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Mark Thompson’s Message & MTP Overheating

Mark Thompson
Mark Thompson at a CNN Election Party in London Photo by Ian West via Getty Images
Dylan Byers
September 20, 2023

In recent weeks, as incoming CNN chief Mark Thompson has gone about introducing himself to the organization’s top executives, producers and on-air talent in one-on-one meetings and phone calls, he has expressed a few near-term priorities for the beleaguered news network. 

In some exchanges, sources familiar with the conversations said, Thompson has encouraged his new charges to abandon the anxieties about editorial bias that weighed on them in the early, Malone-ordained view-from-both-sides era. He has said, for instance, that the Hunter Biden indictment should not be covered out of some obligation to balance the partisan scales, but simply because it’s a good, newsworthy story. In others, he has expressed a desire to better distinguish the staid primetime hours by taking a “bolder” approach to covering stories. More broadly, he has described himself as “a firewall” between the journalists and the demands of the parentco and its shareholders. At surface level, it calls back to Zucker.