Thursday, June 26, 2008


I cannot blog about Thursday's AC360, just can't do it. I've reached the end of my rope with the dismal direction that my former favorite program has taken. Maybe there is a reason AC360 had an exclusive on the 'private' Obama Clinton meeting, and those fabulously blurry cell phone pictures? Could it be because no other network gave a shit? It's a good thing it's Thursday and I have the weekend to get over it or I seriously think I would hand in my blogging resignation.

I should point out that if you stuck with the entire hour you....

A....are a glutton for punishment
B....were treated to a 19 second report on one of the most controversial Supreme Court decision in years. This could and should have been a major story with discussion by Toobin, an expert on the highest Court.
C....watched an exclusive (but brief) interview with Christina Anmanpour about Korea. (Guess it CNN puts out all that money to send a team to Korea to watch an implosion they need to pimp it. )
D....did not hear the word Zimbabwe once.
E....are a fool! I am in this category, but my excuse is it's my job.

I guess after that horrendous excuse for a program we all could use a smile so here's my meager attempt.

First a mural painted on a men's room wall.

A football team that needs to trade a player or two.

And this last one is just wrong, wrong, wrong. But I bet it made you smile?

I will be going to communion Sunday to ask God to forgive me for posting that last picture. I might as well also pray for better program content and a new executive producer for AC360, while I'm at it. Thank God It's Friday! ~ Phebe

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All Things Anderson is a blog dedicated to CNN's AC360 and its host Anderson Cooper.


Anonymous said...

Phebe, I must say, you do have a way with words. As a once avid 360 fan I couldn't keep my eyes open wide enough to enjoy how handsome AC looked. It was soooo boring listening to that nonsense about what Obama and Clinton were supposedly saying behind close doors that I switched to HGTV and watched House Hunters. I didn't care what the banter was between AC and Erica, and that in itself is a bad sign.
Be strong. Please don't give up your insentive to blog.

Anonymous said...

I watched a piece on Zimbabwe on 360 tonight. Anderson did the piece. It was good, but the footage of injuries inflicted on people there was really disturbing. Either it was just in the second hour or you guys fell asleep I guess.

Anne said...

Hi Phebe,

I couldn't get over the blurry pictures and does there have to be a panel for stuff like this? I always thought "breaking news" meant disasters/events not politicians talking. You need to go to PBS for real issues/news. Listening to Bill Moyers on Fridays is more insightful than a thousand of 360 panel group discussions. I don't understand the route 360 is taking but it needs to make a detour fast!

Phebe said...

@anonymous 10:24 you are absolutely right I just checked my recording and there was a piece on Zimbabwe in the last 5 minutes of the second hour. They cut the North Korea story. I barely stayed awake for the first hour, no way I could make it through a second.

Good catch, wonder if anyone else saw it?

@anne, I've turned to Brian Williams since I don't seem to get my news fix on 360.

Anonymous said...

I also saw the piece on was short but it was good. I hope they will discuss it some more tomorrow.

ACAnderFan said...

360 was way out of line last nite with that "breaking news" as they called it. AC 360 may have finally hit rock bottom. I hope it has becuase I can't imagine it being any worse. At least once you have hit rock bottom the only way is up...hopefully. Then again I think Britney Spears proved there is a level below rock bottom. Lets hope 360 dosen't go there. I won't hold my breath though.

Anonymous said...


I couldn’t agree with you more. What the heck is happening to the AC360 Program these days?

I will give Anderson the benefit of the doubt, yes, the American political season over the past 17 months has been groundbreaking and sometimes nail-biting to say the least, at least in our life time, and we in North America or the industrialized world can not afford to take our elections for granted. Even as a Canadian, watching from the sidelines, I couldn’t be more proud of Sen. Obama’s achievements to date, even if I tried.

