Archive for May, 2012

May Numbers: MSNBC…

Posted in MSNBC on May 30, 2012 by icn2

MSNBC is noting its May ratings…

MSNBC Weekday Primetime Beats CNN By 98% in Total Viewers and 78% in the Demo for the Month

MSNBC Ranks #1 Among Adults 18-34 in Primetime for May

CNN Has Lowest Primetime Performance Since May 2000 and Hits All -Time Lows at 7p and 9p

NEW YORK –May 30, 2012 – MSNBC dominated CNN during the month of May topping the network in all major ratings categories according to data from Nielsen. During the month which marked all-time lows for CNN at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. (since at least 1991) and the lowest M-F primetime performance since May 2000, MSNBC topped CNN by 98% among total viewers and by 78% among A25-54 (223,000 vs. 125,000) in weekday primetime.

MSNBC beat CNN in M-Su Primetime, with an 89% advantage over CNN in A25-54 (216,000 vs. 114, 000) and a 73% lead among total viewers (674,000 vs. 389,000). This marks MSNBC’s largest monthly percentage advantage in M-Su Primetime over CNN ever.
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Four Years is Long Enough…

Posted in Blog Announcements on May 30, 2012 by icn2

If I haven’t burned out your corneas by now, I’ll never get it done…
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Wolf and Jeras out at CNN…

Posted in CNN on May 30, 2012 by icn2

TVNewser’s Alex Weprin scoops that Reynolds Wolf and Jacqui Jeras have been dropped by CNN…

Wolf has been with CNN since 2006. and has specialized in reportage from dramatic weather events such as hurricanes, tornadoes and floods. He was one of CNN’s most prominent correspondents during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster in 2010.

Jeras has been with CNN since 1999, and also dedicated a significant amount of her time covering natural disasters. During Hurricane Katrina Jeras spent 84 hours on the air covering the hurricane and its aftermath.

It’s not like CNN has been doing tons of weather forecasts the past year or two. I see Chad Meyers on CNN talking more about non-meteorlogical things than I see him talking about the weather these days.

Further CNN Changes Coming?

Posted in CNN on May 30, 2012 by icn2

The New York Times’ Brian Stelter writes about the CNN John Berman hire but casts it in terms of the first of many changes likely to come…

Amid internal CNN complaints about the chemistry between the two, it is all but certain that the program will evolve in some way once Mr. Berman comes aboard. CNN declined on Wednesday to comment on potential changes. In a news release, it called Mr. Berman “an anchor” of the program, implying that he would be joined by one if not both of the current anchors.

Other changes to CNN’s weekday newscasts are also expected in the coming months, as dissatisfaction mounts inside the channel and its parent company, Time Warner, about low ratings. Schedule shake-ups have arguably had little effect in the past at CNN, where the ratings tend to rise and fall in accordance with the news cycle.

CNN just rejiggered its dayside so I’m looking at older CNN changes that might be re-evaluated. Piers Morgan is golden. His ratings haven’t been blowing the doors off but he’s the biggest gun not named Anderson Cooper CNN has in the evening. But everything else, including one of the two AC 360 hours, is probably on the table.

Free for All: 05/30/12

Posted in Free For All on May 30, 2012 by icn2

What’s on your mind?

Taking Sides…

Posted in FNC on May 30, 2012 by icn2

Mediaite’s Noah Rothman nails Fox and Friends to the wall for going all in against Obama with a ridiculously partisan in house campaign style ad…

It is a fine line between cheerleading for one side and contributing actively towards a campaign – it is hard not to view this package piece as anything but a negative ad against President Obama. In my estimation, that crosses a line from merely voicing support for a candidate or cause to advocacy and campaigning. While no law prohibits this behavior, it is slightly distasteful and at least partially negligent of the mission of any morning news program — which should be to inform the political debate but not become the subject of it.

One quibble: FNC steadfastly cops out maintains that Fox and Friends is not a news show but an entertainment show, particularly whenever that show is caught doing something it probably shouldn’t have been. Yes, you know it’s BS that it’s not a news show and I know it’s BS but that’s the ludicrous talking point FNC routinely trots out.

Update: TVNewser reports that FNC’s Bill Shine has issued a statement regarding the matter…

A statement from Bill Shine, EVP of programming for Fox News: “The package that aired on FOX & Friends was created by an associate producer and was not authorized at the senior executive level of the network. This has been addressed with the show’s producers.”

CNN’s (Temporary?) Return to the “Three Headed Monster”…

Posted in CNN on May 30, 2012 by icn2

With today’s John Berman hiring news, CNN has returned again to the “Three Headed Monster” format it had been using on the now defunct “American Morning”…at least for the moment. More on that in a bit…

As I wrote several months ago when reviewing “Early Start”, the show had all kinds of chemistry issues between Ashleigh Banfield and Zoraida Sambolin.

Something needs to happen and soon. Early Start with Banfield and Sambolin may be salvageable but not without major adjustments. If the chemistry issues can’t be ironed out, I would not be surprised to see the duo split up in six months time.

In the intervening months since I wrote that, CNN has been trying all kinds of things on the show to get it going. A lot of the experimentation involved bouncing the anchors around the studio; sitting down at the desk, standing up solo for interviews, standing up together, sitting back down, etc. But the chemistry problem remained and all the bouncing in the world wasn’t going to address that. With Berman’s hire, the chemistry equation has been changed.

It’s not clear exactly what Berman’s anchoring duties will entail. Will he be an equal partner with Banfield and Sambolin? Or is CNN merely swapping him in for Christine Romans (who handles headline reading segments in addition to business news)? Judging from the press release I’m betting on the former but it may also mean that Romans’ headline reading segments are going bye-bye as well.

Whatever the case, CNN is moving the show much much closer to the Three Headed Monster format American Morning was using at the time of its demise. While it is true that at the time of its demise American Morning’s ratings were higher than Early Start’s are now, that does not necessarily mean that the Three Headed Monster format is a good idea. I continue to take a dim view of the Three Headed Monster format. With the exception of one show, traditionally it has never been a long term viable format for cable news. The “one exception” has been Fox and Friends and FnF has always been a much more relaxed format compared to what CNN is trying to do with news in the morning.

As such, I’m not convinced that CNN is planning on sticking with the Three Headed Monster long term. I think what the network will do is see who Berman clicks with better; Banfield or Sambolin, and then drop the other from the show.