CNN: Breaking (the integrity of) News

All across America right now, people are celebrating the beautiful victory of democracy, and hailing the dethroning of a leader who has lost favor among the people. I began to wonder: what sources do Americans they have to follow along with the latest updates? How do they view the latest videos? Well, Al-Jazeera is not available, so viewers resort to the largest news network in the country: CNN.

I can say without any hesitation that CNN is providing the absolute best, most in-depth, and up-to-date coverage of their Top Story right now. Unfortunately, while CNN is highlighting a democratic victory, the victor in their story is not Egypt. Instead, their celebrated hero is none other than the Canadian band Arcade Fire. Furthermore, the forum of their victory is not a country’s government, but rather the 2011 Grammy awards ceremony.

Although it has its detractors, CNN generally has a reputation of being at least somewhat unbiased, and is mostly expected to provide news for a global audience. After all, it’s not like the head of CNN just woke up one day and arbitrarily labelled his network the Most Trusted Name in News… that would be silly. In case there is anyone out there who is still deluded enough to buy into that, I present to you Exhibit A, CNN’s current front page:


CNN strongly feels it is important for everyone to know the outcome of the Best Album award…but sees no reason for its readers to know that parliament has literally dissolved in Egypt. Priorities.

Having read the article, I now know exactly how long Pop Music has been unfairly ruling the awards. I know the hardship fans have had to endure as their favorite untalented bands failed to make a dent in the Grammys. Thankfully, I can breathe easy knowing that literally hundreds of people can now live their lives free of the oppression and hardship involved in being a fan of a Grammy-less artist. Words cannot express my joy at this point.

Now, let me be clear: I have absolutely nothing against Arcade Fire. I have never even heard their music. My problem is with how much importance their story was given by CNN relative to other, more pressing stories going on at the moment. I can’t think of too many specific examples of important stories right now, but I did overhear some vague rumours about some sort of mildly glorious upheaval of a half-century long dictatorship. Something like that.

To learn more about the colossal failures of news networks, watch the white knights of news: Mr. Stewart and Mr. Colbert. They will likely tell you (in the most entertaining fashion) that the alternative to CNN, FOX news, is even worse. I won’t get into a FOX rant right now though, as that merits its own extended tirade.

Wake up and smell the Egyptian flowers, CNN. Maybe if your Senior VP spent less time coming up with nicknames for himself (“KC”? Seriously? Where is a harpoon when you need one?), he would have more time to deliver on his responsibility to the viewers.

At this point, I’m fairly certain that Kanye West puts more thought into what he says publicly than CNN does into their front page prioritization.

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6 thoughts on “CNN: Breaking (the integrity of) News

  1. Dead-on and hilariously written. But I would say, before giving Fox too many accolades, that I suspect their coverage might be bent toward possibly suggesting that GWB’s vision for the Middle East with the Iraq and Afghanistan wars is finally coming to fruition, a ridiculous and unsupported assertion at best. I always question their motives.

  2. I agree — I think my Pro Tip identified exactly where Fox News stands in the award category 😉

  3. Dwayne Ali says:

    This all becomes an issue when the responsibility lies not in informing viewers, but in entertaining them, increasing that audience, and satisfying advertisers. You missed earlier in the Egypt event…when CNN decided that Charlie Sheen was the top news story. Welcome to the post-TMZ newsworld.

    Glad you’re posting again. I want more rants.

  4. Thanks Dwayne, glad to hear you’re reading em 🙂

  5. Jed says:

    normally i try to avoid talking politics with people from work, I tend to get myself into trouble. But I’m gonna make an exception here to say you’re ABSAFUCKINGLUTELY RIGHT.

    I can think of half a dozen homeless schizophrenic people that I’ve walked past in the last week (oh the joys of working in SF) whose mumblings are more relevant to what’s going on in the world then the drivel that passes for “news” on america’s major networks. This makes me sad.

  6. Indeed, Jed. A quick peek at the homepage right now reveals the same patterns:

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