Fake news. A phrase that has become synonymous with the Trumpian era of journalism. Since President Donald Trump came into power, there has been an ongoing national conversation in the US centred around journalism, the media, and the difference between truth and fact.
CNN’s latest campaign with Figliulo&Partners, Facts First, sets out to cement the news network’s media role in an era of great uncertainty and enormous mistrust. The relatively spartan ad has no loud branding or assertive statements about the legacy of CNN. It is a simple, not-so-subtle nod to the US President’s tweeting habits where, sometimes for him, an apple could be a banana.
Facts First is designed to remind people who CNN are and what they do, directly opposing the allegations that it publishes so called “fake news”. Their assertion is that their reporting starts with a fact, and never with falsified statements.
The ad is part of the wider conversation that publications such as the New York Times’ also entered into, with their truth-centric slots from Droga5. Although a witty play on a greater conversation, Facts First also carries a powerfully simple message at its heart: facts are indisputable and so is the news. Opinion only follows on from fact, it cannot change the truth.