CNN Student News will remain commercial-free, according to AOL Time Warner executives who considered selling paid sponsorships for the program.
Consumer activist Ralph Nader, a nonprofit group and others opposed to commercialization in schools launched a letter campaign earlier this month -- asking advertising agencies not to do business with "CNN Student News." The educational news program was started in 1989 by Ted Turner.
"We understand that this is a hot-button issue, and to put Turner Learning at the center of the controversy would be a disservice to its mission," said Brad Turell, a spokesman for AOL's Atlanta-based Turner Broadcasting System.
The news program, originally called "CNN Newsroom," was created for students in public schools. It was free of advertising and not intended to make a profit.
The company considered including paid sponsorship in the program, which would have included only the sponsor's name and possibly mention their educational product or initiative. Company officials had said the money would have defrayed some costs to improve the half-hour show.
The program is used in 18,000 U.S. schools. "CNN Student News" is broadcast at 4:30 a.m. weekly for teachers to tape and use later for classroom instruction. It is aimed at middle and high school students.
unknown, The Associated Press. March 25, 2002
Copyright © 2002 Associated Press. All rights reserved.