A number of news outlets are reporting that CNN’s overall ratings have been experiencing really nothing less than a massive decline over the last 18 months or so. According to AdWeek, CNN experienced a whopping 25 percent drop in their primetime viewership over the last year, which put CNN under the million-mark in terms of total daily viewers; I think CNN is lucky if they get half a million viewers during their daytime coverage, and they are pulling in just about 800 thousand for their primetime viewership. In fact, one week, I believe it was in May, their primetime viewership dropped by an astonishing 35 percent; that is over a third of their viewers basically checked out over the course of a week. A third of CNN viewers stopped watching!
Now by comparison, Fox News during that same week experienced nearly a 10 point increase in viewership; in fact, Fox has actually increased its viewers by 5 percent over the course of the last year, and is drawing between 1.5 to 2 million viewers per day, its primetime line up drawing 2-3 million nightly. In fact, Fox has been the number one cable news network for over 200 consecutive months; it is really nothing short of astonishing what they have been able to do here in terms of their dominance. And even the ultra-liberal MSNBC is blowing away CNN; though MSNBC has experienced a decline as well, about 10 percent fall in THEIR viewership over the last year, but they are still attracting just over a million viewers for their nightly primetime lineup, way, way, way ahead of CNN.
These numbers are but the latest in CNN’s ratings tumble that is been going on for quite some time now. For example, just this past April, according to the Nielson ratings, it was reported that while Fox and MSNBC were numbers 1 and 2 respectively in overall ratings for cable, network primetime, CNN plummeted to 11th place among all primetime cable networks. It is not even in the top 10. Given that the first and second place are going to news networks, it is not as if people have just tuned out from news coverage. They are just tuning out of CNN’s coverage.
By the way, it has gotten worse: the Nielson ratings released in the last couple of weeks show that CNN has dropped further to 13th place among cable network channels. If you want a sense of how bad things are, that 13th place actually puts CNN behind the Food Network. The Food Network has more viewers than CNN; there are more people who would rather watch a cook zest lemons than sit through the daily rantings of Don Lemon.
It is not surprising that CNN has had to layoff workers this year; back in February I believe. And that was even after CNN experienced something of a Trump-bump. Donald Trump was the greatest thing ever to happen to the news media. There has NOT been a single day in the last two or three years, since he announced he was running for president, when Trump was not the lead story in news coverage and headlining the frontpage of newspapers and the like. And CNN profited off of this big time. The age of Trump had previously given CNN some of the network’s highest revenues and ratings in their history. But obviously, they miscalculated here. They miscalculated in that they thought people were tuning in to get critical coverage of Trump, that viewers were genuinely very concerned about this horrible mistake the nation made on November 8th, 2016, and perhaps the original viewers of CNN during this time period were genuinely concerned. But then, to put it rather mildly, CNN just completely lost it. Their coverage became nothing short of hysterical and frankly conspiratorial. You have Jim Acosta having daily temper tantrums in the White House press briefing room. In terms of their weekly lineup, you have got nothing but one speculative segment after another on the whole Russian collusion nonsense, which then turned into the whole Stormy Daniels fiasco, that of course went nowhere. In fact, one report, I think it was from the Blaze, cited a stat that CNN had Stormy Daniels’ lawyer, that shameless publicity hound, they had him on their programs more than five dozen times in a matter of weeks. Who on earth wants to sit through that! No wonder the Food Network is getting higher ratings.
Of course, it is not ALL CNN, since the percentage of viewership for cable television overall is declining. They declined by about 3 percent last year in terms of total viewership. The network news outlets, you know, NBC, CBS, ABC, they fell by about 4 or 5 percent. In fact, people are actually watching less and less television in general, especially when it comes to news. Pew Research did a study and found that an average of just 37 percent of American adults got their news from television on a regular basis back in 2017, which was down nearly 50 percent from the previous year. So television news in general is really plummeting in terms of total number of viewers.
More and more people are getting their news from what scholars call the ‘network society’ which is made up of virtual communities, like what we have here on YouTube; more and more people are recognizing that they have a significant amount of control and indeed influence over their news, and they recognize that news reflects a worldview, how events are selected and interpreted involves a particular view of life from the vantage point of the reporter, and populations are increasingly choosing news outlets that reflect their values, their worldview, and in an increasingly conservative age, where populations are turning to nation, culture, and tradition as a sustainable way of life, these corporatist globalist media outlets like CNN look increasingly implausible and indeed, frankly, silly.
We live in a world today where more people own a mobile device than a toothbrush; where if Facebook were country it would have the largest population on the earth. It should not surprise us that we are transitioning from an old media context that largely lectures its constituents on news events and interpretations to a new network society wherein the constituents are active participants in what constitutes a news event and its variant interpretations. This is why I always encourage you to comment on every posts/video that I do, because in the new media, the world of a network society, you are actually part of the news.
Now, having said that, what is so interesting here is that local television news is still very popular; more people get their news from their local news stations than they do the big networks or cable news. What is so cool here when it comes to local news is that we are in the midst of an acquisition of an organization known as Tribune Media which is being bought out by a pro-Trump media conglomerate called Sinclair Broadcast Group; and if this acquisition goes through that would effectively put this pro-conservative corporation in charge of local news outlets that are estimated to reach upwards of 70 percent of the American population. Now, of course, liberal news outlets such as CNN and Rolling Stone and The New Yorker are all up in arms about this, they think it is a completely unprecedented power grab; and in one sense, they are right. Of course, no one is listening to them, they killed off their viewers, as it were. This is the consequence of becoming the Conspiracy Nut Network. NOBODY’S LISTENING TO THEM ANYMORE. And so, it does look like the Trump administration has cleared the way for the Sinclair Group to gobble up both print media and television outlets to achieve precisely this kind of media domination, all coming from a nationalist populist world and life view.
Poor CNN, they continue to implode as they peddle in fake news, all the while conservative nationalist and populist news outlets are growing by leaps and bounds. It really does appear that the old secular liberal globalist media outlets are history, but I would not feel too bad for them, after all Don Lemon can always learn to cook……
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