CNN Opens GOP Debate to All Online Viewers

CNN wants to show advertisers some more money while showing the upcoming GOP debate.

The cable news network said Wednesday it would provide free online streaming across mobile and browser-based platforms of its live coverage of the Sept. 16 debate.

Ordinarily streaming CNN requires subscriber authentication, but the cable net said it was providing a "preview" of TV everywhere, enabling viewers without an MVPD service to live-stream the event, providing advertisers with extra eyeballs to advertisers; CNN is reportedly asking big bucks for spots in the debate.

Fox's coverage of the first debate, which featured some Donald Trump-related fireworks, drew record numbers, and CNN is looking for a similar audience for round two, which it is hosting.

"We’ve had huge advertiser interest across platforms for the debate, and by opening up the free preview, this will give advertisers additional exposure across platforms," a network spokesperson said. "Additionally, we’re digitally inserting ads into the CNNgo experience, which offers additional revenue."

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.