You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

CNN Headline News

The cable net's makeover, which keeps a challenging -- at times even disorienting -- amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6.

The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6.

A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering sports scores, the national weather (sometimes hard-to-identify chips of the U.S. in blazing red), talking points about the new cloning fracas and a headline about a sailor who fell into a volcano. (“He’s OK,” it noted.)

Among the stated aims of the relaunch was a desire to capture more young viewers by presenting the news in a manner appealing to the presumably Web-besotted youth of Generations X, Y and Z.

So the Headline News TV screen does indeed now resemble an Internet home page. The anchor commands only a quarter of the real estate. Filling the bottom third is a running headline tickertape, the weather graphic and either sports scores or stock market news. The top left quarter is usually devoted to a list of bulleted factoids.

It sounds cluttered, and it is.

Virtually no stories are disseminated without supporting video, usually lots of it. The obvious question raised is whether news value or availability of video bites and relevant factoids is determining coverage.

On the plus side, the makeover is an impressive technical achievement, but a paradox remains: The net is simultaneously aiming to coddle those short attention spans and to stretch them indefinitely in order to keep Nielsen eyes tuned in.

CNN Headline News

Production: Presented live from Atlanta and bureaus worldwide by AOL Time Warner/Turner Broadcasting. Executive produce primetimer, Will Robinson; producer, general manager/exec veep, Teya Ryan. 24 hours everyday.

More TV

  • Carrie Stein to Head Up Scripted

    Carrie Stein to Head Up Scripted TV at Kew Media

    The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6. A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering […]

  • Thomas Ebeling to Step Down as

    Thomas Ebeling to Step Down as Head of Germany's ProSiebenSat.1

    The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6. A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering […]

  • Diana RossAmerican Music Awards, Show, Los

    TV Review: The 2017 American Music Awards

    The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6. A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering […]

  • Amazon Strikes International Output Deal With

    Amazon Strikes International Output Deal With AMC Studios

    The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6. A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering […]

  • Charles Manson Hospitalized

    Charles Manson Dies at 83

    The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6. A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering […]

  • Shawn MendesAmerican Music Awards, Show, Los

    American Music Awards 2017: Complete Winners List

    The cable net’s makeover, which keeps a challenging — at times even disorienting — amount of information on the screen at any one time, turns news-watching into a sort of information-retention parlor game. The new look bowed Aug. 6. A random moment from the net’s first 24 hours of revamp found the screen simultaneously offering […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content