Tough on tickers - Broadcasting & Cable

Tough on tickers

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Disaffection with Cable News Network's news ticker (or "creepy crawler," as some CNN viewers
have coined it) appears to be infectious. Lou Dobbs and Aaron Brown have made no
secret of their disdain for the ubiquitous crawl.

On Lou Dobbs Moneyline, Dobbs often reads -- with gusto -- viewer electronic mails on the
crawl, most of them protests. When one viewer wrote that the crawl is
"distracting, infuriating, arrogant, self-important -- the yellow journalism of
the 21st century," Dobbs cheered, "Go Gerald!"

Dobbs said his favorite e-mails are from viewers who've blocked out the ticker
with duct tape.

Speaking at a recent media gathering, Brown responded to CNN research showing
that 67 percent of viewers prefer the crawl: "Prefer it to what?" he deadpanned,
"Freeze-dried coffee?"

CNN takes the barbs in stride, and it has no intention of taking away the ticker.
"We encourage airing views on all sides. However, we believe the vast majority of
viewers value the crawl and the information it provides," the network said.

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