Is CNN truly biased? It is a fact that Cable News Network, or CNN, is one of the giants when it comes to major news agencies around the world. It is also a fact that the programs of CNN continue to be the most viewed items on television. One of the reasons why CNN has been a major force in the news is that it constantly reinvents itself. During the presidential elections, for example, CNN introduced another “first” in television news programming—the use of “hologram” technology.
While the news anchor remained inside the studio, a three-dimensional hologram image of the reporter appeared right in front of the news anchor. The technology certainly helps in gaining more viewership as well as retaining the loyalty of its longtime viewers. From all of these, it can be said that CNN is biased insofar as the task of maintaining huge television viewership is concerned. That is perhaps understandable since any news company will cease to exist if its viewership and ratings start to dwindle to the point that nobody is watching the news agency’s television programs.
In terms of news substance, there are cases when CNN appeared to show bias. During the inauguration of President Barack Obama, resource persons were invited. Apparently, all of the resource persons were in some way affiliated with the Democrats or with the African-American cause in the country. There was no Republican or an individual from an opposing viewpoint invited. One can say, however, that a Republican or an individual from other political sides was invited only that he or she refused to accept the invitation.
At any rate, CNN should have made it clear that they sought to balance the scenario by citing their invitations to other individuals whose political viewpoints are not entirely aligned with the Democrats. More recently, CNN reported on the Senate confirmation hearings on the appointment of Sonia Sotomayor before the US Supreme Court. CNN released two separate news articles on the hearings. In the article “Sotomayor Pledges ‘Fidelity to the Law’,” CNN provides a look into the criticisms and praises against and for the nominee (Mears and Hamby).
In the article “Firefighter Criticizes Sotomayor Ruling,” CNN again features one accusation against Sotomayor followed by a set of defenses contrary to the allegations. Apparently in both articles, it is not entirely difficult to assess the bias towards the standing of Sotomayor. For some reason, CNN seems to defend the credibility of the nominee by giving more space for Sotomayor’s defense and by ending each article to the nominee’s favor.
In fact, one of the articles end by stating that Sotomayor is most likely to get the approval of the Senate (Mears and Hamby), as if to sway the perception of its readers by guiding them with a prophetic analysis of the situation. The same strand of bias can be glimpsed from the article “Firefighter Criticizes Sotomayor Ruling”. Towards the end of the article, two paragraphs are devoted in defense of the Supreme Court nominee, as if to answer or dispute the previous criticisms cited in the earlier paragraphs.
These things show, among others, how CNN can lean towards one side of a critical issue without explicitly stating which side the news network supports or adheres to. Of course, the very limited number of evidence that can be raised in support of the argument that CNN is truly biased gives little to minimal effect on the claim. More is yet to be provided. Nevertheless, there is reason to believe that CNN, like many other news agencies in America, tend to favor sides on several occasions, though not all.