Television News

1938 - The first regular broadcast of daily news began on radio, with the World Today program on CBS for 15 minutes every evening, developed by Edward R. Murrow

1941 - The FCC Mayflower Doctrine ruled that a broadcaster could not become an advocate

1948 - Douglas Edwards began the"CBS TV News" produced by Don Hewitt

1949 - KTLA broadcast the Kathy Fiscus rescue attempt for 27 hours

1950 - The Kefauver Committee hearings on organized crime in America were broadcast for 15 months, from May 1950 to July 1951

1951 - Nov. 18 was first TV broadcast of See It Now, produced by Fred Friendly and directed by Don Hewitt in magazine format, broadcast coast-to-coast using newly-completed coaxial cable

1952 - Jan. 14 Pat Weaver at NBC began the Today morning magazine show; CBS TV news division director Sig Mickelson selected Walter Cronkite as the anchorman to replace Douglas Edwards; Sept. 23 Nixon delivered his Checkers speech 9:30-10 pm after Milton Berle

1953 - Murrow's Person to Person was on TV until 1959, with Murrow making weekly visits to the homes of famous people

1953 - Oct. 20 Murrow produced the See It Now program on Milo Radulovich

1954 - Mar. 9 Murrow produced the See It Now program on Joseph McCarthy; Apr. 22 began the Army-McCarthy hearings, televised live for 36 days to an audience of 20 million; kinescopes of these hearing were used by Emile de Antonio to produce the 1964 documentary Point of Order

1956 - CBS began the use of videotape for the Douglas Edwards news show

1960 - Television developed a split personality with the rapid growth of both news and entertainment, of documentaries such as Murrow's "Harvest of Shame" for CBS Reports

1962 - July 9 AT&T launched Telstar into orbit, the first communications satellite

1963 - Sept. 2 CBS Evening News expanded from 15 to 30 minutes, followed by NBC Sept. 9, and ABC in 1967; the November funeral of assassinated President Kennedy drew the highest ratings in TV history with 93% of TV homes watching

1964 - August Gulf of Tonkin incident and resolution caused increased news coverage of the Vietnam War on television

1965 - April 6 launch of Early Bird, the world's first commercial communications satellite that was built for the Communications Satellite Corporation (COMSAT) by Hughes and was placed in commercial service on June 28

1967 - Charles Kuralt began his "On the Road" series for the CBS Evening News

1968 - CBS began the 60 Minutes news magazine/documentary weekly show created and produced by former Life magazine reporter Don Hewitt

1969 - July 20 Apollo 11 transmitted live TV pictures from the surface of the moon, with the help of the Dish in Australia, and the lunar camera developed by

1973 - July began the televised Watergate hearings

1979 - The ABC program Good Morning America, started in 1975, unseated NBC's Today Show as the top-rated morning show

1980 - Ted Turner created the Cable News Network (CNN) and broadcast news 24 hours/7 days a week

1981 - March 6 Walter Cronkite's last evening news broadcast on CBS; Dan Rather replaced the retired Cronkite on the number 1 CBS Evening News for a salary of $1.6 million per year

1991 - Jan. 16 Desert Storm bombing of Baghdad relayed live by CNN (dramatized in the HBO film Live from Baghdad in 2002); ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings ranked 1st during the Gulf War with 14% share of the audience over 12% for NBC and 11% for CBS. Jennings stayed in the New York studio while Rather and Brokaw flew to the gulf; Oct. 11 began Clarence Thomas hearings


1999-2002 by Steven E. Schoenherr. All rights reserved.

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