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CNN and ABC are among the largest US broadcasting companies, thanks to which people can find out the up-to-date news from all over the world. Being informed is very vital in the information era.
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On November 13, 2012, the CNN highlighted its three top news under the following headlines: ,,Two US top generals David Petraeus and John Allen were involved in a scandal”; ,,Obama’s first steps as a newly elected President of the USA”, and ,,Arafat’s body was being exhumed”. The main attention was paid to generals’ adultery cases and the obstacles of Arafat’s death whether he was poisoned or not. It took approximately 8 and 7 minutes of air time, correspondingly. We could watch the US President Barack Obama’s episode for 3.30 minutes (CNN November 13 2012). The ABC focused mainly on Texas Secession, the Petraeus case, and the 4-year old child who was found in a dog cage by police. The Petraeus affair took approximately 6.50 minutes of air time, Texas and some other states’ separatist intentions – 5.30 minutes, and the cruel dad’s attitude to his daughter – 3 minutes (ABC November 13 2012). As we have seen, the top event which attracted attention of the two news agencies was Petraeus’ and Allen’s inappropriate behavior. Two other top news were different in CNN and ABC newscasts.
While monitoring the news reports by CNN and ABC agencies, we could notice some features of their presentations. It seemed that ABC supported the governmental view of evens. Talking about Texas secession, ABC claimed that White House could use different tools such as federal departments, law enforcement agencies, and courts in order to prevent it (ABC November 13 2012). Assuming this, we could suggest that such an activity is unacceptable because it undermines the state integrity. ABC also claimed that the separatist states are opposed not to the concept of the Union, but to the wrong policy of the Obama administration, first of all tax issues. With regard to generals’ adultery cases, the CNN and ABC hold a similar view. Former CIA director David Petraeus had extramarital relations with his biographer Paula Broadwell. The general soon admitted his ties with Broadwell and resigned from the CIA. The Head of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan general John Allen was accused of similar misdeed. He sent nearly 30,000 messages to Jill Kelley. Allen is under FBI investigation now (CNN, ABC November 13 2012). The CNN correspondents believed that both generals were guilty and that such cases were hardly new for American officials. They referred to former presidents J. Kennedy, L. Johnson, and W. Clinton, who had also indulged in adultery (CNN November 13 2012). However, in ABC’s view, it was necessary to take into account the previous achievements of two generals and their service to the nation (ABC November 13 2012). In addition to this, ABC correspondents made an assumption that Paula Broadwell was a spy.
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As we know, Obama won the recent presidential elections. The CNN told about his first steps: Obama met wwith labor leaders, discussed tax issues, and appointed the UN Ambassador Susan Rice as a new Secretary of State (CNN November 13 2012). ABC considered as top news the child locked in a dog cage. The police arrested the child’s father, who was a drug addict and alcoholic (ABC November 13 2012). Regarding these two events, we could notice that CNN paid more attention to politics rather than social issues. However, the CNN omitted the problem of the state secession. It was not mentioned in any news reports during November 13, 2012, that Texas and some other states sent a petition to President Obama requiring independence. The CNN reporters did not define this information as important and did not choose to show to the world countries some serious problems in the US.
According to CNN, Arafat’s body was to be exhumed. It was assumed that Palestinian leader could be poisoned in 2004 (CNN November 13 2012). We can see that CNN has covered international situation in their news, but ABC focused mainly on events related to the US internal affairs and their importance.
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In conclusion, we must admit two American news agencies, ABC and CNN, are somewhat different in their news reports. ABC shows events neutrally, tending to the governmental view to some extent. CNN is more of a public channel, providing information targeted at American society. The best way to become aware of all events happening inside the country and abroad is watching newscasts of different news agencies and comparing them. In such a way, we could be sure of the news credibility.
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