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Roger Ailes’ Birthday Memo to the FNC Staff

Ailes_10.7.jpgTwelve years ago today Fox News Channel went on the air. [Hard to imagine a cable news network debuting a month before a presidential election, but Clinton v. Dole certainly isn't McCain v. Obama.] Anyway, on the occasion of their anniversary, FNC founder and chairman Roger Ailes sent a note to the staff, which TVNewser has obtained.

“Our journalism has forced other news organizations to reexamine how they present the news,” Ailes writes, continuing, “You have made the brilliant vision of Rupert Murdoch a reality as we have proved that the American public wants, and needs, news presented in a fair and balanced manner.”

And in congratulating the staff, Ailes also reminds them of the “substantial challenges” they face.

Click continued to read it…


Twelve years ago today, history was made as we launched the FOX News Channel and the media landscape was changed forever. Facing an entrenched 16 year old network, another backed by the vast resources of Microsoft and General Electric, and a skeptical media openly rooting for us to fail, FNC launched against exceedingly long odds.

But here we are, twelve years later, not only having defied the naysayers, but our journalism has forced other news organizations to reexamine how they present the news. You have made the brilliant vision of Rupert Murdoch a reality as we have proved that the American public wants, and needs, news presented in a fair and balanced manner.

Here’s what we have accomplished in twelve years:
* FNC has been #1 in total day and prime total audience since January 2002, 81 consecutive months
* FNC has been #1 in total day 25-54 demo since December of 2001, 82 consecutive months
* In Sep ’08, FNC had its 2nd highest rated month EVER in Prime (highest ever in April 2003)
* FNC had 3% of the Total Day cable news market share in 1997…today our share is 39%

So take a moment today to reflect on and enjoy your accomplishments, but keep in mind that we still face substantial challenges from other news organizations. We must continue to outwork, outthink and outperform the competition everyday.

I met with Mr. Murdoch this morning and he asked that I pass along his personal thanks for all of your efforts. He has great admiration for the success you have achieved.

I am proud of all of you and I hope you appreciate how fortunate we are to be working at FNC during this historic time. With your hard work and the continued, unwavering support of Mr. Murdoch, I’m confident that our best days are still ahead of us.

Congratulations.

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