Nov 23 2005

CNN Lies And Covers Up?

Published by at 8:12 pm under All General Discussions

When I heard of the large ‘X placed over Cheney’s face on CNN I had pretty much guessed it was liberals losing all sense of self control (they have so little to start with!).

When I read the ‘X‘ was a computer bug I was knew they were lying through their teeth to cover up some juvenile delinquent’s stupid act. This is obvious since this kind of ‘computer’ glitch should have left a record or be reproducible:

It involved a switcher, something we call a switcher. It’s a machine that we use to switch between visual elements.

A majority of graphics we use on the air, we use as a big x to identify at what point should the tape be cued up.

This means the graphic is an overlay on the control room’s screens – a post process queue that would never be on the air. Simply put, the signal is generated at one place and received at many other places – TV’s across the nation, and probably the CNN control room.

In order to make sure the queue graphics never get transmitted to the outside it makes sense to overlay these on a signal on the receiving end in the control room – basically after the signal has been transmitted and received. A switch can either add a signal pre-transmission, in which case it goes out to the world, or it does it after reception in the control room, which means it cannot go anywhere outside the control room. It is probable CNN can add things to the signal going out and add them to monitors simply receiving.

This would be a hard wired configuration so all the communications in the control room do not go out on the air. Moreover, switches and feeds must be monitored and logged someplace. So they should have a log showing the ‘X‘ overlaying the transmission data. And once they have that they should be able to recreate easily. Many SW bugs can be recreated once you re-establish the conditions.

OK, this is all guess work. But being around technology it is better to avoid mistakes in this manner. So I never bought the ‘it’s a bug’ problem. Now we get this from Daily Pundit – which is much more believable:

When the founders of the company, Preska Thomas and Kevin Finn, made contact with the network, to their surprise they were bullied and harassed in the same way by the Headline News desk. Callers were repeatedly told by CNN, “Tell the President and Vice-President Dick Cheney to stop lying.” Team Hollywood’s conversation with the newsdesk was recorded. When the tape is played back, amongst political statements being made by the network were the words that the “X” was intentional, as an act of free speech by CNN.

Now what is more plausible? Some magical computer glitch that probably violates a few laws of physics and electrical engineering, or rampaging liberals losing control at CNN?

Now there are lots of doubts about the unconfirmed authenticity of the tapes. But I still bet the answer is someone played a childish prank and CNN is too immature to just admit it was a childish prank. Personally, there are many more important and real issues to deal with than CNN’s maturity level (technical or emotional).


Wizbang has more on the mystery ‘Xhere. As I thought, it was not accidental and the employee has been fired. Too funny!

4 responses so far

4 Responses to “CNN Lies And Covers Up?”

  1. Snapple says:

    I think they probably did it on purpose, too. I can’t evaluate the technical arguments, but it is a bit of the coincidence that this happened right when the VP was giving a speech instead of at another time.

    I hope that the tape of the phone calls to CNN do become available and that they can be authenticated.

  2. sbd says:

    I’m not a video expert, but when I read of this so-called “switcher” , my first impression was that it was an obscure term to describe a transition between frames of video. There are numerous transitional patterns that are used between frames which offer a variety of visual effects, but I have never seen anyone use an X in this manner. The symbol of the X has a definate meaning when used which more often than not portrays a negative intent. I can not see any reason to use an X in a transition, if that is what “switcher” is supposed to mean.


  3. LuckyBogey says:

    UPDATE: 6:18 PM, PT 11/23/05: Call Authentic, CNN Fires Rep:

    I just got off the phone with Laurie Goldberg, Senior Vice President for Public Relations with CNN. Her statement confirms the authenticity of the tape recording and reveals the actions CNN took after learning of the incident:

    “A Turner switchboard operator was fired today after we were alerted to a conversation the operator had with a caller in which the operator lost his temper and expressed his personal views — behavior that was totally inappropriate. His comments did not reflect the views of CNN. We are reaching out to the caller and expressing our deep regret to her and apologizing that she did not get the courtesy entitled to her. ”

  4. BIGDOG says:

    Yepp X marked the spot. Showed a certian biased withing CNN.