Report: CNN Contemplating a Radical Change of Direction to Revive Ratings

Aug 13, 2012  •  Post A Comment

CNN is looking at a change in its programming approach that some insiders are comparing to MTV’s move away from music programming years ago, the New York Post reports.

Among other possible changes, CNN is reportedly talking with producers of reality shows to help boost the network’s ailing ratings. According to documents obtained by the Post, CNN is also working on a late-night talk show that would feature a panel, in addition to five new reality shows that would air on Saturday and Sunday nights.

The reality shows would be packaged with a new program from celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain, who will debut a Sunday night show on CNN in early 2013.

CNN is also looking for on-air personalities aside from TV news types, with Bourdain marking the "prototype" for the kind of star CNN wants to add to its lineup, the story notes.

The change is being compared to when MTV decided to stop airing music videos because the strategy wasn’t working any longer, the story says, citing an outside producer who has met with CNN executives.

The only CNN host who appears to be safe from programming changes is Anderson Cooper, the story says, citing people who have spoken with programming executives.

A representative for CNN declined to comment.


  1. NO, CNN! NO! Say it isn’t so!!!
    Who is running that network? An MTV exec?
    CNN stands for Cable News Network. Perhaps, if CNN wants their ratings back, they should try going back to doing NEWS.

  2. Reality shows?? Celebrity chefs????? Is this some sort of sick joke? I don’t have cable anymore, so I haven’t watched CNN much lately, but I thought they already have been trying to un-news the channel, and it’s gone straight into the toilet. If celebrity chefs is what they are seriously considering, I can only suggest they take some advice from one of the most successful celebrity chefs:
    “IN THE FU@

  3. thats “IN THE BIN!”

  4. I thought their BIG change would be to do actual news again. Do yourselves a favor, pull the plug and take Faux News with you. The world will improve as a result.

  5. Quit Whining! THere is no news on any of the “news” channels after 8pm (5pm out here on the west coast) O’Reilly and Hannity, Maddow and O’Donnell, Cooper and Burnett are really not news shows. They are closer to Snooky than news. At least Headline News has Showbiz Tonight.

  6. Digital Guy, you are right. But that is what we are whining about. Just a small sliver of truth in advertising would be nice. Cable News should be news, Music TV should be music and History should be history. These guys have lost their f*cking minds if they think this will work in their favor.

  7. Headline (bloody) News is a scandal-mongering dog of a network–and now CNN will follow suit. I always thought REAL NEWS was REALITY–not these trumped-up, sleazy scripted shows with idiots, tarts and whores populating the Boob Tube…whither goest CNN?
    At least Ted Turner has some class with TCM–the best movie channel on TV.

  8. Hey CNN execs! Remember stand-up comedian D.L. Hughley, who hosted and wrote what was billed as a “comedic news-show” on your network in 2008-09? Oh yeah, that’s right, the one that got panned and cancelled after several painful months… but you weren’t around yet. Try researching your network and stop trying to re-invent the wheel. Stick to news and leave the leanings, etc. to the other channels. You are still the “king” (sorry, Larry) when a crisis hits.

  9. The DL Hughley Show was the best show on CNN. Too bad it was cancelled after one season.

Your Comment

Email (will not be published)