNN also came under fire for Turner's internationalism, and there have been waves of problems since: new competitors; the sale of Ted's empire to Time Warner, which ushered in years of turnover, including boss after boss and vision after vision; the tension between the Atlanta office and offices in New York and Washington; then AOL, whose "synergism" fizzled; the dot-com bust; the plunge in the parent company's stock prices; and then the increasingly popular Fox, whose strategy and management have seemed pretty stable.

Maybe Fox will keep gaining viewers at CNN's expense, and maybe piles of advertising money will follow. Maybe viewers will get sick of being bombarded with news. Companies, in any case, will consolidate, get sold, flop or find new niches.

It's impossible to predict in detail. But it would be rash to assume that CNN will overlook Centennial Olympic Park forever.

My bottom line for now is largely local.

It was sad, and a loss for Atlanta, to watch Turner's lively and creative enterprises taken over by a huge corporation that's more than $20 billion in debt. And it's sad to watch CNN floundering.

Atlanta would be a big loser if CNN's troubles got worse.

ccampbell@ajc.com


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events; US: Georgia
KEYWORDS: atlanta; billboard; cablenewsnetwork; chickennoodlenews; cnn; cnnschadenfreude; foxnews; mediaschadenfreude; schadenfreude

1 posted on 10/15/2003 3:09:47 PM PDT by Timesink
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To: martin_fierro; reformed_democrat; Loyalist; =Intervention=; PianoMan; GOPJ; Miss Marple; Tamsey; ...

Schadenfreude

This is the New York Times CNN Schadenfreude Ping List. Freepmail me to be added or dropped.


2 posted on 10/15/2003 3:11:29 PM PDT by Timesink
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To: Timesink
Yes, we should remove CNN, and then the AJC.
3 posted on 10/15/2003 3:11:35 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: Timesink
Wait - am I supposed to feel sorry for CNN or something?
4 posted on 10/15/2003 3:12:00 PM PDT by CheneyChick (Let the Hauskleaning Begin)
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To: Timesink
I thought Coca-Cola put Atlanta on the map.
5 posted on 10/15/2003 3:12:32 PM PDT by Mears
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To: All
Thank you Freepers!

6 posted on 10/15/2003 3:12:51 PM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: Mears
Civil War.
7 posted on 10/15/2003 3:13:01 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
CNN ---> Gone With the Wind?
8 posted on 10/15/2003 3:13:36 PM PDT by CheneyChick (Let the Hauskleaning Begin)
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To: Timesink
It's scary to imagine Atlanta without CNN

No it isn't. This would give me another good reason to visit Atlanta.

Actually it would be better and more in character if the head offices of both Foxnews (New York City) and CNN (Atlanta) swapped locations.

9 posted on 10/15/2003 3:13:55 PM PDT by Paul C. Jesup
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To: CheneyChick
You voiced my hope!
10 posted on 10/15/2003 3:15:18 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Here's a picture:


11 posted on 10/15/2003 3:16:23 PM PDT by CheneyChick (Let the Hauskleaning Begin)
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To: Timesink
Gee, CNN's fall can't have anything to do with the fact that some Americans might be getting fed up with their anti-US propaganda, can it?
12 posted on 10/15/2003 3:16:53 PM PDT by Sofa King (-I am Sofa King- tired of liberal BS! http://www.angelfire.com/art2/sofaking/)
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To: CheneyChick
Looks like Rhett and Scarlett are standing in Centennial Olympic Park. :)
13 posted on 10/15/2003 3:17:28 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: Mears
I thought Coca-Cola put Atlanta on the map.

I thought it was Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler.

14 posted on 10/15/2003 3:17:49 PM PDT by scouse
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To: scouse
Frankyly, Rhett probably doesn't give a d*mn about CNN.
15 posted on 10/15/2003 3:20:38 PM PDT by CheneyChick (Let the Hauskleaning Begin)
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To: Sofa King
While I haven't LIKED CNN for quite some time, I wouldn't have decided never to watch them again if they hadn't become whores for Saddam Hussein in pre-war Iraq by their own admission.
16 posted on 10/15/2003 3:21:41 PM PDT by johnb838 (sarcasm tags are for wimps)
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To: Timesink
Fox is slick, like a train wreck.

Huh?

