On June 1st, 1980, Ted Turner and company created something we now take for granted–the 24/7 news cycle. Yes, CNN turns 30 today. As someone who lived in Atlanta (home to CNN’s headquarters) and who holds a degree in broadcast news journalism, I have more than a passing interest in this anniversary.
I am sorry to say, I don’t think the network has aged well. To be fair, CNN is not alone when it comes to practicing what can easily be labeled as sloppy or bad journalism. CNN is not the only network to confuse salacious celebrity focused drivel with news; not the only news organization more concerned with ratings than principles. It just happens to be the one celebrating a big birthday, so…
Here’s a look back at a few of CNN’s hits and misses.
This is what CNN looked and sounded like in 1980 when it first signed on the air:
Live coverage of the 1986 Space Shuttle Challenger disaster:
A report from 1991 on the first Gulf War:
And, from 1994, the OJ Simpson Bronco chase. Pretty sure this is the event that changed everything…
Abuse of the term Breaking News:
For sentimental reasons, I wish Ted Turner would buy back the network he launched back in 1980. Realistically, I know that ship has sailed. Sadly, even the Mouth of the South can’t fix what is wrong with broadcast news today.
What is your primary source for news?