Viewers Continue To Flee Fox News as Ratings Drop for a Second Straight Year

ProudProgressive 2012/03/19 20:31:09

Viewers Continue To Flee Fox News as Ratings Drop for a Second Straight Year
By: Jason Easley
March 19, 2012

While CNN and MSNBC both saw their ratings grow in 2011, Fox News saw their ratings drop by 3% for the second straight year.

According to the Pew Research Center’s Project For Excellence in Journalism’s The State of the News Media 2012 report, viewership for all cable news was up 1% in daytime and 1% in primetime. CNN saw their ratings rise by 16%. Despite the loss of Keith Olbermann, MSNBC’s prime time audience grew by 3%. The network’s daytime audience was up 20%. The ratings surge at CNN was a temporary blip caused by the tsunami in Japan and the Arab Spring. Without breaking news, CNN sinks to third place.

Fox News continues to lose viewers, but remains highly profitable. How can a network lose viewers, but increase profits? The answer is that Fox News demands the highest licensing fee from carriers in all of cable news. All subscribers pay an additional seventy eight cents a month to have Fox News carried on their system. This was an 11% increase in 2011 and one of the main reasons why Fox News can lose viewers, but set a record for profits.

Even if you never watch Fox News, as long as it is carried by your cable or satellite system, you are still adding to Rupert Murdoch’s fortune. If people really want to stop Fox News, they need to be pushing Congress to pass a la cart legislation that will allow viewers to pick and choose the networks that they want to pay for instead of being forced to subsidize channels that they can’t stand.

There are three warning signs on the road ahead for Fox News. It is likely that Fox News will continue to lose viewers in the future because they have the oldest audience on television. The average age of a Fox News viewer is 65 years old. Younger people aren’t replacing the older viewers that the network is losing on a yearly basis, which means that if things stay as they are, the network is fighting a losing battle against Father Time.

The Internet is also posing a big threat to Fox News’s bottom line. A 2011 study by Credit Suisse, found that 25% of cable/satellite customers plan to cancel their service in the next five years. Subscribers are threatening to cancel because they are realizing that they can get much of the programming that they receive on their televisions right now on the Internet for less. If 25% of subscribers canceled, it would be a big blow to all three cable news networks, but it would hurt Fox News the most.

The biggest dilemma facing Fox News is a problem that they created for themselves. After years of moving to the hard right and making inflammatory rhetoric a staple of their programming, Roger Ailes is trying to move the network back to the middle. The problem is that the core part of the network’s audience still resides on the far right. To put this in political terms, Fox News wants to be Mitt Romney, but their audience craves Rick Santorum.

The far right audience may not react well to the new moderate Fox News. In fact, the door may be opening for a bit of competition for the conservative viewership. The same battle that is playing out for control of the Republican Party among the far right and the party establishment could replicate itself on the cable news landscape.

There are only 1.9 million daily Fox News viewers, but Fox News is available in 102 million homes. This means that 100 million American households are subsidizing the right wing hate of Fox News. If the American people ever wake up and realize that they are paying for a network that many of them disagree with, and demand to be given the ability to financially support only the channels that they watch, the future of Fox News will be in doubt.

Read More: http://www.politicususa.com/fox-news-ratings-drop-...

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Top Opinion

  • Thom Payne 2012/03/19 20:38:43
    Thom Payne
    Not surprising. When you carry all the 'news' unfit for human consumption eventually people will turn their back on you.

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  • LisaBriggs41 2012/11/13 04:58:49
    This FOOLISHNESS needs to stop..President Obama has won and people needs to get over it..They were trying to take America back, back the way it WAS 50 to 65 years ago..But America isn't going backwards but forwards..America is NOW open for attack from our enemies who are watching us and seeing the weak spots of this nation..Lying in wait to hurt the people again because really we have stop watching and started fighting each other...This job of being the president ISN'T a job just for the white man anymore but any man or woman can be the president..We are one of the greatest nation in this world and we should be better than this, that race or color determines who can be president..This nation is made of any races and people not just one set of people..And the lord God doesn't just respect one of people but ALL of us who believe in him..But people simply can't get over President Obama's second term in office that some people want to divide the nation and let us be concorded by our enemies..This IS pure HATE and you think you are right in your hate that you can't see anything else especially the damage we are doing to our souls..How many of you are better than you were four and half years ago? I am, I was able to open a small business with the help of the government to give back to the nation..People please stop the hate, look beyond to what you are saying and doing.The Lord God is watching and the world is too...
  • Fannie 2012/03/20 02:11:57
    Fox is a national menace to the USA.
  • jackolantyrn356 2012/03/20 01:56:48
    The Democrat Festival of LIES hasn't got FOX yet. Maube it is the constant lies from other Stations as inserted by Obama/
  • santa6642 2012/03/20 00:52:52
    Pure BS like the obamanation.
  • dave b 2012/03/20 00:18:13
    dave b
    Oh....another left leaning poll courtesy of PU polls. They are soooooo accurate (if you dont mind the lies) which most of you Progressive droolers dont mind at all.
  • Waldorf 2012/03/19 23:31:30
    Which all-news network is better? Yes, it was a disappointment to see Judge Napolitano leave his show.
  • luvguins 2012/03/19 22:26:30
    Entering stage right now will be all the righty Fox sheep bragging how they are number one in Cable News. Truth is that 50% of voters watch no cable news at all, and many instead watch the nightly news on the major networks. So if 160+ million people vote in 2012 only 2 million max will have been regular watchers of the Fox Disinformation Network, and according to a study done by Farleigh Dickenson University the non-watchers will be more informed.
  • Idiot repubs 2012/03/19 21:24:24
    Idiot repubs
    I hear fox's ratings were at an all time low, I saw it right here on Sodahead!
  • keymanjim 2012/03/19 21:12:48
    Are you dizzy from all that spin?

    dizzy spin
  • Sport_Geoff 2012/03/19 21:05:40
    Oooooops -

    For February FOX had the top 12 shows........

    The cable news ratings for February 2012 are in, and things were not business as usual.

    Like clockwork, Fox News cleared the top of the list. The network, which celebrated ten years in first place, claimed the top twelve programs in total viewers. However, the ratings weren't all positive for Fox News. Overall, the network was down -3% in total viewers and down -13% in the coveted A25-54 demo, compared to this time last year. There had been extensive coverage of Arab Spring last February

    Hmmm...if we applied some of that Obama accounting trick math with seasonal adjustments I wonder what the number would be for the -13% (from last year)

    And whose down there in last place?......oh yeah....CNN Newsroom
  • Thom Payne 2012/03/19 20:38:43
    Thom Payne
    Not surprising. When you carry all the 'news' unfit for human consumption eventually people will turn their back on you.
  • Roger47 2012/03/19 20:36:21
    Fox News is trying to move to the center? Seriously? This would be a good thing, but the damage has been done. They have created a monster. A large segment of the population that believe things that are not true, and vote based on those falsehoods.

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