Look at what’s happening in Zimbabwe, Kenya, Burma, the Middle East, Sudan, Darfur, the NRC and other less then democratic Nations around the world. What they struggle with and fight for everyday are free and democratic elections, where we sometimes take for granted, so Anderson has every right to be engrossed with the various aspect of this political season, but by golly, there are other world events taking place simultaneously, where as a comprehensive a Journalist as Anderson Cooper is, I absolutely do not understand his stance on opting not to cover some of the world highlights of the day. It absolutely boggles my mind why Anderson won’t take a stance and say enough is enough.

Please don’t get me wrong, I admire Anderson as a Journalist as we all do (or most of us at least), but I am constantly amazed at the lack of substance at some of his choice of topics over the last 6 months.

As a young lady myself of Portuguese-Asian background, born, raised and educated and having worked on the African Continent, immigrating to Canada has been one of the highlights of my young life and I will never ever forget my heritage and birth place. Kenya will always be my native-land and will remain apart of me. And watching what took place during the Dec/Jan Elections in Kenya and the same thing happening all over again in Zimbabwe; it absolutely breaks my heart all over again.

To watch constantly what my native-land and her people suffer, be it in Kenya or anywhere else on the African Continent, it just kills me, and the worst part of it is the lack of coverage, exposure and assistance from the west is just unbelievable.

Sometimes even trying to get a word in edge-wise on the AC360 blog has been a challenge. I do not know whom they have as a moderator, but my comments are never posted, even when it pertains to my own Country. I thought about doing a piece on Zimbabwe the other day in response to Anderson’s post and though WHY? It’s won’t get posted. I attempted 3 times last night and once today to send comments, none of which were posted, so why do we even bother?

It just saddens me, really. Saddens me to no end. Maybe tomorrow will be better. One can only hope.

Thanks for hearing me out.

Kristien said...

Oh Phebe, your post made me laugh (except what you said about giving up blogging!), even without the pics, though I'm not sure you were trying to be funny.

I'm only half a fool (no second hour) and I managed to watch in in less than 20 minutes, thanks to my friend, the FF-button. (he did look really good, that also helped...)

The pics are great, though at first I didn't get the second one, I was looking at the wrong part of the picture...
That last one is hilarious!!!!!

Thanks Phebe. Enjoy your weekend!

Anonymous said...

This is what 360 is like without the political coverage. Now that that is waning, they better get crackin'.

Anonymous said...

Well that show last night was about as exciting as watching my grass grow!!

I have started watching my local news,at least I can get some stuff about the REST OF THE WORLD,
and what is happening in it.

Do YOU remember the rest of the world,by any chance 360?
You used to.

It DOES exist,and some of us would like to hear about it!

Are they TRYING to drive people away-well,if so,good job!

Who in heaven's name is the final decision maker on this show,for giving us the likes of THIS?

I have had it,and I MAY be back after November.

Em said...

I watched the second hour only so I saw the piece on Zimbabwe. It was good but it seemed like they ran out of time and cut it a little short.

Before AC 360, I always counted on PBS for a more balanced coverage during the elections. Lately, like Annie, I have been going back to PBS more and more. With the hours spent lurking in the bushes, the he said - she said - Bill said, and now the fuzzy pictures; AC360 seems to have taken on a surreal tabloid-like air. Darn it! I just can't understand why the ratings go up and up. Up to this point I have defended AC because I know he is a political junkie but honestly IMHO 90% of the political coverage in the past 3-4 months has been nonsense. Although I do love a few of the panelists, for the most part I feel I had heard everything they had to say after the second time Anderson had them on. If you watch LKL or other CNN programming you get some of the panelists 4 to 5 hours a day. Just too darn much opinion and not enough policy or fact for my taste! I think the producers need to get AC out of the studio more on breaking stories in the U.S. and give him more in-depth stories about issues that concern us here at home. Anderson is so amazingly good at covering those intensely personal stories that resonate with many of his viewers. I really miss that. And by the way, did Mick and Peter fall off the planet or did the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq end while I was flicking through the channels to avoid one more political panel?

