Our Failed Political Press ™

News at 11.

Axios’ morning email thingie:

Engagement with news plunged during the first half of this year compared to the first half of 2021 — and in some cases has fallen below pre-pandemic levels, Axios’ Neal Rothschild and Sara Fischer write.

Tell us why, Axios!

  • Why it matters: Americans have grown exhausted from the constant barrage of bad headlines that have replaced Trump-era crises, scandals and tweets.

Or could it be that we have been Both Sides’ed to death?

The big picture: The level of news consumption in 2021 nosedived following historic highs in 2020. Despite a slew of major stories, readers have retrenched further in 2022.

  • The war in Ukraine, a series of deadly mass shootings, the Jan. 6 hearings and the Supreme Court’s revocation of abortion rights haven’t captured the same level of attention spurred by the onset of the pandemic and the 2020 election.

So our Failed Political Press ™  started manufacturing breathlessly bad reporting to regain their glory days (see Joe Biden’s Inflation).

There is a significant detail in this “analysis (and breaking the rules, the emphasis in the next block is mine)

Details: Engagement with news content across all platforms declined significantly in the first half of 2022.

  • Prime-time cable-news viewership was down 19% for the first half of this year compared to the first half of 2021. CNN and MSNBC were down 47% and 33%, respectively. Fox News was up 12%.

…which shows us that if the public wants to be lied to, they are going with the professional Liars at Fox NotNews.

All the usual disclaimer apply: cable has a very small viewership, the big networks are moving to streaming, and linear/broadcast is still king but also heading towards streaming, so we are in a weird place with media fragmentation and delivery channels. I’m not sure that the ratings model will be apples-to-apples in the future.

Obviously none of this is good, as a well-informed public is essential to running a democracy, but instead of returning to accurate reporting, our Failed Political Press ™ sees Fox NotNews as the model to follow. Expect propaganda.

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6 Responses to Our Failed Political Press ™

  1. Dave says:

    Could It just be the quality of the news reporting? there is lots of news sites that I won’t read because the writing is so poor.

    Liked by 4 people

    • tengrain says:

      Dave –

      That’s true enough.

      I think also a lot of what we get —especially on cable— is not news, it’s opinion. Everything is bad on cable. It just is.



      Liked by 2 people

  2. Jimmy T says:

    I gave up Faux Snooze and cable news in general shortly after the Twin Towers fell to Earth (how many times I saw it happen was painful). And yes, I feel so relieved. Now I read a lot more news, but I’ve also watched all the hearings because I believe in democracy. And I visit a lot of websites that offer news and other info. Seems like a balanced approach…

    Liked by 2 people

  3. roket says:

    Quick question. Of that 12% uptick of FAUX, how many of those are in business lobbies?

    Liked by 3 people

  4. glitterbug says:

    I haven’t regularly watched TV news in at least a decade. I shut off the Sunday gabfests too.


  5. glitterbug says:

    I did turn on the locals for the 4th of July shooting in Philly.


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