Daily Share — Flagship of HLN

So just yesterday, I discovered that The Daily Share was, in fact, on its way… And I found its Twitter account. Today, in a Google search for the show to see if anything interesting would come up… Guess what did?

A job posting for a fall intern for the show (in New York City, no less, which is confusing). The location of the intern isn’t the most interesting part, though. (But it is a part, since the show was said to be based in Atlanta).

The job description delivers a kick in the teeth that the two flagship shows of HLN may not appreciate. Many disagree with me in saying that Morning Express with Robin Meade is the channel’s marquee (and flagship) show; others would argue it is Nancy Grace. Whichever you think the flagship program is…

Wait.

The internship description calls The Daily Share “a brand new show, positioned to be the flagship of HLN.”

Stay tuned.

The Daily Share is on its way

As I mentioned all the way back in April, HLN had announced a block of new programming. The only one with any potential to be interesting was The Daily Share, which had been billed as a nightly news and information show. Since the Jane Velez-Mitchell, Nancy Grace, and Dr. Drew programs are probably safe, I presume it will probably run either 5-6pm (the current slot of a Forensic Files block) or 9-pm (the evening beginning of Forensic Files). I had given up on waiting for this show, as I said again in the beginning of August.

But wait! Hope is not lost.

Brian McFayden, the sports anchor on Morning Express with Robin Meade, sent out a hopeful tweet:

In the picture, he took a selfie in CNN’s Studio 7 (which HLN is moving into soon)… And on the screen was The Daily Share‘s logo. Whether or not he’s hosting the show, or just a contributor, remains to be seen. If he is hosting, then it is safe to say it’ll be taped (since he is still the sports anchor on MXP, and going off the tweet, won’t be leaving the morning show). He could just be a contributor to The Daily Share, though.

Stay tuned!

Time Warner pulls out of Vice deal

Moments ago, Jonathan Mahler broke some pretty big news on Twitter about Time Warner and Vice News…

Developing story, so stay tuned…

(UPDATE 1:20pET) — As reported on the NY Times by Jonathan…

Time Warner has ended negotiations to buy a major stake in Vice Media, according to a person briefed on the discussions.

The two companies started talking in June about the possibility of a joint venture. One scenario included Time Warner’s giving Vice control of the cable channel HLN, which would have provided Vice with a 24-hour network that reaches more than 100 million households.

The conversations collapsed after the two companies were unable to agree on a valuation of Vice, a fast-growing media business with a strong following among millennials.

Last year, 21st Century Fox paid $70 million for a 5 percent stake in the company, valuing the company at more than $1 billion.

A spokesman for Vice was not immediately available for comment.

UPDATE (2:25pET) — HLN’s Morning Express weather anchor Bob van Dillen took to Twitter to comment on the latest HLN/VICE News rumors… And let’s just say, it was quite comical!


Turner to offer buyouts

The news is grim for the employees at CNN Center, and it has been said that many of the workers in Atlanta are very nervous about their futures. And as more news comes out from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, it only sounds worse.

The buyout offers will go to nearly 7 percent of Turner’s 9,000 or so U.S. employees, one executive said.

About a third of the buyout offers will be at CNN. The offers are being made to all employees who are 55 or older and have a certain number of years of service with the company. Participation is voluntary, they said.

Involuntary job cuts will be made later this year, but the number will depend in part on how many employees take the buyouts, they said.

For the sake of the younger employees, hopefully the older ones bite the bullet and take the buyouts.

The article went on to have the normal talking points about Zucker not planning on relocating CNN’s headquarters.

Turner and CNN’s top leadership is largely based in New York as are many of the news network’s anchors. CNN recently moved weekday daytime talent such as Brooke Baldwin and Carol Costello to Manhattan.

But CNN chief Zucker, who’s been at the helm since early 2013, said last year that Atlanta will remain the home and “backbone” of CNN.

Ferguson and the Death of HLN

This week, most of the news coverage has focused in on Ferguson, Missouri. While news organizations haven’t necessarily gone wall-to-wall on this story like they did on Trayvon Martin for example, there has been a overwhelming amount of attention. MSNBC had their resident conflict-of-interest, Rev. Al Sharpton, in the city while Chris Hayes was there as well. Fox News added an additional hour of live coverage at 11 while CNN sent their top anchors to the region. CNN scraped plans to air The Sixties all week in favor of a second hour of Anderson Cooper 360.

However, HLN has not been covering the Michael Brown story with the same intensity as the other news organizations. Actually, HLN rarely covers stories with the same intensity unless it takes place in a courtroom. So, if you wanted to hear the news besides Ferguson, you would think that you could go to HLN, right? Nope, HLN is too focused on other “major” news stories. But wait, on their frontpage right now, there is breaking news! Yes, we’re finally getting somewhere. This is the HLN that Ted Turner started. The breaking news, “COMING TO AN INVITE NEAR YOU: PAY-TO-EAT WEDDINGS.”

Oh good grief.

This column was originally supposed to focus in on the Ferguson story, since the coverage is the latest hot trend for media critics. However, this week’s news about HLN holding talks with The Blaze and the scoop this morning that Robin Meade will be heading to New Day upended all of this.

