Reliable Sources with Brian Stelter-logo

Reliable Sources with Brian Stelter


Reliable Sources examines how journalists do their jobs and how the media affect the stories they cover in this weekly CNN program. Full video episodes available in the iTunes store.

Reliable Sources examines how journalists do their jobs and how the media affect the stories they cover in this weekly CNN program. Full video episodes available in the iTunes store.


Washington, DC


Reliable Sources examines how journalists do their jobs and how the media affect the stories they cover in this weekly CNN program. Full video episodes available in the iTunes store.






One CNN Center Atlanta, GA 30303 404-827-1500


July 5, 2020: Covid-19 coverage in Texas, Arizona and Florida; how Trump is speaking the language of Fox News; Ted Boutrous on Trumpworld's pattern of legal intimidation

Plus... Dr. Anthony Fauci's disappearances from national TV shows; Dr. Seema Yasmin on the press as the 'immune system of a democracy;' behind the 'Tucker Carlson 2024' chatter. Mindy Marques Gonzalez, Kathy Tulumello, Steve Riley, Dr. Seema Yasmin, Douglas Brinkley, Ted Boutrous and Alex Thompson join Brian Stelter.


James Fallows on a 'national-scale Titanic' and why reporters must keep investigating the U.S. response to the pandemic

The Atlantic's James Fallows talks with Brian Stelter about his recent article that imagines a National Transportation Safety Board probe into the U.S. pandemic response. Fallows shares his reporting about critical leadership failures that occurred in January and February. Stelter points out that the president's missteps line up with a timeline of Fox News coverage. Fallows says Fox is an "outside distorting pressure which has changed everything about decisions inside the administration, and...


June 28, 2020: Facebook exec responds to ad boycott campaign; pro-Trump outlets are downplaying Covid-19 dangers; 'what is the cost of lies?'

Plus... Susan Glasser on the view from Trump's 'Hannity bunker,' Bill Moyers on Facebook's 'garbage,' and Jake Tapper on the origins of new movie 'The Outpost.' Joan Lunden, Kristen Powers, David Zurawik, Susan Glasser, Jake Tapper, Nick Clegg, and Bill Moyers join Brian Stelter.


Kurt Andersen on 'Fantasyland' thinking about the pandemic and America's long-held taste for mistruths

"Believe-whatever-you-want fantasy is deeply embedded in our DNA," journalist Kurt Andersen wrote in his 2017 book "Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire." Brian Stelter asks him to apply the lessons of "Fantasyland" to the Covid-19 crisis. Andersen also discusses the American affinity for "ultra-individualism," Trump's disconnect from "reality-based" Americans, and the impact of the QAnon conspiracy theory.


June 21, 2020: How the 'no-show protest' of Trump's rally originated; what the rallies look like from beyond America's borders; why Stelter says Trump's ignorance proves the need for media literacy

Plus... Astead Herndon's reporters notebook from Tulsa; Carl Bernstein on Trump's mood swings; inside the mass firings at the U.S. Agency for Global Media. Mary Jo Laupp, Astead Herndon, Jasmine El-Gamal, Guy Snodgrass, Karen Kornbluh, Sarah Ellison, Anthony Scaramucci and Carl Bernstein join Brian Stelter.


Dr. Richard Besser on 'radio silence' from government experts and 'pandemic fatigue' among the public

Public health science and communication "are inextricably linked," says Dr. Richard Besser, former CDC acting director, ABC News medical expert, and president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. He and Brian Stelter discuss the "unmet need" for clear and cohesive messaging from federal officials about Covid-19. "It's practically radio silence at the federal level from political leaders as well as public health leaders in terms of where we are and what needs to be done," he says....


June 14, 2020: Brian Stelter challenges Trump attorney Jenna Ellis; Sara Sidner on her experience 'from Ferguson to Floyd;' is the Trump admin keeping medical experts off the air?

A racism reckoning for the media industry? Plus... Why the press should be careful when forecasting "waves;" an interview with journalist Linda Tirado, who was blinded at a protest and is now suing police. Dr. James Hamblin, Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal, Dan Diamond, Jenna Ellis, Sara Sidner, Linda Tirado, Tai-Heng Cheng and Farai Chideya join Brian Stelter.


Alexis Johnson, barred from protest coverage at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, tells her side of the story

"Who exactly does objectivity serve? And is there a difference between objectivity and fairness?" Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter Alexis Johnson joins Brian Stelter to discuss turmoil at the paper, which stems from management’s decision to stop Johnson from covering Black Lives Matter protests because she posted a satirical tweet about riots. Executive editor Keith Burris said she showed "bias." Johnson says, "To think that no reporter has bias, and to think that no newsroom has bias... is...


June 7, 2020: Masha Gessen on 'Surviving Autocracy;' Nikole Hannah-Jones on NYT op-ed controversy; Jemele Hill on newsroom diversity failures

Plus... Brian Stelter on the president telling you not to believe your eyes; Alexi McCammond on White House coverage; Karen Attiah on the need for newsroom integration; and a message from CNN's master control operations team. Karen Attiah, Jemele Hill, Nikole Hannah-Jones, Oliver Darcy, Alexi McCammond and Masha Gessen join Brian Stelter.


