Well, I found an article on the Web about CNN and about the ratings problems it has been having lately. Seems the ratings have been taking a bath with the current prime-time lineup and the focus on covering all the world's disasters, uh, I mean news.
Personally, I think it's inevitable the ratings are down given the subject matter of the stories lately. The folks at CNN like to concentrate on the big international stories, but in recent months those have consisted mainly of covering earthquakes and other misery. There's so much you can take of the Haiti coverage. In fact, I've actually avoided watching any of the Haiti coverage over the past months because I just find the situation there to be just too depressing and hopeless.
CNN has gone straight downhill in the ratings ever since Crossfire was cancelled. In fact, that's one of the main problems over there -- they got rid of too many of their long-standing shows, particularly their political ones. (The Capital Gang is another old CNN show I miss.) Their business coverage has also gone downhill --- they lost Lou Dobbs when he quit last year, and their long-running business shows were cancelled a while ago.
But then again, Lou Dobbs was more of a political talking head by the time he left, too. So really, the reason CNN is getting killed is because the people want to tune into talking heads, and they aren't getting that from CNN. Instead, they're just getting news, and the world news these days can be pretty depressing.
As far as I'm concerned, talking heads are the solution to CNN's problems. If I were in programming at CNN the first thing I'd do is bring back their political shows. These political talkers and pundits may make people angry, but it's better for the ratings if the audience is angry and riled up.