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Archives: January 2007

Please Tell Julie Banderas That Peter Jennings Died & Tom Brokaw Retired

banderasjan30.jpgMaybe Bill O’Reilly needs a better media analyst. Because last night on the Factor, correspondent Julie Banderas sounded pretty stupid.

Here’s exactly what she said: “NBC has lost over two million viewers since Peter Jennings stepped down. And then Tom Brokaw, his show has lost about, uh, I don’t know, two million viewers.”

ABC’s Stark, FNC’s Cavuto Interview Bush

bushjan31.jpgHow often does a correspondent get this kind of access? Yesterday, ABC’s business whiz Betsy Stark traveled with President Bush aboard Air Force One and conducted two extensive interviews with him during a visit to Peoria, Illinois.
The White House normally only grants this access to an anchor.

Stark asked about the economy, new poll numbers, Iran, and global warming, among other subjects. Here’s a recap.

Today, Neil Cavuto is conducting a sit-down interview with Bush on Wall Street. It’ll air on Your World at 4pm.

O’Reilly & F&F Explore Couric/Gender Bias

Nine days ago, Sean McManus was quoted as saying this about Katie Couric:

  “I think it is a fact there are probably people, both men and women, who are perhaps uncomfortable having a woman anchor the news. The way she is scrutinized, I think sometimes unfairly, quite frankly, I think a lot of that has to do with gender.”

Yesterday, Fox News apparently found out. Bill O’Reilly devoted his Back of the Book segment to it last night, discussing the comments with correspondents Julie Banderas and Kiran Chetry. Here’s what Chetry said:

  “I don’t know if it’s so much that she’s a woman. It’s just, it’s Katie. I mean, she was famous. She was a celebrity. People take pictures of her on the red carpet. Sometimes I wonder, do people have to sort of look past Katie to get their news, and is that what they feel like doing?”

katiejan31.jpgFox & Friends picked up the ball and ran with it this morning, asking if gender bias is to blame for Katie’s bad ratings this morning. Steve Doocy said: “Most of you who have e-mailed us… think that Katie Couric, perhaps once upon a time [was] perky on the Today show, now just does have an agenda…”

Jan. #’s: Imus Up 47 Percent In Viewers

I found this little nugget at the end of Variety’s ratings recap:

“MSNBC’s little-noticed morning host Don Imus grew 47% in total viewers, edging CNN’s American Morning 356,000 to 355,000.”

Is CNN’s morning news emphasis working?

> Also: Fox & Friends was down significantly year-over-year. In Jan. 2006, the show averaged 950,000 total viewers with 347,000 in the demo; in Jan. 2007, it averaged 760,000 with 297,000 in the demo…

> Update: American Morning is down 22 percent in total viewers and down 10 percent in the demo versus last year. AM is 380,000 viewers behind F&F…

Sawyer & Co. Should Feel Like Superman

supermanjan31.jpgViewer response to 20/20′s show on poverty, Waiting on the World to Change, “has been overwhelming,” leaders of two organizations featured in the special tell the Philadelphia Inquirer.

“It’s astounding. The phones have been ringing off the hook,” an Urban Promise Ministries rep says.

More: “One of the featured children, a 4-year-old homeless boy named Ivan Stevens, told Sawyer that he wanted to be Superman so he could help his family. On Monday, stacks of Superman comics — along with Superman pajamas and Superman blankets — began to arrive at the Urban Promise complex…”

“If There Are No Pictures Of The Fighting, Do We Report The Story?”

NBC’s Martin Fletcher is back in Gaza, and he says it’s quite dangerous:

  Nobody is filming the daily fighting between Hamas and Fatah militias, as well as all the other family and revenge-driven shootings among Palestinians in Gaza because the gunmen threaten to kill the cameramen and other journalists.

And this raises a question about the limits of television news. If there are no pictures of the fighting, do we report the story?

The first question of the television news editors is usually: ‘What are the pictures like?’ If we answer, ‘Well, there are 25 dead but we don’t have any pictures,’ then the response will often be, ‘OK, well we’ll pass.’

So the Palestinian gunmen’s threats work. They don’t want to be seen shooting at each other because it’s bad for their image. They threaten the journalists, and they mean it.

Here’s the full blog entry…

Moody Teaches FNCers: “Seeing An Item On A Website Does Not Mean It Is Right”

Two days ago, an e-mailer remarked: “Wouldn’t it be nice to see the Moody memos from the days around the Obama story?”

Now we can see one of them. The Sleuth quotes John Moody‘s editorial note on Jan. 23:

“For the record: seeing an item on a website does not mean it is right. Nor does it mean it is ready for air on FNC. The urgent queue is our way of communicating information that is air-worthy. Please adhere to this.”

Fox Journos “Frozen Out” By Obama; But Two Conversations With Ailes May Help

Sources tell the WP blog The Sleuth that Barack Obama‘s camp “has ‘frozen out’ Fox News reporters and producers in the wake of the network’s major screw-up in running with the erroneous Obama-the-jihadist story.”

Since the incident, “Obama has given interviews to ABC, CNN, CBS and NBC — pretty much every other network except Fox.” Carl Cameron managed to get a few words from Obama on Monday, but it “wasn’t prearranged; Cameron walked alongside Obama, who didn’t even stop while answering the questions.”

But, Mary Ann Akers reports, “no one is suggesting the icy conditions are permanent. In fact, a thawing of sorts may already have begun thanks to two telephone conversations Fox News Channel CEO Roger Ailes had with Obama…”

Jan. #’s: Program Ranker

Here’s the January 2007 program ranker. Fox News has 10 of the top 12 programs on cable news, with Bill O’Reilly at #1, H&C at #2, Shep at #3, Brit at #4, and Greta at #5.

CNN’s Larry King placed seventh, and Lou Dobbs is #12. CNN’s third-place show is 360 (but it’s #2 in the demo).

MSNBC’s top show is Countdown, followed by Investigates and Scarborough Country. Check it out:

> Jan. 2007 program ranker (PDF)

Jan. #’s: More Demo Viewers For MSNBC

“MSNBC continued its ratings surge in January, up more than any other cable network in primetime with a +78% increase over January 2006 in the adult 25-54 demographic (254,000 v. 143,000) and a +74% increase in total viewers (615,000 v. 353,000),” the network says.

Raw numbers: This month, Tucker had 10,000 more demo viewers than last January; Hardball added 60,000; Countdown added 133,000 (up 89 percent); Scarborough delivered 126,000 (up 80 percent) and the doc block added 91,000 at 10pm and 120,000 at 11pm…