Defenders of the nightly network news will tell you that millions of people still tune in at 6:30PM to hear the news of the day.And it’s true, they do.
(Not to mention I recall a similar argument being made about newspapers right up until about 2007.)
But very few of those people are under the age of 50, and that is a problem.
The network news is a dying animal, made almost entirely irrelevant by the Internet, and mostly watched by people your parent’s age. Katie Couric is smart to get out while the getting is good.
But her departure does present an opportunity for CBS to shake things up. And we mean actually shake. The current favourite to replace Couric is Scott Pelley, which is all well and good — Pelley is a great journalist, but let’s just say, he is not shaking anything.
So here are six people CBS could consider replacing Couric with that might actually have a shot at really shaking things up and as a result entice some new viewers to tune in.
He's probably the most likely of the candidate listed here: Cooper already does segments on 60 Minutes, and has proven of late that he's good at reporting hard news in a way that's engaging (ratings wise).
That said, not sure Cooper would be happy behind a desk. Then again, network news on the road might not be such a bad idea.
We once suggested Hasselbeck would make a great replacement for Kathleen Parker on Parker Spitzer, and she'd be an interesting one here.
She's smart, she's young, and she has a devoted television following. All good and necessary things where CBS is concerned.
Logan has remained off the radar since her appalling attack in Egypt in January, and who's to say when or if she'd want to return to the newsroom.
But should she, she'd be a compelling candidate and bring the foreign reporting bona fides that, judging by the current news cycle, will be ever more in demand.
ABC News gave Tapper the This Week anchor chair temporarily last year to great success. Tapper brought his Twitter acumen to bear on the staid Sunday show and voila, before long there were a lot of people on Twitter talking about Tapper's show.
That may not (yet) equal ratings gold, but it's definitely the direction the network news needs to go in.
Shep Smith may be the most enjoyable news anchor on TV, and that's not just because he's the only sane person at Fox.
He's just really good at what he does -- less voice of God, than the person you most want to talk over the news of the day with, over a drink, at a bar.
Just because. Of course he'd actually have to report the real news, but then again many people think he's already doing that.
And you know you'd turn in...or at least watch later or at the office when you had time, which is how many people consume the Daily Show already (and is more than anyone can say about CBS).
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