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Studies & Research

Pew Report: Network News Viewership Up, Cable News Viewership Down

pew report network evening news audienceIn addition to cable news revenues and local news consolidation, this year’s Pew Research State of the News Media report looks at average viewership for both network and cable news.

An average of 22.6 million viewers watched one of the three network newscasts in 2013, a 2.3% increase from 2012. Last year, evening news viewership was the highest it has been since 2008.

Both “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” and “ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” grew their audiences compared to the previous year, while ratings leader “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” dipped slightly compared to 2012.

Morning news viewership is also up: the three broadcasts averaged 13.4 million viewers in 2013, an increase of 6.7% compared to 2012. Mirroring the evening newscasts, ABC’s “Good Morning America” and “CBS This Morning” were both up compared to the previous year, while NBC’s “Today” was down.

After the jump, the report’s findings on cable news ratings. Read more

Pew Report: 2013 ‘Relatively Weak’ For Cable News Revenues

pew report cable news revenuesIn the annual State of the News Media report, Pew Research finds 2013 was a “relatively weak” year for economic growth among the cable news outlets. Fox News was projected to increase its total revenue by 5% to $1.89 billion, CNN was projected to increase 2% to $1.11 billion and MSNBC was projected to decline by 2% to $475 million, according to SNL Kagan.

Both CNN and MSNBC had ad revenue losses year-over-year. Revenue from license fees — the money that the channels charge cable providers in exchange for carrying their programming — continued to grow. License fee revenue makes up 64% of total intake for CNN and 58% for Fox news.

We’ll have more on the Pew Research report later today.

More Than Half of Americans Who Consume News Daily Rely on Cable News

CableTVA new Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research/American Press Institute survey finds Americans of all ages still desire serious news.

The study found six in 10 say they’d prefer to get their news straight from a news organization, with nighttime narrowly beating out mornings as the most most popular time for viewers to consume their news (26% vs. 24%).

Results also showed more than half of Americans who consume news daily rely on cable news, with the platform also serving as a popular destination for specific topic areas.

Read more

Getting Your News From Facebook, Without Even Knowing It

FBNetworks

Facebook is increasingly becoming a source of news, according to a new study from the Pew Research Journalism Project, but the benefit to network news divisions is yet to be seen.

“People go to Facebook to share personal moments – and they discover the news almost incidentally,” said Amy Mitchell, Pew’s director of journalism research. “The serendipitous nature of news on Facebook may actually increase its importance as a source of news and information, especially among those who do not follow the news closely.” The new survey finds that roughly two-thirds (64%) of U.S. adults use Facebook, and half of those users (47%) “ever” get news there.

Here’s what else the study of 5,173 adults conducted in late August and early September, found:

  • 42% of Facebook news consumers often watch local TV news, as do 46% of all U.S. adults.
  • 23% often watch cable news, compared with 24% of all U.S. adults.
  • 21% often read print newspapers, compared with 27% of the population overall.

But the fact that news outlets share their stories on Facebook is not of great interest to Facebook users.

If a news organization links to a story on Facebook, only 20% of people say that’s reason enough to click on it. The biggest single reason people click on links (at 70%) is interest in the topic. 51% will click because the story is entertaining, 50% because it’s surprising. 37% say a friend’s recommendation is a major reason.

There Are More People Who Watch Both MSNBC and Fox News Than You Think

cable news cross viewingA Pew Research study on news viewership found that more than one quarter of Fox News viewers also watch MSNBC and vice versa.

Pew finds that 28% of people who watch Fox News also watch MSNBC and 34% of MSNBC viewers also watch Fox. Cross-platform numbers are even higher for CNN, with 54% of MSNBC viewers and 44% of Fox News viewers, respectively, also watching CNN.

Despite the crossover, Pew finds each network also has their own singularly-dedicated audience, with Fox News leading the way: 24% of FNC’s viewers watch only Fox, while 23% watch only CNN and 15% watch only MSNBC.

