MSNBC loses another quarter of its viewers

Rachel Maddow

2013 was another year of decline for cable news, with MSNBC losing almost a quarter of its viewers after similar declines the previous year, according to a new Pew Research study.

“The Nielsen Media Research data show that the biggest decline came at MSNBC, which lost nearly a quarter (24%) of its prime-time audience. CNN, under new management, ended its fourth year in third place, with a 13% decline in prime time,” states the report.

In total, the combined viewership of all three major cable news channels, Fox News, CNN and MSNBC, dropped 11% to its smallest audience since 2007. Not by coincidence, the disapproval rating of President Barack Obama, for whom the likes of CNN and MSNBC have been dutiful water carriers in the midst of numerous scandals, hit a new record high of 59% this week.

Both CNN and MSNBC also lost advertising revenue year on year in line with their falling viewership.

The new figures follow on from reports in November last year that both CNN and MSNBC had lost nearly half their audience over the previous 12 months, with the two networks losing 59% and 52% respectively in the crucial demographic of viewers aged 25 to 54.

The figures serve as yet another reminder that the mainstream media, while still wielding significant influence when it works in unison to push certain talking points, is individually dying as its viewers seek less agenda-driven and more accurate sources of news.

Last year, a Gallup poll found that just 23 per cent of Americans trust the institution of television news.

As we reported last month, a benchmark of the corporate media’s collapse is the fact that the New York Times’s own writers now think that NY Times opinion pieces are seen as “irrelevant” and have no impact on public discourse whatsoever.

Hillary Clinton’s 2011 warning that the United States (or more accurately the Obama administration) was losing the “information war,” has never been more prescient.

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