17 posted on 10/15/2003 3:22:16 PM PDT by Califelephant
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To: Timesink
Ted Turner remains the overwhelming reason I hate the %*!#$&#!& Braves.
18 posted on 10/15/2003 3:30:25 PM PDT by newgeezer (Last time the Cubs won it all, Wrigley Field did not exist. Radio hadn't been invented. ...)
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To: newgeezer
Aw come on now, Ted Turner isn't that affiliated with the Braves. I mean, its not like they named the Stadium after him....
19 posted on 10/15/2003 3:35:49 PM PDT by jmcclain19
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To: CheneyChick
As Scarlett would say: "Ah! Fiddle dee dee...Ah'll think about it tomorrow".:^)
20 posted on 10/15/2003 3:40:11 PM PDT by scouse
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To: Timesink
>>Fox is slick, like a train wreck<<

BWAAAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!
21 posted on 10/15/2003 3:41:13 PM PDT by Humidston (Do not remove this tag under penalty of law)
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To: Timesink
Turner is one of the larger employers in town, and there would be a hit to the local economy if they left (speaking as a former CNN employee), but what the hey.

Colin Campbell (the author) is an asshole anyway.

22 posted on 10/15/2003 3:51:18 PM PDT by mhking (When it rains it pours: I'm looking for a job again -- any offers or help: mhking@bellsouth.net)
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To: Timesink
I'll admit that I would go over to CNN and Msnbc during breaking news just for confirmation or video footage. If CNN beat Fox then I would keep checking all sources. Fox and Msnbc kicked Cnn's butt during the Iraq war this latest time. Now, I don't even have any of them because Laci and Kobe drove me away from all of them. :-)
23 posted on 10/15/2003 3:58:07 PM PDT by Normal4me
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To: Sofa King
Gee, CNN's fall can't have anything to do with the fact that some Americans might be getting fed up with their anti-US propaganda, can it?

Now, what would give you that ridiculous notion? Can't you understand that Maybe viewers will get sick of being bombarded with news.

Sick, sick, sick.
Tired, tired, tired.
I'll go watch Wheel of Fortune and see if my husband wants to talk about my "buy a vowel" strategy (only shop for "U"'s -- you can guess at the rest) instead of the progress we're making in Iraq or Jay Rockin'fella's idiotic take on the war.
Yep, yep, yep. Way more interesting than the latest stupid dem trick.

24 posted on 10/15/2003 4:02:16 PM PDT by reformed_democrat
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To: Timesink
It plays the underdog and it flies a million American flags.

OMG what a crime!

25 posted on 10/15/2003 4:23:24 PM PDT by Yo-Yo
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To: Timesink
No it isn't sad. One can only hope they flounder until the French buy them.

The arrogance of this writer as he avoids how CNN has driven away most conservatives who watched it until Fox came on the scene.
26 posted on 10/15/2003 4:26:36 PM PDT by Grampa Dave (Fight Liberalism 24/7/365 for only 17 cents / day. Donate $5 monthly to Free Republic.)
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To: Timesink
Ted Turner's vision was a news network that would bring truth to the people of the world.

Instead, it became an organ for propaganda.

The wordly hope men set their hearts upon
Turns ashes, or it prospers, and anon
Like snow upon the desert's dusty face
Lighting a little hour or two was gone.

27 posted on 10/15/2003 5:37:20 PM PDT by Savage Beast (Has the Fall of California been averted--or merely postponed???)
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To: Timesink
Rupert Murdock told Ted publically that Fox would eat his lunch.

Ted laughed.

Hey Ted, stay away from sharp objects.
28 posted on 10/15/2003 5:40:31 PM PDT by MonroeDNA (Please become a monthly donor!!! Just $3 a month--you won't miss it, and will feel proud!)
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To: Timesink
Atlanta without CNN?
Scary?
To the Dems, yes.
Atlanta might actually improve some!
(Heck, anything without Communist News Network will improve alot!)
29 posted on 10/15/2003 6:02:59 PM PDT by Darksheare (Resistance is futile, but we may be placated with chocolates and shiny trinkets to add to our hord.)
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To: scouse
Thanks for the laugh,Scarlett and Rhett would have done the job.
30 posted on 10/15/2003 6:49:31 PM PDT by Mears
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To: newgeezer
"Ted Turner remains the overwhelming reason I hate the %*!#$&#!& Braves."

I'm glad to see you feel the same way. Some people think this is quite irrational thinking. I guess only true Turner haters can understand...

31 posted on 10/15/2003 7:51:45 PM PDT by Paulie
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