No, Mark Joyella…MSNBC Dropping Ronan Farrow Was Not A Mistake…
TVNewser’s Mark Joyella writes a silly article about MSNBC’s ratings at 1pm still sucking wind after Ronan Farrow’s show got cancelled.
MSNBC announced on February 19 it would cancel Farrow’s show and The Reid Report, hosted by Joy Reid. The network replaced both shows with a two-hour block of news, anchored by Thomas Roberts, and in the first few weeks, ratings looked good–increasing 37% compared to Ronan Farrow Daily.
While much of the media coverage at the time focused on Farrow, describing him as an inexperienced cable news newcomer, a review of Nielsen data shows removing him hasn’t done much to fix the dayside problem for MSNBC.
Nor would removing Farrow and Reid single handedly reverse trajectory significantly for the network because that is not what ails it. As I wrote recently MSNBC is facing significant downward ratings pressure that is just as much about perception as it is tune out and that the network is facing the cable news ratings equivalent of a bank run, particularly in dayside.
The problem is Phil Griffin still hasn’t thrown in the towel on POV analysis and using progressive programming in its rundown and the viewers know it…or at the very least still believe it to be true. MSNBC has not yet been able to claw back the meme that dayside is for news. These things take time. A lot of time…especially when MSNBC’s programming is still schizoid as it puts non-news people in positions traditionally held by news people.
Just this week, partisan pundit Amy Holmes has been filling in on Way Too Early, a position that previously had been anchored by people from the news division. So the mixed messages are still being sent out by Team Griffin.
But the ultimate joke here is that Joyella is positing the question that because Roberts’ numbers are as bad as Farrow’s were at the end of his run does that mean Farrow shouldn’t have removed? Of course not. Farrow’s problems that got his show cancelled are still as valid today as they were then. Whatever problems Roberts’ two hour block may be having, they have no direct connection to Farrow’s departure. Or at the very least Joyella has failed to make any convincing argument of any linkage.