I guess I shouldn't be so surprised with the change of focus at AC360. If I like a program on cable or one of the networks it is usually the kiss of death for that particular program. Before long the program will change beyond recognition or be cancelled. I never seem to be in step with the rest of my 25-54 demographic. Oh well, I will keep tuning in to AC360 hoping for those rare glimpses of Anderson covering stories only the way he can.

J in LA said...

Well, I turned in my digital box to the cable company yesterday because of a move, so I went the DVD route last night during packing. It doesn't sound like I missed much other than the internet spat GRETA is causing about Rev. Sharpton appearing on AC360 instead of her program - a last minute cancel supposedly caused by the urging of the Obama campaign. Who knows, and personally who cares????
J in LA

Anonymous said...

Many greetings,from Athens...Greece!First time bloggin!

Anonymous said...

Campbell's program currently has the same executive producer as 360? Isn't that unusual for one person to be EP for two programs? Maybe not. But if so, maybe there are plans to replace him on one of the programs. He was just recently named to Campbell's program.

ACAnderFan said...

Could 360 be anymore boring last nite. I think 360 has finally hit rock bottom regardign political coverage. Last nite was the worst 360 ever.

Anonymous said...

Phebe, Amen. I totally agree with your comments. Each night I would look forward to 360--couldn't get enough of the show or Anderson. Now I'm gone within 15 minutes. I miss the old days--maybe I miss the old producers but something has taken a seriously downward turn!

Anonymous said...

I don't know if anyone knows this yet or not so I'll tell this now: Anderson is sick again. I do not know if he will be on friday night, but he's been coughing alot lately. I thought the other day he was just clearing his throat but then he did it again and it was really loud. It worries me because the last thing he does is take care of himself. I hate it when he's sick/upset or not himself. He is such a great guy and he, most of the time, forgets about himself to please others.

Phebe said...

@anonymous 12:15, Your experiences with the 360 blog are not that unusual. It seems to have become a clique, sort of like high school. Send us your comments, we'll be glad to listen and discuss.

@anonymous 3:21, You are preaching to the choir.

@anonymous 5:20, Final decision maker? Dave Doss, the executive producer.

@em, Oh the good ole days. Wouldn't it be nice if we could just turn back the clock and see one of the old, red AC360's? Only a few more weeks until Aaron Brown's new program debuts. That is at least something to look forward to.

@j in la, good luck with the move!

@anonymous 7:11, Welcome! It's always good to have another international commenter.

@anonymous 8:12, Have you watched Campbell's program? It's like mini AC360. I don't know if it's unusual for an executive producer to handle 2 programs, especially if he can't even get one right.

@anonymous 9:51, I don't know if AC is really sick or not, but maybe if there is a sub tonight we'll get a better program?

@acanderfan, Sorry you had to comment twice. I was posting comments early this morning and had an interruption before I could finish. Bet you were scratching your head wondering why I didn't post yours?

@anonymous 9:26, Downhill is an understatement. It's funny but when fans start to bitch like they are today we usually get a few great programs. For me, this time, a few great programs aren't going to be enough.

m.minkoff said...

I stopped watching AC360 several months ago, as I really disliked their wall to wall political coverage. I thought their pundits were heavily weighted towards Obama, and the bias really bothered me. Now that the nominees have been decided, they've stuck with the same boring formula. It amazes me how anyone could enjoy watching it night after night. Like Anderson *used* to say, the viewers are smart enough to form their own opinions, yet that's what we're being fed night after night - opinions. I don't know why ratings are up. I guess the program is attracting a different audience these days. It must be a mix of the "old-timers" who are smart enough to form their own opinions, and some new folks who prefer being told how to think.

It's become a formulaic program, just fill in the blanks with the latest non-stories of the day. It must be easier to produce that way, but it sure lacks interest.

I do check back in every now and then to see if anything's changed, but it's always at least 30 minutes of political punditry, no matter what else is happening in the world.

