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Fox And Other Cable News Networks Lose Big Chunks Of Audience

Reported by Ellen - March 14, 2011 -

Fox News, along with CNN and MSNBC, underwent a steep decline of viewers in 2010, a new study has found. As The Hollywood Reporter noted, this is the the first time in 12 years that all three cable news channels have seen dropoffs.

The Hollywood Reporter also noted,

(F)or the first time in the dozen years since (The Pew Project For Excellence In Journalism) has been monitoring the cable news networks, every channel was down. CNN -- with its well-publicized primetime woes -- was down the most in 2010, dropping 37% to 564,000 viewers. But Fox News, the No. 1 cable news network, declined 11 percent. And MSNBC -- which finished 2010 ahead of CNN in primetime in news' target demographic of 25-54-year-olds and total viewers -- was down 5 percent.

"What [the audience erosion] suggests is that we may have reached a peak in cable news viewership," says Amy S. Mitchell, Deputy Director for the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism. "It's not that people are not watching cable, they're just not turning to news as much."

The article goes on to hypothesize that the internet is partly to blame, even though online news is not exactly a new phenomenon. It also suggests that maybe the appetite for opinion journalism has declined. But maybe, just maybe, it's also because none of the news networks are really about the news. It's more about infotainment or political theater. If you don't believe me, just ask Hillary Clinton.

You can read the complete report on the state of the news media here.

(H/T reader Bradley L.)

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