Fox News Increases Audience with Breaking News and Exclusive Images

By Chris Ariens 

They were the fourth cable news network to report the news, but as Saturday afternoon wore on and the mystery of what caused a tour helicopter and small plane to collide deepened, Fox News went into continuing coverage of the breaking news off Hoboken, NJ. To show for it, the network increased their viewership 17% from the prior Saturday, while CNN lost Total Viewers week-to-week, but grew in the A25-54 demo.

FNC’s coverage got a boost when tourists visiting from Canada dropped by Fox News’ Sixth Avenue headquarters, armed with the first images of the impact of the crash. Local and national newspapers picked up those images, as did the network evening newscasts and foreign broadcasters including the BBC and Nippon TV.

TVNewser has learned Fox News paid an undisclosed amount to license the photos, then required other broadcasters and print publications to give the network credit — a common practice when networks enter into agreements with rights holders.

From 1-8pmET, Fox News averaged 1.01M Total Viewers to CNN’s 576K and MSNBC’s 380K (MSNBC remained in taped documentary programs with updates on the crash.) In the A25-54 demo, FNC drew 243K to CNN’s 165K and MSNBC’s 188K.

Saturday, 8/8/09 — 1-8pmET (Total Viewers/A25-54 Viewers)

FNC 1,010,000 / 243,000
CNN 576,000 / 165,000
MSNBC 380,000 / 188,000

Saturday, 8/1/09 — 1-8pmET (Total Viewers/A25-54 Viewers)

FNC 858,000 / 191,000
CNN 604,000 / 148,000
MSNBC 379,000 / 169,000

July ’09 — 1-8pmET (Total Viewers/A25-54 Viewers)

FNC 898,000 / 207,000
CNN 611,000 / 156,000
MSNBC 389,000 / 170,000