I live in a major city and get my news from our daily paper which I still read, since I need it for my parrot's cage. There is an editorial page for opinions, and the rest is hard news. Oh, there are entertainment and sports sections,too, but I don't generally read those. On TV I often watch the BBC news for its excellent international coverage.

Anderson Cooper is a fabulous reporter and writer. As an anchor he is eye candy, but nothing more, in my opinion. If they aren't going to let him do what he does best, then CNN is wasting its money.

aries moon said...

With the exception of the Zimbabwe report in the second hour, Thursday's 360 was a complete waste of time. *If* they had to report on the meeting between Hillary and Obama, why not just give an overview and move on to other news? This program needs ANOTHER overhaul. Usually, even when the show is bad, I stick with it, but last night I REALLY wanted to turn it off.

Cyn said...

Here's what worries me... We're all holding out for November (or planning to check back in then.)


What if we get endless panel discussions on what [the loser] did wrong? "Remember back a few months when X said Y?" "If only X had been smart enough to listen to me and done Z, things might have worked out differently." Etc, etc, ad nauseum.

That ought to carry us through the inauguration, and then: the First 100 Days! And by the end of that, we ought to have a juicy scandal or two to pick apart.

You see where I'm going with this? Will CNN ever actually =News again?

Anonymous said...


We appreciate you listening to all of us gripe, mourn and groan about the quality of the AC360 program of late. It can’t be easy for you to do with you do with this blog and website and to maintain it everyday with sometimes lack of material of substance to cover based on what the AC360 program generates. So once again, we all appreciate your every effort at maintaining this blog and website with humour, candour and grace.

Phebe – my next question to you is – how can we get Michael Ware and Peter Bergen back on the program along with reports from Nic Robertson and some of the other more seasoned Journalists. Nic was in Kenya when they had their issues with their Election. I haven’t seen him is ages even covering stories from the Middle East, he seems to have dropped off the radar.
F.Y.I. – I learnt today that CNN is not allowed in to Zimbabwe along with other western Journalists, just as there were similar issues with access in to Burma. They have a couple of local Journalist coverings the story from South Africa.

@anonymous at 9.15 am – I’m not so sure it’s Anderson that’s sick – It seemed like David Gegen sounded like he was under the weather yesterday and has been over the last several days. He sounded like he catching a cold and he sounded the same the other night, too.

Folks have a great weekend and to all Canadians taking weekend as a long extended weekend – Happy Canada Day on Tuesday.

Anonymous said...

m.minkoff at 11:01 AM: re your comment why doesn't CNN let Anderson Cooper do do what he does best, I agree with you there, but then maybe he doesn't want to be out in the field as much as he used to be(I'm just guessing). and he has said himself how much he is enjoying this election which requires him to be in the studio.

The last time he subbed for Regis, he told Kelly that the cancer gave him an excuse to not do anything. He said it in jest I think, but then he was taking all this vacation all year and not traveling for work all, I began to wonder if he really meant it. Maybe he is burnt out.

Anonymous said...

The report about Obama and Clinton meeting (with the fuzzy cellphone pictures) was making a mountain out of a molehill. Yes, they met, of course they were going to meet up at some point, so they met, whoop de do.

The whole story could have been covered in less than two minutes but for some reason Anderson and the panel and the producers (?) wanted to drag it out as long as possible, as if it was a slow news day and there was nothing else going on.

Very surprised the Supreme Court ruling on guns didn't get more time along with the international news they could have told us about.

I've never posted on the 360 live blog. Maybe it's time to do so, something like "HEY! Less political fluff! More real news!"

Speaking of useless information, Anderson and Keith Olbermann were identically dressed yesterday.


eliza said...

Hi guys. Someone told me there was a bit of a revolt going on over here and wow, they weren't kidding. I'm with Phebe in that I'm about to hang up my blogging hat. In fact, last night I spent over half of my post on Nightline's excellent report on the Congo.

I'm not sure what to think about Anderson and 360 anymore. But I don't think this change in quality can all be laid at David Doss's feet. He's been the EP for quite a while, even when the show was rocking. And he's not the big boss. That would be Jon Klein.

