April 13 at 11am ET

Colbert to succeed Letterman on CBS; Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) on the Time Warner Cable/Comcast merger; A look at how Chinese media are covering the search for Flight MH370.
April 14th, 2014
01:53 PM ET

From Brian: 6 takeaways from April 13 show

If you weren't able to tune in on Sunday, here were some of the moments that really stood out to me:

1. Senator Al Franken joined me to discuss his opposition to the proposed Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger, days after he participated in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about it. Franken said some influential opponents of the merger — other major media companies — are staying quiet because they are "afraid of retaliation:"


STELTER: There are CEOs of big media companies that own lots of cable channels that are very concerned about this merger, but we haven't heard them speak out.



FRANKEN: Well, that speaks volumes about how anti-competitive this is. You know why they don't speak out? They come to my office and say, 'This is off the record.' Then they talk about how it's going to be anti-competitive, but - 



STELTER: You can't name names, then?



FRANKEN: No. They're afraid of retaliation. Doesn't that tell you everything you need to know?

Here's the rest of the interview.

2. "What cameras do for people and what shows like this do for people is, they give them two things. They give them profile and they give them access. And profile and access equals influence, especially in this town. But it's also the dangerous part of it, because, again, what are you using your podium, your platform for? Is it to inform the audience? Is it to persuade the audience? Is it to feather your own nest? Is it to run for office yourself someday, whether you declare that or not? And that's what the public has a right to know." —Frank Sesno, director of the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University, discussing the ethical quandaries that exist when television personalities engage in political activities.

3. Keli Goff and Michelle Fields had quite a debate about Stephen Colbert, who will be succeeding David Letterman as the host of "The Late Show." Fields asserted that "Colbert's main goal isn't just to entertain. It's also to push a political agenda." Here's the video of the segment.

4. After the debate, I asked TV talk-show legend Dick Cavett if he thought CBS was taking a big gamble by bringing Colbert over from Comedy Central. Cavett answered, "If they are, it's probably the best gamble anybody ever took. I can't think of anybody more qualified, or if there ever has been anyone more qualified to do this show than Colbert." Here's what else he had to say...

5. I asked Al Franken about Colbert too, and he said: "I think Stephen is just brilliant, and I think every comedian and every satirist feels the same way. I think it's a great choice. It's going to be interesting to see him do it as himself. I mean, this is - and not in character." 



"He's going to have to really reinvent himself," I said.


"Well, and isn't that a great thing, to reinvent yourself?" said Franken, the "SNL" comedian turned senator.

6. What's it like to work for a cable news channel owned by the Chinese government? "We feel that it's important to include China in the mix in stories where China is relevant," Jim Spellman, a former CNN correspondent who now works for CCTV America, told me. Earlier, we had been talking about media coverage of the missing Malaysian Airlines plane.

"So the plane is absolutely relevant," he said. "Something like the Ukraine, the Chinese position is essentially nonintervention. So, that will be in some reports, but they aren't going to be driving the day-to-day of the story. We are more likely to include, say, them in context of the Security Council votes in the U.N. But we certainly are not given and I have never received any type of memo to, you know, reflect some sort of party line." Here's the full interview.


Hope you'll tune in next Sunday at 11 a.m. Eastern!

–Brian


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 13th, 2014
01:22 PM ET

The British are coming

A final thought from Brian Stelter about the influx of executives joining American media organizations from across the pond. Also, a look ahead to Monday's Pulitzer Prize announcement; should NSA reporting be honored?


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 13th, 2014
01:04 PM ET

The Chinese perspective on MH-370

CCTV America correspondent Jim Spellman tells Brian Stelter how the state-run Chinese network has been covering the story of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.


Filed under: Blog • Reliable Sources
Alaska newspaper sold to online rival
April 9th, 2014
11:45 AM ET

Alaska newspaper sold to online rival

By Brian Stelter, CNN

Five years ago, the largest newspaper in the state of Alaska, the Anchorage Daily News, published a skeptical Q&A with the editor of a startup news Web site called the Alaska Dispatch.

