At The Cable Show, Journalists and Opinion Hosts Coalesce

By Alex Weprin 

Photo Courtesy: The Cable Show

Today is the final day of The Cable Show, an industry gathering for cable TV networks, cable providers and other businesses in that arena. This year the event is being held up in Boston, and plenty of TV news personalities have made the train ride north. Bill O’Reilly and Megyn Kelly made appearances at the News Corp. booth, while MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, CNN’s John King and Univision’s Maria Elena Salinas appeared on a panel to talk opinion versus news on cable. B&C’s Andrea Morabito has a great rundown of what happened:

Hardball host Chris Matthews argued that because of the rise of opinion-based news networks, the non-critical aspect of the media is gone, going as far to say that the reporting that verified the U.S. administration’s claims about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq in 2002 would not happen today because of cable news.

“I would like to think there would be a reckoning we didn’t have then because of modern media,” Matthews said. “Twenty-four/seven is good because it’s not only breadth, it’s depth. Without cable, it is just network [television] thinking, embedded thinking, which is dangerous in a democracy.”

According to an attendee, King pulled no punches when it came to CNN’s ratings situation, acknowledging that it was having issues. Fellow CNNer Piers Morgan moderated a discussion with his Time Warner colleague Conan O’Brien to a packed house this morning, and began with a quip about how he hadn’t had that many people watching him in a long time.