Tom Madden, Founder & CEO, TransMedia Group
Ted Turner, the colorful founder of CNN, and myself, the colorful PR guy and author, will soon be in the digital dark.
Ted and I were among the earliest subscribers to CNN+, but suddenly now the digital doors to the new streaming service are being shut in our faces.
How dare they. Now we want an apology. And our money back!
Well, probably Ted doesn’t, as he’s pretty well off, but I do as I can use that $12 to buy a pizza or some delicious ice cream at Larry’s Ice Cream in Boca Raton that won’t melt as fast as did CNN’s streaming.
I did like the service right from get-go as I enjoyed so much an interview on CNN+ featuring one of my heroes, Chris Wallace. He was interviewing Disney CEO Bob Iger that streamed right into my memory as Bob once worked where I used to work, NBC.
I only wish the interview could have covered Gov. DeSantis’ rushed proposal to cancel Mickey and Cinderella’s independent territorial home and revoke their special tax statis in return for their worker bees opposing his “Don’t Say Gay” bill or royal edict.
Yet that hadn’t happened yet to the magic kingdom, which might now be about to become another very unmagical Florida county, hopefully not completely castle-less.
Warner Bros. Discovery is shutting down the streaming service after it debuted just three weeks ago and was meant to bring CNN into the digital future.
It was reported CNN+ will cease operations on April 30.
“While today’s decision is incredibly difficult, it is the right one for the long-term success of CNN,” Chris Licht, the incoming president of CNN, wrote in a memo.
“It allows us to refocus resources on the core products that drive our singular focus: further enhancing CNN’s journalism and its reputation as a global news leader.”
The shutdown is an ignominious finale to an operation into which CNN sunk millions of dollars, from an aggressive nationwide marketing campaign to hiring hundreds of new employees to recruiting big, high-priced media stars, including my hero, the former “Fox News Sunday” anchor Chris Wallace.
Bye Chris. Hopefully you’ll pop up again somewhere as TV journalism needs you!
About the Author: Besides a Disney fan and blogger addict, Tom Madden is an author of countless published articles and five books, including his latest, WORDSHINE MAN, available now on Amazon. He is the founder and CEO of TransMedia Group, an award-winning public relations firm serving clients worldwide since 1981.