Midterms: Cable Newsers Likely To “Narrow The Gap” With Broadcast Nets

By Brian 

Multichannel News: “If the results of the last two national cycles can serve as indicators, cable news networks figure to narrow the gap against the broadcast channels with their election-night-2006 coverage.”

In 2002: “Fox News Channel (2.74 million), CNN (2.46 million) and MSNBC (940,000) combined to average 6 million viewers in primetime, according to Nielsen Media Research data. That compared with a collective 34 million for ABC (9.7 million), NBC (11.4 million) and CBS (12.9 million). As such, cable grabbed about 15% of the viewers in primetime on election-night 2002 (Nov. 5).”

In 2004: “Fox News (8.05 million), CNN (6.20) and MSNBC (2.83) amassed more than 17.08 million viewers versus 39.5 million for the Big Three — ABC (13.7 million), CBS (10.1 million) and NBC (15.7 million), according to Nielsen data. By those measurements, cable upped its share of viewing on election-night 2004 (Nov. 2) to 30%.”