cbs news

I'm a firm believer in the importance of voting.   As a good "Citizen of the Month," I vote in every election.  Maybe if everyone actually voted once in a while, we wouldn't have such crappy government leaders. 

I've voted for the Writers Guild Awards and Sophia's SAG awards.

I voted last night for Elliot Yamin in "American Idol."   Actually, I doubt that he's going to win, but he's Jewish and cries over his mother, so I relate to him. 

It's been Dave's third anniversary all week on his Blogography blog.  I voted for which Blogography t-shirt design I liked the best.

I became very excited when Kevin told me about a Fox contest to let us vote on which of the five box designs for the new "24" DVD we like the best.  As if Jack Bauer had such difficult decisions. 

While I love to vote, there are some times I want decisions made for me.  With the success of reality TV, I hope that audience voting isn't integrating into regular series.

"Watch Lost this week, then vote which character you want to die!"

Sometimes I just want to watch the story.

Luckily, there are some institutions that still take themselves seriously as an authority on their subject, like CBS News, famed home of Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite, and Dan Rather.


The major networks (CBS included) spend millions of dollars every year trying to figure out what people want to see on TV. Yet, in the end, much of the programming isn't what you would have picked at all.

That's why we're now giving you a direct say in the matter. You and the rest of our viewers will be able to pick some of the stories we air on the CBS Evening News with Bob Schieffer.

You, the viewer, are officially in charge of all the assignments of CBS News correspondent Steve Hartman. You get to tell him where to go and what to do — within reason, of course.

Every Friday we present three story pitches and you get to vote for the story you think sounds most interesting. Whichever story gets the most votes by 2 p.m. ET on Monday is the winner.

Last week viewers decided they wanted Steve to report on a teacher who has been teaching at the same high school for 69 years.

While this is a cute idea for me to do on my blog, is this something CBS News should be doing in their newscast?  Is this the evening news or an episode of "Survivor?"  

If CBS News really wants to go this route, I have a better idea to drum up ratings:

"Tonight on Sixty Minutes:  Steve Kroft reports on a new field of cancer research,  Lesley Stahl profiles Howard Schultz, the star of Starbucks,  Ed Bradley sits down with the oldest living teacher in Virginia; and of course — Andy Rooney.   After the stories, the voting lines will be open and ONE CORRESPONDENT WILL BE ELIMINATED."