As I noted yesterday, one of the reasons Fox can claim such dominance in the 2010 cable news channel ratings is that CNN’s performance this year was so abysmal.
Particularly in primetime. Oy.
As the public gets more accustomed to getting opinion with its news, the middle of the road CNN has found it nearly impossible to hold on to viewers.
It was their lowest rated year in primetime with both total viewers and in the 25-54 demo since 1996.
It is also the first year that MSNBC will beat CNN in total viewers primetime and the second year they have lost to MSNBC in primetime in the 25-54 demographic.
It’s worth noting that in at least two of the cases CNN has taken steps to fix the problem.
Even so, it is a big problem. Time for CNN to decide what it wants to be: opinion or news. This half-way mark between the two — too scared to be opinionated, too interested in entertaining to be hard core news — is clearly going no where.
Anderson Cooper, who just signed signed a big deal to host a syndicated daytime TV talk show beginning this fall had his lowest rated year ever in the 25-54 demo and second lowest in total viewers.
Simplified: He dropped 32% in total viewers and 34% in the demo.
It seems unfair the pick on Larry King who has vacated his prime time spot at CNN to make way for incoming Piers Morgan. But his ratings drop in 2010 was significant and contributed to the overall drop at the network.
King lost nearly half his total viewers in 2010 (dropping from 1, 098, 000 to 672, 000) as well as more than a third of his demo viewers .
So this is not a surprise. CNN's new 8pm show has been struggling since it launched in October. But oof.
In a year over year comparison -- you will recall Campbell Brown occupied this slot last year -- Parker Spitzer is down 37% in total viewers and 36% in the 25-54 demo. They should make a New Year's resolution to change this to Eliot Spitzer Live And Uncensored...or something.
Changes are afoot here as well with anchor John Roberts departing and HLN's Robin Meade rumoured to be a possible replacement.
And for good reason. CNN's morning show clocked in its lowest year in both total viewers and in the 25-54 demo dropping 31% in the former and 25% in the later.
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