The 35 Most Powerful People in Media
If you're a ruthless tyrant, an American hero or a star with a story to tell, the must-stops for getting your message out are right here. Despite the near infinite amount of outlets and platforms, the fastest and smartest players -- whether in broadcast or cable, morning or late-night, politics or even comedy -- still drive the national conversation.
The death on April 7 of Mike Wallace -- who for nearly four decades was 60 Minutes' resident pit bull -- is a timely reminder, if we needed one, of the power of rigorous journalism to turn newsmen and women into newsmakers. (See Wallace appreciation on page 46.) In addition to its primary function of keeping viewers informed, entertained and moved to action, TV news continues to mint superstars: Matt Lauer (he just signed a new Today deal that will make him the highest-paid anchor in history), Diane Sawyer (her news bona fides are so well-established, it's hard to imagine she was ever viewed as a beauty-queen lightweight by Wallace, no less), Anderson Cooper (his globe-trotting humanism and unflagging energy have led to not one but three jobs) and Bill O'Reilly (his independent streak has kept him atop the cable-news ratings for 125 consecutive months).
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