Thursday, December 17, 2009

The cable ratings

A couple of things strike me about Bill Carter's report in today's New York Times about cable news network ratings.

The headline is that while Fox News Channel continues to dominate in viewership, MSNBC has passed CNN. Indeed, CNN's sister channel, HLN, often tops CNN.

What jumps out at me is how relatively small all the numbers are for these national cable networks. For all the talk of cable news' influence and the major networks' decline, the latter still draw many, many more eyeballs.

Also of note to me is that CNN, which has tried to play the game down the middle, that is without the obviously political leanings of Fox on the right and MSNBC on the left, trails the field. The middle is no good for most cablephiles, who prefer to migrate to their own political comfort zones.
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