Ask your doctor if CBS News is right for you.

Not only did the “CBS Evening News” go to just one sponsor for this past Sunday’s edition, this fact was announced by the anchorman during the opening moments, as if it were a lead story: “Good evening…one sponsor…fewer commercial interruptions…”

I wondered which car manufacturer was stepping up to the plate to underwrite this heavily viewed prime time broadcast. Ironically I was, like millions of others no doubt, now anticipating rather than dreading the first commerical. The one sponsor turned out not to be about gas mileage or horsepower. The sponsor was Caduet, “one pill that may help manage both high blood pressure and high cholesterol…”

I already had thought I was witnessing a disturbing media paradigm shift when, half-a-dozen years ago, morning radio news broadcasts began reporting on what happened on the previous evening’s “Survivor” and other popular television shows. As if “Friends” and enemies in the Middle East were equal in importance. Now television is reporting on its own self and its advertising coups. As if TV is more important than real life.

Maybe I imaged it. Or maybe the anchorman actually did pause at that point where, for decades, the first commercial came in at five or six minutes into the broadcast. He then suddenly remembered he had to fill a few more minutes with content before he got a break, and continued with the news.


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One Comment on “Ask your doctor if CBS News is right for you.”

  1. Frank Paolo Says:

    I didn’t even hear about one sponsor. You can always tell the demographics
    of a television show by its advertisers. When the advertisers are hawking high
    blood pressure and high cholesterol remedies. you know the audience isn’t
    filled with Generation-X-ers – the group with the most discretionary income.

    Anyway, the bigger story (in my opinion) is dumping Katie Couric. Unfortunately
    Katie wasn’t known for her serious news side. Most of the time, she was a bubbly,
    giggling percolator on the TODAY show (where, supposedly, no one could stand her
    off camera). Moving her to a position once held by Walter Cronkite was lunacy.

    The best thing Katie ever did was take us on a video tour of her colon to raise
    awareness of early detection of colon cancer (the disease of which her husband
    died). I still get excited thinking about it – but maybe that’s just me.

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