CNN Goes Into Apparel Business With Headline T-Shirts

<!–con_frankshats30rock158.jpg–>Michael wrote in to point out that CNN has a weird new feature on its site—now you can proudly display your favorite, uh, headlines(?) on your body with their “CNN Shirt” service. It’s beta, naturally, and they pick the headlines you can choose from—so no “What drove dad who kept ‘house of horror’?” tee to shame your parents during the next family holiday. (That’s the current top headline on their home page.)

Michael seemed as confused as us:

I’m not sure what to make of it. “Nominee for 2008 Stupidest Web 2.0 Idea” comes to mind, along with “something I’d expect from Fox News before CNN”. Or maybe it’s funny, if I enjoy walking around with “40-lb. hunk of metal hits driver in face” on my chest.

We think CNN is missing some good sales opportunities with their current paltry selection. After all, right there on the home page tonight are three very good potential t-shirt slogans under the Video section, going completely unused:

  • Sleepy bear can’t stay awake
  • Baby found in house of filth
  • 7-minute battle with death

Update: Looks like CNN did tap “sleepy bear” and the “battle with death” slogans after all—but they messed them up with extra words.

Update 2: Ooo! Ooo! We want a t-shirt that says, “CNN Reporter Arrested With Meth And Sex Toy In Central Park” please, CNN.

CNN Shirt [CNN]
(Photo: “30 Rock”/NBC)


Edit Your Comment

  1. azntg says:

    Um… O…kay?

  2. lightaugust says:

    Pretty sure this had to have been dreamt up after a random day of cruising, just you know, 18 years after they thought it up.

  3. elemeno says:

    Earlier this week you could put whatever you wanted into the URL and it would print on the shirt. Guess they fixed that. I wonder if they’ll still ship my “Rupert Murdoch raped me and all i got was this lousy t-shirt” shirt.

  4. Also, CNN wants photo evidence of you wearing your new adpparal:

    I took my CNN shirt on vacation, and I have great pictures. Where can I send them?
    Please upload any photos of you wearing a CNN Shirt to Your photo will be considered for future contests and our CNN Shirt photo archive. []

  5. bivka says:

    Click any of the available shirt links and take a close look at the URL — you used to be able to change it to whatever you wanted! Looks like they fixed it, though..

  6. unravel says:

    @Michael Belisle: I know what you’re getting for Christmas.

  7. Marsupial says:

    I saw this tonight for the first time — I thought it was really bizarre. Are they just banking that their witty headline writers will come up with something that so perfectly encapsulates the human experience in five words that everyone will need it on a t-shirt? Let’s see: “Time capsule scroll intrigues school.” No, that one’s not so good; “Expired food sold at low, low prices.” Ok, well, maybe that one works. Still, .500 is a high average to keep up.

  8. adambadam says:

    @Marsupial: Could not agree more. Especially for $15 a pop.

  9. dragonfire81 says:

    I think a shirt that simply says “This CNN.” with a picture of James Earl Jones on it would be the best option if CNN really really wants to do shirts.

  10. unpolloloco says:

    I want a “Clinton News Network” shirt! How can I get one???

  11. benko29 says:

    oh my god i have to have “Oops! Dad gives boy, 7, booze at game”

  12. doormat says:

    Did they fix their system so you cant write your own shirt anymore? I know a week or so ago on Fark people figured out how to put in their own headlines and it was hilarious.

  13. ironchef says:

    How about a snarky “Anderson Cooper guest hosts on Regis and Kelly. I saw it on CNN.”

  14. bsalamon says:

    weekly world news had something like this

  15. “Would you like an apple pie wit dat….?”

  16. BigElectricCat says:

    Mother of Eight Makes Hole in One

    New Bridge Held up by Red Tape

    Iraqi Head Seeks Arms

    Queen Mary Having Bottom Scraped

    Eye Drops Off Shelf

    Farmer Bill Dies in House

    Air Head Fired

  17. SlappySquirrel says:

    “Incest family holds ‘astonishing’ reunion”


  18. chgoeditor says:

    Um, did they forget to launch this on April Fool’s Day. (Or, worse yet, was it an April Fool’s Day idea that the powers-that-be actually liked?)

  19. Yoooder says:

    Consumerist forgot to mention that these shirts aren’t for everyone. In fact, the cotton garments require a PC or Mac:

    What are the minimum computer specifications required to use CNN Shirts?

    * Microsoft Windows®: 98SE, 2000, Millennium Edition, XP Home Edition, or XP Professional
    * Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5, Netscape Navigator 7, Firefox 1 or Opera 7.51
    * 128 megabytes (MB) of RAM
    * Broadband Internet connection or access to a high-speed network
    * Super VGA (800 x 600) or higher resolution


    * Mac OSX
    * Safari 1.2, Firefox 1 or Opera 7.51
    * 256 megabytes (MB) of RAM
    * Broadband Internet connection or access to a high-speed network
    * Super VGA (800 x 600) or higher resolution


  20. mmstk101 says:

    @BigElectricCat: “Queen Mary Having Bottom Scraped”

    hahaha . . . gross.

  21. mmstk101 says:

    I think it’s been taken down, because I can’t find the link but CNN had a story a while back with the title:

    “Man Mistaken for Water Rodent, Shot in Face”

    now THAT would look great on a shirt!

  22. spinachdip says:

    @lightaugust: “Area bassist fellated”

  23. spinachdip says:

    Your sisters over at Gawker has an extensive depository of CNN headlines:


  24. ophmarketing says:

    Even when you COULD alter the URL to make your own shirt caption, it wouldn’t let you add that shirt to your cart. It was mildly amusing to see it on the screen, though.

  25. drjayphd says:

    @spinachdip: Kind of partial to this one myself.

  26. mammalpants says:

    eff that! i want a Wolf Blitzer Beard!

  27. mammalpants says:

    also, isn’t this admission that they consider their own news to be sensational?

  28. Orv says:

    I think they stole this idea from The Onion.

  29. BigElectricCat says:


    The back page of each issue of Columbia Journalism Review always has the most delicious two-headed headlines, poorly-captioned photos and craptacular writing.

    It’s like LOLcats for journalists.

  30. unravel says:

    Yay, there’s a new one!#! “Teen too young for ‘come hither’ pose?”. Eagerly awaiting the day Chris Hansen jumps out of a pantry to confront the guy wearing one of these.

  31. velvetjones says:

    @Orv: think? they totally stole this from The Onion. They were making those tees in the 90s.

  32. rmz says:

    They had one up over the weekend that said “Smuggled workers turned into slaves” or something like that. And you could buy it as a shirt. :)

  33. Duffin (Ain't This Kitty Cute?) says:

    Did anyone happen to notice that they appear to be using Spreadshirt to offer these shirts? Just go to and make your own store. Then you can make take a wide variety of clothing and put whatever you want on it. There’s no minimum or anything, you can make a shirt and order it for less than 15 dollars depending on the type of clothe you use.
    But, yeah, essentially CNN is making money for doing nothing…just make your own and you can put whatever headline YOU want.

  34. ironchef says:

    I would buy a Glenn Beck is a Moron Tshirt.

    That would sell like hot cakes.