CNN's HLN to relaunch as "cable news network for the social media generation"


We’re the radio station for the iPod Generation!

We’re the printing house for the Kindle Generation!

We’re the buggy whip company for the Automobile Generation!


Well, if their headlines are going to be “ripped from social media” they’ve taken yet another giant step away from any content resembling accurate, impartial journalism.

Not that that has troubled CNN for many years now.

But the sponsors must be fed!


HLN will probably turn out to be ABOUT the “social media generation,” rather than FOR them.

That is, it will be what business people and desperate marketing types will go to watch awful hyped-up features about the “social media generation.”

Today on The Cutting Edge: Cyberpunks!


Hasn’t HLN been a shithole for a while now? Glenn Beck had a show on there. Nancy Grace has a show on there.

“I’ve got to go on my Casey Anthony Facebook page and see if my Casey Anthony Facebook friends just saw Casey Anthony make a Casey Anthony face at her Casey Anthony lawyer.”


Whoa. No thanks. I think of watching Wipeout or reruns of Star Trek TNG to be guilty pleasures, suffering faux-outraged liars is definitely not on the list.


“cable news for the social media generation.”

I thought that’s what the Current TV network was (is? do they still do it? that one reporter/anchorwoman “mistakenly” stepped over into N Korea and Clinton had to bail her out was the last I heard about Current.)

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It’s Al Jazeera America, now.

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HLN was actually useful back when it ran, you know, headline news every 30 minutes. It wasn’t glamorous, but it was nice to be able to get a basic read of the news without the emphasis on personalities, commentary, and all that other crap. So as far as I’m concerned they jumped the shark a long, long time ago.

So no, the people they’re claiming to be targeting here are the people who don’t want/need to sit down and watch the news on TV. And pandering to them with some hipster anchor actually saying the words, “OMG, did you peep what Beyonce just tweeted?” is probably going to be as bad as I imagine. Just think of G4TV, where the personalities could spend a whole 30-minute show talking to each other while staring at their laptops. Only with the cred that only CNN can bring.


It’s important to stay hep with the kids; the opening credits of their flagship show can have quick cuts of getting kicked in the crotch, pogs, and that “twinking” dance that they’re all going crazy over.


This is not my original Idea, but it seems that this type of promotion is aspirational, meaning, its really for people who both watch TV and like to THINK of themselves as part of the “social media generation”, which of course justifies the idea that such a demographic is a real thing.

I mean, my mom’s been on Facebook longer than I have and I’ve been on the internet for quite a while now, plus the phrase “Social media” has only been in use for few years now, it sounds like the SMG (OMG!) includes young people who have ALWAYS known FB but that’s too young for what they’re referring to here, and they’ve of course avoided the term Millennials cause… you know… so its got to be for people who watch television and want to feel young, and thereby relevant.

Lame or not, if this new networks means the Boing Boing gang can get lucrative guest expert gigs, they should hold their noses, take the money and run!


"The revamped channel promises to be “cable news for the social media generation.”

Wait…I thought that was The Daily Show and The Colbert Report…


As he’s sometimes been known to do, the Last Psychiatrist has something relevant to add here:
(Head’s up: Its a long read and you can disagree with the politics as I do, yet the analysis of the media is hard to deny)

I’m glad we spent all that money upgrading to HD televisions only to cover the news using shaky low rez video clips from people’s cellphones and quotes taken from twitter.

Which is what I interpret “for the social media generation” to mean for a news network.


It may be too risky a venture but I think it should appear to be broadcasting news.


Which, frankly, is probably the closest thing on TV to what the “social media generation” considers news–that is, actual news, with neutral, unbiased reporting, interviews with guests who are experts in their fields, interview questions which are relevant to the the news story (instead of editorializations, “entertainment” news, and other tabloid fodder), and real investigative journalism.


“one thing I don’t get: the social media generation isn’t watching anything on television”

You know, you can watch “TV” on computers these days… Just because it’s a TV channel doesn’t mean that it’s only going to be available over cable networks. Clips on YouTube, streaming video, Roku/Chrome channels of recorded segments… or at least that’s what I’d be advising them if I were the FOBB they just hired.


Nancy Grace.0
No one ever saw anything more terrible or beautiful.

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How many people from this demographic watch CNN-related content online? How many sign up for the RSS feed or e-mail digest? How many communicate with CNN employees on Twitter?

I think the point here is that it seems strange to cater to an audience that is not paying attention to you, regardless of the medium through which you broadcast.

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