Stories from the frontlines: Reflections and suggestions from journalists covering the George Floyd protests

Brian Stelter speaks with six journalists covering the anti-racism protests across America during a Society of Professional Journalists webinar titled "stories from the frontlines: journalists and protests." The panel addresses the troubling spate of attacks on journalists; offers tips to stay safe; and reflects on the "extraordinary moment" for journalists of color and the state of newsroom diversity. This week's guests: Dorothy Tucker, CBS-Chicago investigative reporter and president of...


May 31, 2020: Covering the protests and riots sweeping America; reporters arrested and assaulted in several major cities; amid the unrest, press must explain 'how we got here'

Plus... Reporters in Minneapolis describe dodging tear gas and rubber bullets; Errin Haines says news outlets should "center" the stories of peaceful protestors; is Facebook like a chemical factory polluter? Omar Jimenez, Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Jane Coaston, Errin Haines, David Zurawik, David Frum, Roger McNamee and Yael Eisenstat join Brian Stelter.


CNN's media reporters reflect on the three months that changed everything — and what the next three months may bring

Oliver Darcy, Kerry Flynn, Donie O'Sullivan, Frank Pallotta and Chloe Melas talk with Brian Stelter about all the ways the pandemic has upended the worlds of media, tech, and entertainment. "Even the media companies that I thought were the strongest and would be able to survive without making any cuts -- they've been forced" to make changes, Flynn says. Darcy and O'Sullivan call out the shortcomings of social media platforms. Pallotta and Melas discuss the movie, music and live event...


May 24, 2020: Ben Smith on his scrutiny of Ronan Farrow's reporting; Dan Abrams on decision to publish column by Matt Lauer

Plus... Garry Kasparov says Trump lowering the moral bar for us all; the significance of Trump's hostility toward VOA; The Atlantic's Ed Yong on America's 'patchwork pandemic'; NYT's Jennifer Senior: Trump doesn't believe what he can't see... Garry Kasparov, Ed Yong, Jennifer Senior, Ben Smith, Dan Abrams, Sunlen Serfaty and Matt Armstrong join Brian Stelter.


NPR's Nancy Barnes on pandemic coverage and Eric and Wendy Schmidt's big new donation

Nancy Barnes, NPR's senior VP of news and editorial director, talks with Brian Stelter about the recent $4.7 million gift from Eric and Wendy Schmidt. The funds will bolster reporting hubs in California and the Midwest. The gift is "specifically geared towards our efforts to grow local journalism," Barnes says. She also discusses NPR's pandemic coverage, and how the public radio network is faring financially. "The budget hit is significant," she says. "It's almost exclusively related to...


May 17, 2020: Trump's hate movement against the media; former Australian prime minister calls out the 'Murdoch mafia;' Lawrence Wright on parallels between 9/11 and Covid-19

Plus... A tale of two presidents; Trump's pattern of firing government watchdogs on Friday nights; and Garrett Graff on 'the storm we can't see.' Margaret Carlson, April Ryan, Peter Wehner, Garrett Graff, Kevin Rudd and Lawrence Wright join Brian Stelter.


FiveThirtyEight editor Nate Silver on the "known unknowns" of Covid-19 and the need for "humility"

Nate Silver, editor-in-chief of FiveThirtyEight, talks with Brian Stelter about Covid-19 data and media coverage of the pandemic. From the death rate to the daily number of tests, "any one indicator is going to have its flaws," Silver says. He addresses flaws in the conversation about "reopening" and the predictions of new waves of infections. While Silver says there is a relationship between social distancing efforts and rates of transmission, he warns that "trying to pick up a clear signal...


May 10, 2020: Experts explain the appeal of crazy conspiracy theories; the news media's role in making sense of the pandemic; WH withholding key Covid-19 data from the public?

Plus... an interview with NYT CEO Mark Thompson; Trump versus Voice of America; and a Mother's Day visit with the mom and daughters behind "The Quarantine Times." Maggie Haberman, Catherine Rampell, Oliver Darcy, Renee DiResta, Brendan Nyhan, Mark Thompson, Lisa Napoli, and Laura, Claire and Rachel Lundgren join Brian Stelter.


Author Lisa Napoli on CNN's birth, the creation of the 24-hour news cycle, and the rise of 'news junkies'

In the new book "Up All Night: Ted Turner, CNN and the Birth of 24-Hour News," reporter Lisa Napoli recounts how Ted Turner's vision sparked a media revolution. Napoli speaks with Brian Stelter ahead of CNN's 40th birthday on June 1. She recalls her own internship at the fledging channel in 1981; the forgotten figures who made the channel into what it is today; and the international reach of CNN.


May 3, 2020: Carl Bernstein on the 'war on truth;' how Johns Hopkins maps every confirmed Covid-19 case; Katharine Viner on the 'coronavirus crackdown'

Plus... Brian Stelter's essay on the need for hard truths at a very hard time; how America's handling of the Covid-19 crisis is viewed abroad; and a thank you message to members of the media who cannot work from home. Carl Bernstein, Beth Blauer, Jennifer Nuzzo, Olivia Nuzzi, Ryan Lizza, Katharine Viner and Jake Tapper join Brian Stelter.


Former VOA director David Ensor on Trump's attacks: 'There's something in the water... and it's not good'

What is driving President Trump's recent barbs at the federally-funded news outlet Voice of America? David Ensor, former director of VOA, speaks with Brian Stelter about the president's attacks and the news organization's mission. Contrary to the White House's claims, VOA has "done a thorough job of covering and uncovering Chinese misinformation," he says. "It is a truthful news organization that really tries to get to the bottom of things and that represents all views on issues."