HLN has always been the second-thought when it comes to the news properties of Turner Broadcasting. It exists in the shadow of its big brother, CNN. Like a younger brother, it could theoretically be as good as its older brother (HLN and CNN share news gathering capabilities), but it isn’t. HLN has always been the kid in the family either doing something unique or trying to “find itself.” It does it quietly and oftentimes we forget it’s there.

HLN was originally started on January 1, 1982, less than two years after CNN. The only reason we have HLN is because of a little-known entity called Satellite News Channel. SNC was built up as the David that would take on the Goliath known as CNN. The cable channel had the news operations of both ABC News (which at the time delivered news other than “Wait Until You See ‘Jerry Maguire’ Child Star Jonathan Lipnicki Now!“) and Westinghouse Broadcasting, best known for their slogan, “Give us 18 minutes, we’ll give you the world.”  The difference between CNN and SNC was that SNC would have what is known as the jukebox format, or a the same stories rotated over and over. According to Reese Schonfeld’s book, Me and Ted Against the World, Turner felt that if he was going to have competition, he should be himself not somebody else. So, HLN, or CNN2 as it was originally known, was hastily built up to mimic SNC’s format and developed what was called the Headlines News Wheel. Within a half hour, the viewer would know the top stories in topics such as business, lifestyle, and sports. HLN was also intentionally designed to not effectively compete against CNN. For example, HLN focused primarily on domestic news and HLN is only rarely shown overseas. In addition, there would not be any rolling coverage on HLN.

Soon, SNC folded and Turner bought the channel in order to expand his reach. However, he was left with two news channels to compete against one another.

Even though this format had its fans, it would in time limit HLN’s abilities. CNN was able to go wall-to-wall on stories like OJ Simpson and gain huge ratings while HLN kept on giving the top headlines. The good part, though, was that if somebody didn’t want to see about OJ Simpson they could watch HLN.

Nowadays, if I don’t want to watch about the shooting of Michael Brown, I can’t watch HLN and see the latest headlines. I have to go online. HLN has become a mockery of itself as it struggles to become something. It starts off in the morning with a caffeinated dose of news and then ends the day with Dr. Drew and his panel, or the Drew Crew, provide medical analysis that is the equivalent of taking a BuzzFeed quiz to see whether or not you have Aspergers. That is unless it’s a Friday, in which case you should look forward to binge-watching Forensic Files for most of the day. The show ran for over a decade, so they definitely have enough episodes to have marathons and so they do.

Now it seems like CNN’s first competitor will be either closing its doors or turning into something unrecognizable, such as Vice News. This may be for the best as CNN now has other competitors to deal with and can’t afford to be losing precious viewers to a channel that is both friend and foe.

Let’s hope everyone is ready for a cable news landscape of wall-to-wall because HLN was our last hope for a reprieve.

Now, back to Ferguson because that’s all there is.

Tyler is an employee at TKNN.info, helping to run @TKNNPolJungle. His views do not necessarily reflect his employer’s.

Robin Meade to New Day?

Breaking news!

Sources say Morning Express anchor Robin Meade is in serious talks to make the jump from HLN to CNN, where she will become the new co-anchor of New Day. I have also been told HLN is finished and it is only a matter of which organization, Glenn Beck’s The Blaze or Vice News, buys them out.

The situation is still very fluid, and I’m not sure on any specifics at this time (such as when Robin starts, the fate of Kate Bolduan and Michaela Pereira, etc) – so, stay tuned!

I have reached out to both CNN and HLN for comment, and will update this post as needed.

HLN and The Blaze held talks

As first reported by The Wall Street Journal, CNN’s stepsister HLN and Glenn Beck’s The Blaze were in talks about creating a joint-venture. A person with knowledge of the situation told the WSJ, “… forming a new venture between CNN-parent Time Warner and The Blaze that would replace HLN’s current programming with Blaze programming.”

However, they go on to report that nothing came of the talks between HLN and The Blaze because they couldn’t agree on the terms.

HLN’s current programming being replaced wouldn’t be much of a loss, except perhaps for Morning Express with Robin Meade (that normally does fairly well in the ratings when there isn’t a huge breaking news cycle [like there is now]) and Nancy Grace. Hopefully, Robin at least would just be upped to CNN if all of HLN’s programming were to be replaced with The Blaze’s.

Definitely something to watch.

(H/t Jordan Valinsky)

Is this CNN/USA or CNNI?

If you’ve been watching the overnight CNN Newsroom simulcast, then you probably wondered if you were watching a news show on CNN…or CNN International. If you haven’t seen it this week and don’t know what I’m talking about, then let’s talk about the live bug. On CNN, the live bug is up all day long, whether the press conference is live or if they’re repeating it. It’s a misleading thing to do, but it’s something that has been ushered in during the Zucker era.

This week on the simulcast? The live bug (which both HLN and CNNI use properly) was up for the entire show, a thing that has never been done on CNNI.

Last night, CNNI was replaying the press conference SecDef Chuck Hagel conducted earlier in the day, and the live bug was up. To a normal CNNI viewer, they would think Hagel was actually speaking live.

So why do it?

Zucker and Co. probably decided if they were going to keep this CNN Newsroom simulcast going, it had to at least look similar to a CNN/USA show — and that means the irresponsible use of the live bug.

Come on, Team CNN International. Don’t be pressured by CNN to do the wrong thing.