Don’t buy the headlines and hype about CNN reclaiming second place. It was a pyrrhic victory. CNN’s July was abysmal. MSNBC’s was worse. Both networks hemorrhaged massive numbers of viewers. CNN lost -23% of total viewers and -32% of 25-54 demo viewers over last year. MSNBC did even worse; losing a whopping 33% of demo viewers over July of last year.
No amount of spin can salvage the fact that MSNBC and CNN are dying cable news networks. Between the border, Ukraine, and Gaza, July was a huge news month domestically and abroad. Moreover, the viewership collapse at these two-left-wing networks cannot be shrugged off as some larger trend that claims Americans are going elsewhere for their news. Because…
Fox News was up +8% in total viewers and up +2% in demo viewers when compared to July of last year.
MSNBC is in such bad shape that in the all-important demo, the network collapsed into fourth place behind HLN.
MSNBC’s woes are obviously tied to the fate of Barack Obama. Since turning to the shrill left, MSNBC has always been about the cult of personality. At first, that cult was about the hard-left’s seething hatred of President George W. Bush. In 2008, the network became a cult of personality to rally around and then protect Obama. Now that Obama’s presidency is falling apart, MSNBC looks the final gone-mad remnants of a Jim Jones after-Kool-Aid party.
CNN, of course, is a rolling disaster of hysterical left-wing bias and some of the most unappealing anchors ever assembled under one logo. And the network knows it. Chief Jeff Zucker is slowly turning CNN into a reality show channel. Though only somewhat successful, that has been his most successful move, thus far. Expect more.
John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC