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The Fox News regimen of ignoring Republican scandals is biting them in the ratings
Posted on May 20, 2017 at 2:00 AM
While you’d think that a White House mired in multiple scandals so severe as to already start mutterings about impeachment, a mere hundred-plus days in, would at least be crackerjack ratings for America’s breaking-news-obsessed cable news networks, Fox News’ policy of ignoring news damaging to Republicans has rendered most of the last few weeks unreportable. And that’s costing them.
[F]or the past week, with Trump mired in scandal, MSNBC has out-rated Fox News in prime time in the so-called “demo.”
Both MSNBC and CNN have seen ratings spikes related to FBI Director James Comey’s firing and the fallout ever since. The Nielsen ratings data suggests that Fox viewers are less interested. […]
So far this week, Fox has ranked No. 3 in prime time behind both CNN and MSNBC, which almost never happens.
It’s because there’s nothing for them to be interested in. While MSNBC and CNN have devoted many hours of airtime to every afternoon’s latest insane news, Fox & Friends, Tucker Carlson and the rest of the network’s ideological programs have largely shifted into reruns mode. College liberals are bad! Hey, remember that time something something Hillary Clinton? If you’re the sort of Fox viewer who leaves the television on to provide you angry, angry company while you putter around doing angry person things, sure, you’ll keep the television on. But any non-diehard viewer who wants to hear about the news of the day has to go somewhere else. Fox News hasn’t gone down in viewership; they’re just getting beaten because the other networks are attracting new viewers.
It’s a key flaw in the Fox business model, after all. When word comes down from on high that you’re not supposed to talk about the thing that the entire rest of the planet is talking about, by golly, you’re going to be sweating for material. When your take on the news of the day, when you finally get around to mentioning it, is that it is boring and uninteresting and nothing anyone should be upset over, your base of extremely suggestible viewers are going to nod their heads and dutifully find it boring and uninteresting.
So then, mission accomplished.