Keith Olbermann’s last show on MSNBC was on Friday, January 21. Who would have guessed that he was the glue that held that network together? Without him, its ratings have fallen off a cliff.
Look at this comparison of ratings and audience size on Thursday, February 10 vs. Thursday, January 21, the day before Keith Olbermann’s sudden departure from MSNBC.
It shows that Fox has picked up huge numbers of viewers and CNN has picked up considerably fewer viewers, but MSNBC has absolutely imploded. Wow. It must be vodka and prescription drug time around 30 Rock.
|Network||Show||Jan 21||Feb 10||(+/-)|
Let’s analyze these numbers by hour rather than by host, because, quite honestly, we tried breaking it down that way but the shuffling of hosts made it almost impossible for us to comprehend our own analysis.
Keith Olbermann's word of the day is "scheudenfreude"
MSNBC 5:00 – This was the one bright spot for MSNBC. Matthews actually increased his audience from 612,000 on January 20 to 844,000 on February 10 for a gain of 232,000. It’s such a bizarre anomaly in the overall MSNBC disaster that we don’t quite know what to make of it. So let’s just say congratulations, Chris. It appears that you are now MSNBC’s biggest star. Of course, that concept must be driving MSNBC programming executives onto the ledges atop 30 Rock.
MSNBC 6:00 – When they call Cenk Uygur a temporary fill-in host, the emphasis is on temporary. He took Ed Schultz’ 760,000 viewers and turned them into 592,000 viewers. Losing 168,000 viewers is no way to get yourself a full-time gig, Cenkie.
MSNBC 7:00 – Many years ago the Editor had to attend a big quarterly board meeting in New York City. His office had miserable numbers and he dreaded having to report them to the New York bigwigs. He was seated to the immediate left of the Chairman of the Board. When it came time for each office to report it’s quarterly numbers, the Chairman started on his right and went around the table. One after another, each office manager reported worse results than the previous one had. By the time it got to the Editor, he was able to say, “Well, we aren’t making what we’d hoped for, but we’re still turning a slight profit” and the room erupted in applause simply because the numbers sucked less than everyone else’s. That’s the position Chris Matthews finds himself in. The bad news? He lost 23,000 viewers. The good news? Everyone else at MSNBC lost a lot more.
Ed Schultz is red-faced and angry about the ratings. Oh, wait. That's just his normal appearance and has absolutely nothing to do with the ratings.
MSNBC 8:00 – Keith Olbermann’s numbers were nothing to brag about, but O’Donnell makes him look like a ratings god. The time slot has gone from 1,106,000 viewers with Olbermann at the helm to a meager 843,000 with O’Donnell. Career enhancement opportunities do not follow losing 267,000 viewers in 30 days.
MSNBC 9:00 – So much for those tall tales of Rachel Maddow’s star power. Without Olbermann as her lead-in she lost 211,000 viewers.
MSNBC 10:00 – Poor Ed Schultz was convinced that the only thing keeping him from success even bigger than his head was a better time slot. So in the wake of Olbermann’s departure, MSNBC moved him from his 5:00 fringe-of-prime time slot to the much-coveted 10 pm slot. The audience responded by pretending Ed was a sinking ship and they were rats. Not only did Ed attract 185,000 fewer viewers at 10 pm than he did at 5 pm, but he also managed to lose 280,000 of the viewers that Lawrence O’Donnell had attracted when he filled the 10 pm slot. Nice work, Ed. We would have said that was impossible, but you proved us wrong.
Source: MediaBistro, MediaBistro