Cable news also has a higher level of viewer engagement than either network or local news. The most dedicated cable news viewers watch an average of 72 minutes a day, compared to 32 minutes for network news viewers and 22 minutes for local news viewers.

Pew conducted the study by analyzing Nielsen data from February 2013. Read the full study here.

Gallup: Public Trust In The Media No Longer At An All Time Low

Good news for those of us in the media business: public trust in the media is up from an all-time low to slightly higher than an all-time low.

According to Gallup’s latest poll measuring public trust in the media, 55% of respondents have “not very much” or “none at all” trust in the media, while 44% have “great deal” or “fair amount” of trust in the media. That is better than last year’s all-time low, when 60% of respondents say they didn’t trust the media, and only 40% saying they did.

The 2013 numbers are more or less identical to the 2011 numbers, and slightly better than 2010′s.

Gallup2013

Republicans, Democrats and independents all had more trust in the media this year than they did last year, though a plurality of Republicans and independents still believe the media in general is “too liberal.” Gallup explains:
Read more

Pew: Journalists Dip In Public Perception Poll

A full 27% of Americans say that journalists contribute “not very much or nothing” to society, according to a survey from Pew. The survey examines different careers, and measures the public perceptions of them. While the military, teachers and doctors led the way, journalists, business executives and lawyers were at the bottom of the pack.

For journalists however, it is the decline since the last time the survey was taken (2009) that is most troubling:

Compared with the ratings four years ago, journalists have dropped the most in public esteem. The share of the public saying that journalists contribute a lot to society is down 10 percentage points, from 38% in 2009 to 28% in 2013. The drop is particularly pronounced among women (down 17 points). About as many U.S. adults now say journalists contribute “not very much” or “nothing at all” to society (27%) as say they contribute a lot (28%).

TV Remains Main Source of News; Fox News Cited As Leading Outlet

Television continues to be the main place Americans turn to for news about current events, with Fox News Channel as the leading source. 55% of those polled by Gallup over four days last month say they get their news on TV. 26% of those simply said television or TV news while 8% said Fox News, followed by 7% who said CNN, and 4% citing local news. As the Gallup pollsters write:

No other specific channel — including MSNBC, PBS, BBC, and all of the U.S. broadcast networks that once dominated the news landscape — is mentioned by more than 1% of Americans.

21% of poll respondents say the Internet is the main source of news while 9% say newspapers or other print publications, followed by radio, at 6%. And TV dominates across all age groups:

Another interesting breakout of the Gallup poll is how news consumption exists based on your politics:

Read more

Pew: Every TV News Outlet Had Coverage Supportive of Same-Sex Marriage

A new survey from Pew’s Project For Excellence in Journalism examines the coverage of gay marriage among the media. The big takeaway: almost every outlet presented more supportive statements in favor of gay marriage than opposing statements against gay marriage, including every TV news outlet.

Pew looked at every segment on gay marriage from March 18-May 12, and classified every statement made on the issue as being supportive of gay marriage, opposed to gay marriage or neutral.

As a whole, the network morning shows presented 44 statements in favor of gay marriage, none opposed, and 56 neutral. The network evening newscasts presented 46 statements in favor of gay marriage, none opposed, and 54 neutral. Each cable news channel was broken down individually. Given the three very different programming strategies of the channels, it was an interesting move, as all three presented far more supporting arguments than opposing arguments:

Poll Shows Most Americans Aren’t Paying Attention to Scandals

Following last week’s trifecta of scandals: Benghazi talking points, IRS targeting and DOJ phone taps, it turns out most Americans don’t give a damn. Late last week, the Pew Research Center surveyed a little more than 1,000 people and asked them if they are following the stories very closely.

26% said they are very closely following the IRS story; 25% are closely following the Benghazi investigation and just 16% are very closely following news about the Justice Department subpoenaing AP reporters’ phone records.

The numbers are greater if you’re a republican and less if you’re a democrat.

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