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CNN Says Adios to Live Online Anchors (and Lou Dobbs)

It turns out the on-air resignation by CNN anchor Lou Dobbs was part of a more sweeping change, including a shift away from online anchor-driven news. The rolling news broadcaster, part of the Time-Warner empire, announced yesterday that it had dispensed with the services of Reggie Aqui, Nicole Lapin, Naamua Delaney, and Melissa Long, plus an unspecified number of production staff. Perhaps CNN head honcho Jon Klein inadvertently gave us all a heads-up on this last month—in which case, how do you explain this?

Anyway, enough of the picking of nits. Let's go back to a CNN without Lou or rolling, anchor-based web news: which one are we going to miss the most? The channel is down to fourth in the news channel ratings—that's last, pop pickers—and Klein has obviously realized that things need to change.

The truth is that, these days, people get up-to-date news from their computers rather than watching TV (you may have noticed)—and web-based news means that you can cherry-pick the stories you want to read. So why offer up a TV-based format on a more modern medium? It's a bit of a non-sequitur, really.

In the same announcement, CNN said that it would be making investments in on-demand video instead, although live streams of press conferences and the like would still be on offer. So, dear FC readers, I refer you back to my earlier question: what will you miss the most—the 29-year career of the man from whose lips came this choice quote: "Leprosy—in this country—incredible;" or the online newscasts? The floor is open.

[Ed. note: About 10 years ago in a tizzy, I emailed Lou Dobbs after one of his commentaries, calling him out for what I recognized then as his burgeoning career in xenophobia. He wrote back about 5 minutes later, saying simply, "Hey, Tyler. Thanks for watching. Try to lighten up. Lou." I do feel lighter now. About 250 pounds lighter.—TG]

[MediaBistro via The New York Times]