Lately, CNN.com’s homepage has been reminiscent of a teenager’s Twitter feed after a bad breakup: me, me, me. CNN.com is American news for American people.
CNN.com has been my go-to source for news ever since I moved to the United States. I don’t have to concentrate to read through verbose, lengthy paragraphs and the website is designed for easy access.
Web Analytics Company Alexa reports that CNN.com is the 16th most popular website in the United States, while cnnpressroom.com reported 2.4 billion total page views across all platforms in 2013. CNN also has 11.8 million Twitter followers. Let that sink in.
CNN.com is massively important in determining the way the average American will view current events. The website may even be the only place John Doe goes for online news and the average user spends only five minutes and six seconds on the website. His eyes scan the homepage, he clicks on two or three links that pique his interest, then he moves on.
Obviously, the ultimate decision of what to read belongs to the reader. CNN.com has no control over where the cursor will end up. However, in restricting the pool of international information available on the first and therefore most popular page, CNN.com places its user at a disadvantage.
Did you know Belgium just legalized euthanasia for terminally ill children – with no age limit? This is huge, world-altering news. CNN covered the story, but you’ll have to look for it. It was nowhere featured on the homepage. A few key words in the search bar were all it took to find it, but how would you know to look if CNN is the only place you go for news?
This topic would take me thousands of words to cover fully. Let me just end with this: I love American news. I love the fact that we live in a nation where there is always something newsworthy happening and always freedom to write about it. But let’s face it. We are not the center of the universe.
So, give it to me straight. Is this just the French independent thinker in me speaking, or is CNN.com a US-fest? Should CNN.com’s homepage provide more international news? Is American news all the American people need?