Cernovich’s 60 Minutes interview train wreck

60 Minutes

60 Minutes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mr Cernovich (hereafter MC) believes his 60 Minutes interview[1] was a success. His supporters[2] and some commentators support that view.[3] Mainstream Media is scared. A different view emerges when we look at in three stages: Before, During, and After.


If he had a media advisor, MC would not have been on the show because there is no upside for the client’s brand.

When the invite appeals to your ego, but is bad for your brand, it is a sure sign to say no. There is no upside since your ego should be second to your brand. To counter this risk, MC claims he used his Gorilla Mindset to succeed.[4]

The Gorilla Mindset did not keep him from accepting the show’s premise. The premise is that he is fake news.[5] To break even he has to show that he was not fake news.

With 60 Minutes, most people will only remember the headline and whether they liked the mark or saw him as the intended villain. Few people remember nuance or details so the frame is important. MC appeared to know this risk and he tried to deal with it by publicising the event on his terms before[6] and after it. The problem is that that only works for his followers. CBS has an audience of millions and a reputation for serious journalism over decades. MC is unknown and, according to an episode where he was the mark, he is a purveyor of fake news.


The episode followed a standard pattern. (Spot the problem.)

Scene one: Opening to set the context, talk about the problem.

Scene Two: Talk to the mark who denies the problem or is the problem. (Bad guy)

Scene Three: Talk to the guy who tells you how the mark or others are doing it (Good guy)

Scene Four: Talk to a reformed or repentant guy. “I’m sorry for the hurt I caused” (Good Guy)

Scene Five: Back to the mark who does not see the problem even though the other guy said he was sorry. The mark continues to defend an untenable position.

Scene Six: Close segment with an overview and get the last word.


First, MC claimed he won. If you have to claim you won, then you’ve probably lost. Champions don’t have to convince the world they are winners. The outcome defines them, not their words. He thinks the goal was to defeat the interviewer.[7] What he failed to do was disprove the premise. MC is still the fake news guy. MC accepted he was part of the problem and this is bad for his brand.

Second, he called the interview fair and good journalism[8] because he was able to respond. This is bad. Why? His stories do not show balance, which he admitted in the segment. He said he would not believe anything Hillary Clinton said.[9] If he understands good journalism as balanced or fair[10] then by his own admission, he is not a good journalist.




[2] See also Mr Cernovich’s Twitter Feed for other supporters congratulating him on his success.

[3] See also






[9] “I don’t take anything Hillary Clinton is going to say at all as true. I’m not going to take her on her word. The media says we’re not going to take Donald Trump on his word. And that’s why we are in these different universes.”

[10] “It was fair. They took their shots at me while giving me a chance to respond,” he said in a statement to Mediaite. “I have no issues with it at all. It was good journalism.”


About lawrence serewicz

An American living and working in the UK trying to understand the American idea and explain it to others. The views in this blog are my own for better or worse.
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One Response to Cernovich’s 60 Minutes interview train wreck

  1. Pingback: Who leaked Susan Rice to Mike Cernovich and why? | Media Meditations

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