by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
bylines, conflicts, journalism, reporting

cbs, cea, cnet, dish

CNET Reports On Losing CES 'Best In Show' Powers, But Hides Byline

from the wtf-is-going-on? dept

So we just wrote about how CEA had taken away CNET's ability to name the "best of show" product at CES (then re-named the Dish Hopper with Sling as the Best in Show as CNET staff had originally intended). Somewhat surprisingly, given the publications' reluctance to say too much about all of this so far, CNET, itself, reported the story, talking about itself in an almost creepily bland manner, and never even noting the oddity that it is reporting on itself. However, one tidbit stands out:
See that byline? It just says "CNET News staff" rather than naming whoever wrote it. I cannot recall ever seeing that before on CNET. At the very least, it raises some questions. Is this a form of a "byline strike" that some journalists have used to protest management practices at other publications? Is it CNET cowardice in reporting on stories that reflect poorly on CNET? Is it a random cry for help among CNET reporters, blinking furiously as a signal to the outside world, while trapped inside their CBS-imposed-editorially-compromised prisons, letting us know they're alive and want out? I'm betting on that last one.

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  • icon
    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), 1 Feb 2013 @ 2:50pm

    None of the above

    It's the editors trying to hide the fact that they're writing copy themselves.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jeffrey Nonken (profile), 1 Feb 2013 @ 3:04pm

    No, you've got it all wrong. "CNET News Staff" is the person's actual real legal name.

    I expect that Mr. Staff got a lot of teasing in grade school. Who's laughing now?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    alanbleiweiss (profile), 1 Feb 2013 @ 4:18pm

    Clicking on the byline "name" just reloads the same article - all other byline names link to the author page for that individual. So I did a Google exact match search on "CNet News Staff" and it brings up several articles with the same byline going back to at least 2011. Each of the articles I checked also had that byline link to the article it was used on.

    Maybe it's hiding, maybe its a protest, however as much as the whole fiasco makes me want to vomit, my guess for this is it's usually articles written by interns, or more likely, a senior staff member who is not a regular author. Which of course, in context, makes it even more head-scratchingly annoying to see...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    CNET News staff, 1 Feb 2013 @ 5:31pm


    I told them not to use my name on that article. Now I'm gonna get fired, and even changed my legal name to show my dedication to CNET to get the job, and let me tell yo, changing your legal name is a *pain*. So much paperwork.

    Took me *years *to get my wife to stop calling me "Steve".

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    F!, 2 Feb 2013 @ 4:08am

    for enquiring minds

    CNET fell to the bottom of the heap along with Daily Mail etc. Fuck'em I couldn't care less how they try to 'apologize' for their parent company. Part ways or suck it up and come to terms with being the bitch! Fucking hacks.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Chris Maresca, 3 Feb 2013 @ 2:18am

    I dropped CNET from my daily read

    Suggest you all do the same. A massive drop in readership is the best outcome of this fiasco.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Tex Arcana (profile), 3 Feb 2013 @ 9:43am

    CNET: now the bastion of journalistic iniquity, and malware distribution...

    Yes, I said "virus/spam distribution". I sent the esteemed editors of this fine publication a link ( to a story about how CNET is allowing malware to pervade their downloads now. it's all in the form of "advertising", but it's duplicitous at best, and it shows a particular callous disregard of the trust of the people who use CNET and read their articles looking for truth (like me).

    You know: they act like CBS runs them, or something. bunch of entertainment industry "execs" who couldn't lead their way out of a poo-filled paper bag without the MAFIAA and a lawsuit.

    I think it's time to drop said bag on CNETs front stoop and set fire to it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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