Extraordinary interest in Diana's death in 1997, saw the network's news flagships attracted a combined ratings of 24.2% (of the 98 million households with TV sets at the time) and a total share of 52% (share of TV sets in use at 6.30pm). In main streets America in 1996, Diana was the star who wouldn't fade. In June 1996, Diana made her first-ever official visit to Chicago on behalf of the Northwestern University to raise money for cancer research. The charity event was a sell-out before invitations were in the mail. 

Some 500 reporters from all over the world followed Diana. At the charity ball held at the Field Museum of Natural History, 1300 A-list people paid from $500 to $2500 a head, or as much as $50,000 a table to "steal glances" of Diana, wearing a Gianni Versace's long purple wool crepe dress and matching purple high heels, dined on salmon and lamb chops, California wine and French champagne. 

Diana raised $1.4 million (or at least $1 million after expenses) for 3 cancer charities: the London's Royal Marsden Hospital, Gilda's Club and Northwestern's Robert Lurie Cancer Center. Some of the public reportedly brought along binoculars to get a close-up view of Diana. Tony Bennett recalled, "I've never seen a reception like this one." During her 3-day visit of Chicago, Diana created a stir among some 3000 students at Northwestern University. 

Governor Jim Edgar told the press Diana was "the only person I know who can push Michael Jordan from the front page." An observer added, "We've never seeing anything like this. Her power is phenomenal. There are so many people who will pay top dollars to sit in the same room that she is in. It's incredible power and for fundraising purposes it’s truly a gift because she is going to be able to raise so much money - in this case for 3 very needy cancer charities. We’ve seen more money come in faster than any other instance."

The 6:30pm news "have gone through agonizing changes in the last few years. They’re really old-fashioned technology in a high-tech world," John Chancellor made the point in December 1995. He argued by the time the newscasts went on air "the audience knows the architecture of that day's news. In the past, the nightly newscast was supposed to bring you news of the world you couldn’t get on your local station. 

"I think news is so complicated, it demands more explanation than you can give it in straight news coverage. The problem is that networks don’t want to give up one to two minutes of a 22-minute news hole to commentary. TV is going through so many changes in ownership and technology, nobody knows how it will come out. Print is the best graduate school you can have for a young journalist. It’s a great way to learn how to write. From there you can move to another medium. TV can’t teach you how to write." 

Andrew Tyndall acknowledged, "Granted, it (CBS News) is more old-fashioned (in 1993). It doesn’t look cutting edge, but sometimes being old-fashioned is OK. I’m not sure that the endorsement Dan (Rather) is looking for, but it’s the one I’ll give." On reflection, Dan Rather remarked, "China is a great story (in 1997). Russia is teetering on a knife's edge, trying to develop democratic institutions, but almost threatening to cave in. The economy is vibrant in this country (the U.S.), but we have children living in poverty. I’m yearning to go to China (for the Hong Kong handover). I’m yearning to find a good story. Maybe I’ll find one in Orlando." 

Brandon Tartikoff told the 'Arizona Republic' back in August 1988, "We are not going to have a giant relaxation in terms of language or in terms of really dealing with certain subject matters that should be best left off network television. But I do think we can shift it 5 degrees to the left and not offend the intended audience for those shows (where standards are loosened). 

"'Saturday Night Live' came onto the airwaves in 1975 as a show that was on the cutting edge. It was daring and it was risqué. People used to look at it and say, ‘I can’t believe they got away with that.’ Now there’s HBO and Showtime, and there’s R-rated movies playing at 8:00 (pm) on the same appliance in people’s households, so the impact of the humor isn’t there. They really have to go to great lengths to try to equal what they did in the past." 

Andrew Lack developed 'West 57th' for television in 1985 explained, "The 10:00pm slot ultimately is not the be-all, end-all. It’s a nice way to start. We know from our past experience at 10:00 that there’s an adult audience out there we didn’t seem to quite have at 8:00 … I'd rather have a lousy time slot and a commitment for 26 weeks than have a good slot and be pulled after 4 weeks." The 60 stories available, Andrew elaborated, "allows you to be a cutting-edge newscast. If a story breaks open, you can send somebody to chase it for 2 or 3 weeks. Of course, with that kind of backlog, you lose a couple of stories. Some go sour. You choose carefully." 

Dan Rather: "Good Evening. The Republican revolution of Election '94 shook Capitol Hill like an earthquake today (November 9, 1994). Its reverberation went into State Houses and move the whole political landscape sharply to the right. Now come the hard part. The new Washington power brokers must stand and deliver. In public, President (Bill) Clinton and Republican leaders pledge to cooperate. Privately they know the score."

"To feed the growing appetite for news and information-based programming" with the cutting edge of television journalism, the professor of journalism at Marquette University, Philip Seib, told the press, "The generation that’s now (in 2001) 14, 15 and 16 years old are increasingly used to getting information from the web. Any news organization that thinks it can survive in the future will at least have to supplement (its on-air product) with a good web product. And the more people use the web, the more demanding they become."

Pioneer David Brinkley told Associated Press in 1993, "But I didn’t create anything. I just got here early (in 1957). I’m not being modest. It just happens to be the truth. Network TV news is immeasurably better than even 10 or 15 years ago but the business remains rather simple. People go and find out what is happening, and then tell what they have seen. That’s all a reporter ever did. I think it’s a very honorable thing to do."

Philip Seib made the point, "We’re long past the days of ABC, NBC and CBS, and that’s it." He pointed toward collaboration for "the simple reason is economics. There's not enough advertising revenue to go around. We’re long past the days of just CNN (on cable) because of Fox and MSNBC." 

Internet user Karen Connelly of Irvine spoke to the 'Los Angeles Times', "I’ve never thought I need a TV. I can’t believe how wrong I was. I’m going out and buying one today." The reason, it was made known, was "purely technical – too many people wanted to know but a medium (at the start of the 21st century) not ready to compete with the reach and immediacy of television and radio. 

"(In 2001) traffic at some (news) sites increased as much as 40 times over daily average, straining the powerful computers that route data. But the internet also revealed its resiliency. As news sites struggled to keep services running, webmasters around the world offered to host material in an effort to prevent online bottlenecks. The internet established itself as a source of breaking news."

In the year of the Y2K, Peter Johnson of 'Gannett News Service' expressed, "When viewers have cable as an alternative to network news, and when young viewers recognize websites more than they do Dan Rather, Peter Jennings or Tom Brokaw, what the network news to do? In this new media world, newsmagazines will continue to play a key role by giving viewers 'a standing presence to be able to cover breaking news.'"

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