From 10-11 p.m. Eastern time, when ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, BET and TV One all carried live coverage of the convention, a combined total of nearly 22.3 million viewers tuned in, according to data from Nielsen Media Research.There was some question on last night's open thread as to why I was giving CNN's coverage additional play when many (myself included) feel overall the network has become a much more biased news outlet. Here's why:
An average of about 18 million watched six of those eight networks on July 26, 2004.
BET and TV One, which primarily target African-Americans, were not included in the 2004 data.
There were significant gains for a number of cable networks, which had coverage throughout the evening. Among viewers 25-54 -- the news audience most coveted by advertisers -- CNN's audience jumped more than 125% to an average of about 1.37 million viewers, outpacing all cable news outlets. MSNBC's ratings in the demographic climbed 122% to an average of 847,000 viewers, while Fox News' ratings rose 42% to an average of 776,000.With live news events, CNN usually leads the coverage. This was no exception. There were almost as many people watching CNN as MSNBC and Fox combined. I commented last night that it was unfortunate that Kennedy's speech didn't make the 10 PM hour. This is why:
Among the broadcast networks, NBC garnered the most viewers, with more than 4.7 million, representing a 4% gain over 2004.When the networks preempt regular programming, audience grows dramatically. Last night, NBC in one hour had more viewers than all the cable networks combined. I will note that these numbers are for commercial television, and therefore won't include C-SPAN or visitors to the Democratic Convention website.