Dear Commons Community,
For those who enjoy news programs on cable TV, you are part of a growing trend.
In a year that featured a number of prominent news stories — a presidential campaign upended by Donald Trump, civic unrest in Baltimore, Pope Francis’s visit to the United States and deadly terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, Calif. — the number of people tuning in to the top 24-hour cable news channels went up, according to Nielsen. As reported by the New York Times:
“Fox News once again dominated the competition in 2015, while CNN had significantly improved ratings and MSNBC had a slight bounce in viewers.
For the 14th consecutive year, Fox News led in total viewers and in the 25-to-54-year-old demographic crucial to advertisers. The network’s average of 1.8 million viewers in prime time placed it second among all cable channels, the highest finish for a cable news channel ever. (ESPN came in first.)
CNN had strong growth, with a total-day average of 490,000 viewers, representing its highest viewership in six years and a 23 percent bump over last year. In the crucial 25-to-54 demographic it was up 18 percent, and the network also had gains of better than 30 percent in prime time in both total viewers and in the 25-to-54 segment.
MSNBC had a 2 percent increase in average viewers, to a total-day average of 352,000, but it struggled elsewhere. Coming off a rough performance in 2014, the channel lost an additional 19 percent of its viewers in the 25-to-54 demographic in prime time and 18 percent in that demographic in total-day viewers this year.”
In sum, good, bad or indifferent, we cannot get enough of the news!