I think we should also remember that while the show has most assuredly moved toward suckiness lately, the quality has actually always waxed and waned. Remember the Paris Hilton show? I think a lot of us have just reached our breaking point. All I can say is that everyone should send negative feedback continuously. It may not make a difference, but at least they'll know they're alienating some of their longtime viewers.

Anonymous said...

Would have loved to have seen the piece on Zimbabwe in the second hour but by then, after seeing fifteen minutes of the first, I was way deep in a "coma." I don't think I could have stayed awake for the second if they paid me. 360's new promotional add should be "Better than Ambion, mild but relaxing sedative, will have you in a trance in no time. And it works. Just ask those who've tried it!"
All joking aside, it is a shame that AC doesn't give his input into making his show better. Granted the producer produces, but how can he, in all honesty read the nonsense on his teleprompter and not know that it is boring!

Anonymous said...

I too, couldn't stand it. I didn't care whether AC proposed to Erica on the live blog or they recited the alphabet together. I wasn't going to stick around to find out.
Even if I wanted to comment on it, which I don't, the laptop would have slid off my lap on to the floor. Maybe that would have been a good thing because the sound of it hitting the hardwood would have awakened me!

ACAnderFan said...

@eliza, the Paris Hilton show was far better than anything 360 has given us this week. At least that had substance and was relevant and was a productive discussion. Besides Paris is an interesting person.

eliza said...

@acanderfan--The Paris Hilton show had substance?! Wha? Sure, some people (certainly not me) might find her interesting, but 360 is a news show. How is that news? We should be able to tell the difference between CNN and the E! Channel.

ACAnderFan said...

@eliza, well at least it was something relevant. She had just got out of jail. She interesting becuase she really dosen't do anything yet she is constantly in the news. Besides I would much rather hear about Paris, Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan than this political junk. If the political junk wasn't mentioned everyday it might not be so bad.

Em said...

@ Anonymous 12:05...Bom Dia! My father is Azorean. He came to the U.S. as an infant and wanted his children to be totally Americanized so the extent of my Portuguese is to tell you Good Day! Just wanted to say Ciao from one 1/2 Portuguese Anderfan to another.

Anonymous said...

@ em – 9.18 p.m. – appreciate it dear, and back at you.

By the way, on a separate note, I’m sorry Portugal won’t be in this year’s 2008 Euro Final on Sunday. F.Y.I. What’s got me sooo nervous for this Sunday’s Final is that both Teams I was supporting during the Qualifying rounds (Germany and Spain) are in the Finals. Can you believe that? What are the chances!! I am so nervous ‘bout watching the game, it’s crazy.

Anyways, just thought I’d share my thoughts on the love of the game of Soccer.

Can you tell, I was a tom-boy growing up....somethings never change.

Have a Super Weekend!

Anonymous said...

Yea I agree with you guys. They ignored some of the real news stories. There were some BIG stories over the past two days and they talked about them for like two seconds and moved on to the "Breaking News" which was complete nonsense.
I agree that we need to send them as much negative feedback as possible. They have said before that they love to hear feedback from us, positive or negative. So it might work if we all write to them and post comments on the 360 blog.

I have noticed the show has taken a huge downfall since the beginning of the year. It doesn't have the same vibe anymore as it did last year. I hardly enjoyed it this year.

When I heard Erica would be moving the NYC, I was so excited because I love the banter between Anderson and Erica. I'm a huge fan of them!But what upset me was how much they have lowered Erica by having her sit in the corner in the "kid's table" (as one person called it). It upsets me to see her leave her own show and to come to CNN just to do the bullitens (which we all love), but we need to see her do some REAL reporting as well. Also their banter was much better and funnier when Erica was in Atlanta!

@ Anon 9:43, I had to change the channel too with all the political fluff and I also didn't care for the banter between Anderson and Erica either. It was the first time that I changed the channel on them. That itself really is a bad sign, that 360 has officially hit rock bottom!