Fox News cruising as usual, but Glenn Beck takes a little spill
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Fox News Channel finishing first in the cable news ratings race is about as newsworthy as Bruce Springsteen closing a show with ‘Born to Run.’
Nonetheless, that the News Corp.-owned cable channel has finished first in viewers and key demographics for 100 months in a row is something of an achievement. In prime time, Fox News averaged about 1.9 million viewers for the month of April. That beat the combined audiences of MSNBC, CNN and HLN.
Not everyone at Fox News is dancing on top of their desks. Glenn Beck has seen his audience fall almost 30% since the start of the year, from about 2.9 million viewers in January to 2.1 million in April.
While the Beck sensation may be slowing, the decline in his audience has hardly made a dent on the lead he enjoys for his 5 p.m. festival of emotions. His rivals should hold off a little on popping the Champagne..
Speaking of rivals, CNN’s Larry King seems to have gotten no ratings boost for his recent personal troubles. His prime-time audience of 670,000 viewers was down 41% compared to April 2009. He was off almost 50% in the 25-54 demographic. He now routinely loses not only to Fox News, but to MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and, in fact, is barely staying ahead of HLN’s Joy Behar. Larry King is not the only King having a hard time at CNN. John King’s 7 p.m. show is getting clobbered as well, losing almost half of Lou Dobbs’ audience from a year ago.
MSNBC, meanwhile, continues to pull away from CNN, beating it in viewers and demographics in prime time. Maddow in particular is seeing her fortunes rise, and she now beats her colleague Keith Olbermann among adults 25-54.
-- Joe Flint