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Archives: June 2013

CNN’s Political Ticker Apparently Hacked

CNN’s “Political Ticker” blog was apparently hacked this afternoon. As noted by Michael Van Poppel on Twitter, a story under the byline of Melissa Gray and Dan Lothian was posted about an anonymous Bitcoin operator going out of business.

The post had a number of red flags, aside from the fact that it wasn’t even about politics. The news item was poorly written, with a number of misspelled words and grammatical errors, and it featured a graphic that was below the quality CNN would typically use. It was also back-posted to June 22nd, so that it would not appear on the first few pages of the blog.

Update from a CNN spokesperson: “A user’s credentials for a third-party publishing platform were compromised and the content of an archived blog post altered. We have corrected the issue and are working with the vendor to ensure the platform’s security.”

CNN took the story down fairly quickly, although it looks like it was on the Political Ticker blog for over an hour. We have a screengrab of the fake item below.

TV news organizations have been ripe targets for hackers in the past, who take over social media accounts and blogs with the hope of spreading false information.
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George Zimmerman Trial Appears To Boost Ratings of CNN, MSNBC, HLN

For the last few days, cable news channels have been covering the trial of George Zimmerman. The most dramatc and newsworthy moment so far has definitely been the testimony of Trayvon Martin‘s friend and the prosecution’s star witness, Rachel Jeantel, who was on the stand Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning.

While the cable news channels have been criticized for spending so much time with live coverage from the courtroom, it appears to be paying off for higher ratings, at least for MSNBC, HLN and, to a slightly lesser extent, CNN.

Let’s get this out of the way first: HLN, which always does well when there is a trial, is seeing strong–although not quite Jodi Arias trial level– ratings, and Fox News, which is the dominant general cable news channel, is still the ratings leader.

Jeantel was on the stand Wednesday afternoon (the ratings for which are here) and Thursday morning, during the 9 AM-1 PM hours. With the exception of HLN, no channel covered the entirety of the proceedings, but rather dipped in and out through those hours… although most of the time seemed dedicated to the trial.

Below are the ratings for Thursday morning.

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The Scoreboard: Thursday, June 27

25-54 demographic (Live +SD)

  • Total day: FNC: 245 | MSNBC: 133 | CNN: 166 | HLN: 279
  • Primetime: FNC: 305 | MSNBC: 189 | CNN: 209 | HLN: 352

4p: 5p: 6p: 7p: 8p: 9p: 10p: 11p: 12a:
FNC
Cavuto:

193

TheFive:

282

Baier:

304

Shep:

219

O’Reilly:

321

Hannity:

281

Greta:

312

O’Reilly:

278

Hannity:

265

MSNBC
Bashir:

95

Matthews:

146

Sharpton:

208

Matthews:

137

Hayes:

165

Maddow:

226

O’Donnell:

175

Hayes:

93

Maddow:

146

CNN
Tapper:

169

Blitzer:

148

Blitzer:

197

Burnett:

180

Cooper:

239

Morgan:

164

Cooper:

225

Cooper:

153

Morgan:

184

HLN
America:

390

Express:

389

Express:

372

Jane:

424

Grace:

448

DrDrew:

336

AfterDark:

271

Grace:

276

Showbiz:

150

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After ‘Today’ Deen Win, ‘GMA’ is Back On Top

A day after NBC’s “Today” had its first outright win in more than 10 months over “Good Morning America,” the ABC show was back on top yesterday. According to preliminary Nielsen numbers, “GMA” had a +597,000 viewer lead and a +31,000 A25-54 demo viewer lead on “Today.”

  • Thursday, June 27, 2013

“GMA” – 5.021M Total Viewers / 1.779M A25-54
“Today” – 4.424M Total Viewers / 1.748M A25-54

ABC News Refreshes ABCNews.com


ABC News is in the process of refreshing its website, ABCNews.com. So far, the network has launched a new homepage and new show pages. We hear that other changes will be rolled out over the next few weeks.

Compared to the old website (above, left) the new site (above, right) features more white space, larger text on headlines and topics, and bigger photos. There is also a prominent “Now” bar, which shows stories and topics that are trending on the site. CNN added a similar bar to CNN.com when it refreshed in April.

Journalists Book Seats on Havana-Bound Flight Again, In Search for Snowden

Reporters from ABC News and Reuters booked seats on a Moscow to Havana flight Thursday thinking that NSA leaker Edward Snowden might be on board. Once again, he wasn’t. The New York Times reports “two dozen reporters and photographers were pressed against the terminal window as the plane backed away.”

Snowden has been holed up at the Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow since Sunday when he arrived from Hong Kong for what was thought to be a quick connection to Cuba, Ecuador or even Iceland. Several journalists also booked seats on a Sunday flight to Havana, only to come up Snowden-less.

“The sooner he chooses his final destination, the better for us and for him,” said Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin on Tuesday.

The Ticker: ‘CTM,’ Claman, Benghazi

MSNBC’s Chris Hayes Takes On Journalists For ‘Double Standard’ Of Intelligence Leaks

On his MSNBC program “All In,” Chris Hayes took aim at journalists that treat leaked information from the government with a double standard. He spends his segment picking on CNN’s Barbara Starr, but as The Huffington Post’s Michael Calderone notes, ABC News, the AP, and Reuters all ran similar stories.

“It is a problem for this country, and for the functioning of our democracy when Glenn Greenwald’s leaked reporting is treated so differently than the Barbara Starr leaked reporting,” Hayes said. “When, as with Glenn Greenwald’s reporting the leaks are not specifically designed to advance the Pentagon’s agenda, then we have shock and controversy and calls for prosecution, but when they are, as with the Barbara Starr reporting, radio silence.

WATCH:

Anchors Away: NBC And CNN Send Hosts On Citibike Adventures

Great minds, as they say.

Let’s say that you are a producer for a morning TV news program. You want your hosts to seem likable and fun. They should be having a good time together, like normal people do. What do normal people do?

If those normal people live in New York City, they are probably trying out the Citibikes, the new public bikeshare system that launched last month in the city.

The result: to close out the 9 AM hour yesterday, Natalie Morales, Al Roker and guest-host Carson Daly rode out of the studio and onto Rockefeller Plaza on the bikes (see photo above).

Meanwhile, it appears as though CNN has decided that a great way for “New Day” hosts Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan and Michaela Pereira to bond on-camera would be to citibike around the Columbus Circle area:
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Back In The U.S. And Freed From Chinese Factory, CEO Makes TV Rounds

Early this week we noted the tale of Chip Starnes, the CEO of an American company being held captive in his factory in China, as workers demanded big payouts for moving some of his production elsewhere. CNN’s “New Day” declared that their interview was an “exclusive,” even though pretty much every other morning show had interviews with him too.

Regardless, Starnes is back in the U.S., and now he is beginning to make the TV rounds to explain what really happened.

CNBC, cleverly, sent a reporter to Newark airport where they caught up with Starnes as he arrived in the U.S., and sat down in what appears to be an airport bar.

WATCH:

NBC’s “Today” appears to have the actual exclusive this morning, with a live interview with Starnes and his family from their home in Florida.

WATCH:
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