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News Analysis Feb 24, 2022 1:27 AM EST

CNN to change course and start acting like a news channel

"I would like to see CNN evolve back to the kind of journalism that it started with, and actually have journalists, which would be unique and refreshing," Malone said.

CNN to change course and start acting like a news channel
Nick Monroe Cleveland, Ohio

Establishment media are up in arms about the plans CNN's new management has in store to bring the troubled network back on track when it comes to reporting the news.

A new report says Discovery's board member John Malone will "play a huge role" in steering CNN back on course, specifically in a direction away from what previous network head Jeff Zucker delved the outlet into.

Billionaire John Malone made his personal feelings on it all clear back in a November 2021 interview with CNBC.

He said at the time:

"I would like to see CNN evolve back to the kind of journalism that it started with, and actually have journalists, which would be unique and refreshing. I do believe good journalism could have a role in this future portfolio that Discovery-TimeWarner's going to represent."

This transition process for CNN started back in May 2021 when parent company AT&T agreed to a merger of Warner Media with Discovery worth $43 billion dollars. This new company was agreed to be helmed by Discovery CEO David Zaslav, who vowed to keep CNN around.

Malone is a shareholder in Discovery, as a point of reference for his stake in the transition deal.

More recently, places like Raw Story want it known that Malone's background includes him being a donor to former President Donald Trump. Further they note that Malone believes even though Trump wasn't the "right guy" in some respects, he ended up identifying a lot of societal issues.

The New Yorker profile of Malone calls him an adversary of Rupert Murdoch on one hand, but a libertarian who is one of the largest private landowners in the United States on the other. The outlet warns about the consolidation of media infrastructure that this WarnerMedia and Discovery merger has in store.

But this takes us back to the drama of CNN. With the ouster of Chris Cuomo and the subsequent removal of Jeff Zucker, the money to be had from the Discovery merger seems to intensify the former anchor's litigation against his old job.

The way that The New York Times puts it is how Jason Kilar of CNN's parent company WarnerMedia were the ones that put people like Jeff Zucker on the outs. At the end of his time at the company, Zucker begged Kilar to stay around until the merger with Discovery was complete.

Kilar said no.

The Atlantic blames the breach of ethics by Jeff Zucker as what ended the sterling reputation of CNN, and the fact that he ended up sleeping with someone at the company who themselves were connected to former Governor Andrew Cuomo at an earlier point in her career, and helped to prop up a pandemic-era charade.

But on a broader scale, the main dilemma facing CNN is getting people to tune in, in the first place.

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