CNN Slides To #13 In Cable Rankings

CNN president Jeff Zucker (REUTERS)

Chuck Ross Investigative Reporter
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CNN has fallen to #13 in cable TV rankings, according to weekly numbers posted on Thursday by TV Newser.

The ratings slide comes as the network has come under heavy scrutiny for a variety of journalistic missteps, including the retraction of an article alleging that a Trump associate had illicit Russian business ties.

Fox News and MSNBC are listed as first and second, respectively, in the cable rankings, which measured average audience sizes for the period between June 26 and July 2. Fox News drew an audience of around 1.82 million while MSNBC drew an audience of 1.34 million. CNN had only 711,000 viewers on an average day during the measurement period.

Fox News has maintained the top spot over the past five TV Newser rankings analyzed by The Daily Caller. MSNBC has bounced between the second and third position while CNN has steadily fallen from sixth to thirteenth over the past month.

The network has slipped in another important category.

For the week ended June 4, CNN was viewed by 1.0 percent of all households, on average. Fox News was watched by 2.0 percent while 1.3 percent of households watched MSNBC. But for the most recent week, CNN was watched by just 0.8 percent of households. Fox News and MSNBC were viewed by 2.1 percent and 1.5 percent of households, respectively.

While it is impossible to determine from the rankings what caused CNN’s relative decline, last week was a tough one for the network. Early in the week, the network forced three of its reporters to resign over the retracted article, which alleged that Trump associate Anthony Scaramucci was under investigation by the Senate Intelligence Committee for Russian business ties.

CNN was also hit last week with the release of several undercover videos published by conservative muckraker James O’Keefe. The video series showed a CNN health unit producer dismissing the network’s coverage of the investigation into President Trump’s possible ties to Russia as “bullshit.”

O’Keefe also released a video last week showing CNN contributor Van Jones calling the Russia story a “nothingburger.”

The most recent cable rankings do not reflect the latest controversy to hit CNN. The network came under fire on Tuesday after it published an article which appeared to threaten to publicly identify an anonymous social media user who took credit for making a spoof video showing Trump beating up another man with a CNN logo superimposed over his face.

Trump tweeted the video on Friday. By Tuesday, the network had tracked down the maker of the video for an interview. In an article about the man, CNN stated that it was not publicly identifying the man behind the video but that the network reserved the right to do so at a later date. Many observers took CNN to task for what appeared to be a threat against the man.

Trump, his son Donald Trump Jr., numerous White House officials and supporters of the Republican have hammered CNN over the series of errors.

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