Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tua Culpa Tues.: No (CBS) news is good news

By Joe Uchill
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Bad news for Katie Couric last week, when her CBS Evening News set a record for the lowest weekly ratings by a network newscast recorded under the current system of ratings. It sounds a lot worst than it is – largely because this week, she has set that record once again.

Couric's new lows, released today, show that only 5.34 million viewers tuned in last week. To put that in perspective, that means that first-place NBC’s newscast is viewed by 50% more viewers - 8.01 million in total.  At the rate of 5.34 million a week, it would have taken CBS until Wednesday to reach the same amount of viewers as a typical rerun of Spongebob. Couric is pulling in lower ratings than the interim newsanchor she replaced.  Since last week she has lost 50,000 viewers.

Still, last week, before the bleeding had gotten too bad, CBS had acknowledged who was at fault. The viewers.

"Obviously we're frustrated by the ratings. We don't believe that the broadcast or Katie are getting the credit they deserve," CBS News senior vp Paul Friedman said. "It's a first-rate broadcast. Most people who watch it carefully inside and outside the broadcast will tell you that. She's doing a great job." -[WP]

So which viewers are they hemorrhaging? The ones who would "tell you that” “it’s a first rate broadcast.” or ones who, having seen the show, are still not giving the “broadcast or Katie...credit they deserve?”  


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