At the time the Dispatch was a part-time job for its founders. It was accepting donations from readers to pay for Web servers. The Anchorage Daily News editors asked if the Alaska Dispatch was "a business or a hobby?" and if "a blogging project like Alaska Dispatch is sustainable?"

It's clearly no longer a hobby. And it apparently is sustainable. On Tuesday, the Alaska Dispatch boughtthe newspaper for $34 million.

The sale is further affirmation of the rise of digital news operations. It appears that no other similarly-sized newspaper has been swallowed up by an online rival. (Amazon (AMZNFortune 500) CEO Jeff Bezos bought The Washington Post as a personal investment.)

Read more of Brian's story online here.

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Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 6th, 2014
01:16 PM ET

Web Exclusive: Hillary Clinton and the double standard in the media

In the video above, Brian Stelter talks with CNN's newest political analyst: Politico senior political reporter Maggie Haberman.

"The double standard is alive and well, and I think in many respects the media is the principal propagator of its persistence." A powerful critique of the media from the woman who may very well be the Democratic nominee in 2016: Hillary Clinton. She spoke at the Women in the World Summit earlier this week, where her comments on sexism and gender bias had many people asking: is there still a double standard in the coverage of women in the media?

The fifth annual Women in the World Summit kicked off on Thursday, where Clinton, along with IMF managing director Christine LaGarde, participated in a conversation about their experiences as women in power. When asked what advice she would give young women who want to "rise up in the world," Clinton spoke about how to handle criticism:

"You should take criticism seriously because you might learn something, but you can’t let it crush you. You have to be resilient to keep moving forward despite whatever the personal setbacks and even insults that come your way might be. That takes a sense of humor about yourself and others, believe me this is hard-won advice...that I am now putting forth here."


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 6th, 2014
01:15 PM ET

Web Exclusive: Malaysia Flight 370 and Miles O'Brien's personal journey

Brian Stelter talks with CNN aviation analyst Miles O'Brien about the missing Malaysia Airlines flight and his own personal journey covering this story.


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 6th, 2014
12:57 PM ET

TV rocked around the clock

"Inside Edition" host Deborah Norville talks with Brian Stelter about this week's two big TV moves: Josh Elliott's abrupt departure from "Good Morning America" and David Letterman's retirement announcement.


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 6th, 2014
12:49 PM ET

Red news, blue news

CNN political commentators Ben Ferguson and Marc Lamont Hill throw away their talking points and join Brian Stelter for a fair and balanced discussion about how "Obamacare" has been covered on the left and the right.


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 6th, 2014
12:36 PM ET

Show me a story

Brian Stelter looks at a collection of stories from this week that prove a picture is worth a thousand words.


Filed under: Reliable Sources
April 6th, 2014
10:15 AM ET

Sneak peek at this Sunday's show

Good morning! Today on "Reliable Sources," we'll have an update on the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, then turn to the biggest media stories of the week.

I feel like I spent all week covering the revolving door of television, between Josh Elliott's defection from ABC to NBC and David Letterman's retirement announcement. So on today's show, Deborah Norville, the host of "Inside Edition," will join me to talk about both. (Here's a preview.)

I'll also bring in two CNN political analysts, Ben Ferguson and Marc Lamont Hill, to assess this week's Red News, Blue News: the Obamacare enrollment deadline.

And I'll speak with CNN's Carol Costello, who wrote this thought-provoking op-ed about how the media treats people when tragedy strikes.

At the end of today's program, I'll introduce a new segment, Show Me A Story, featuring some of the most striking news photographs of the week. Let me know what you think of it.

By the way, we've had to hold a couple of other segments we prepared - one with Maggie Haberman, another with Miles O'Brien - due to time constraints, so we'll share those on CNN.com. We'll post the links here later today.

See you at 11 a.m. Eastern time!

–Brian


Filed under: Reliable Sources
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