Saturday Schadenfreude: Fox News Ratings Down 24% Since Last Summer
by Jonathan Singer, Sat Sep 02, 2006 at 02:08:41 PM EDT
It is perhaps a sign of the times. As approval ratings for the Bush administration and the Republican Congress continue to be mired in the 30s and below, so too has the viewership at Fox News fallen. And fast.
In June, we learned that network chief Roger Ailes was "on the warpath," putting his employees on notice after following a 22 percent drop in the core 25-54 demo and an 8 percent drop among total viewers in the second quarter. Now, Linda Moss of Multichannel News (via TVNewser) reports that ratings at Fox News Channel are down even bigger this summer.
ESPN, Fox News Channel, Nick at Nite and Hallmark Channel all tied with a 1.3 rating. ESPN and Hallmark were each up 18% versus last summer, while Fox News and Nick at Nite were both down 24%. [emphasis added]
In a separate post, Brian at TVNewser reports that ratings at Fox News in August were down 7 percent all day and 28 percent in primetime from the previous August at the same time that both CNN and MSNBC showed significant gains in viewership.
I don't want to overstate these numbers. Fox News still receives more viewers, both all day and during primetime, than CNN and MSNBC -- comined. However, at the same time last year, Fox News had almost twice as many viewers as CNN and MSNBC combined, so they have not only seen their numbers but also an even larger drop in their lead over their competition.
So the era of Fox News' domination of cable news may be coming to an end. And I don't think I'm going to get any arguments from this crowd that that's not a good thing.