Posted in: Media Industry

CNN Ratings Drop to Lowest Numbers in More Than 10 Years

CNN ratings april 2012

CNN ratings have hit the lowest numbers they’ve achieved since August 2001, a month prior to the attacks of September 11th that reshaped the modern news cycle in many fundamental ways.

In April of 2012, CNN ratings plummeted a total 21% over April of 2011, and in the 25-54 year old demographic, the decline was even more marked, with a 29% drop. According to Deadline.com, competitors Fox News and MSNBC did not see the same decline as seen in CNN ratings. MSNBC, often seen as the direct foil to Fox’s right-leaning coverage came in flat in total viewership and down a more modest 5% in the key 25-54 year old demographic.

Fox, on the other hand, saw some slight gains on both fronts. Among all viewers, the network was up 2%, and in the 25-54 group, there was a very slight 1% bump. The trade paper also notes declines in viewership for all CNN’s main evening properties, with a 41% drop for evening headliner John King.

Erin Burnett’s Outfront was down 34%, while Piers Morgan’s show fell 14% in ratings. Anderson Cooper 360 showed the lowest decline among the network’s properties at 8%.

Anderson Cooper and Amy Winehouse

Former CNN Washington bureau chief David Bohrman spoke to the Wall Street Journal about CNN’s ratings in April, saying that the network is still America’s first choice during a crisis, but in the absence of a developing story of that magnitude, the channel has struggled to retain an identity:

“The world still knows to turn to CNN whenever a crisis erupts… That is the brand. But CNN seems uncomfortable with the totality of the brand. They are constantly trying to figure out who they are when there is no crisis.”

The Journal notes that CNN’s ratings did show a “rare… win over MSNBC in the 25-54 demographic in prime time in the first quarter,” mainly due to some notable events such as the death of Whitney Houston, as well as election-related coverage.

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Comments

118 Responses to “CNN Ratings Drop to Lowest Numbers in More Than 10 Years”

  1. Guadalupe Wong

    Maybe if CNN would report on actual news instead of selling sex appeal of its anchors, they'll regain credibility?

  2. Rick Kraich

    People are tired of their Obama loving B.S.

  3. Anonymous

    I used to watch CNN all the time because they stuck to hard news, no gimmicks, and had reputable anchors and reporters. Unfortunately in recent years CNN has pandered to the lowest common denominator. The few good anchors and reporters, including Wolf and Anderson, often seem embarrassed by the gimmicks. There are far too many "pundits" on their panels, and they don't seem to be "getting it" in terms of using good journalists. Erin is not ready for anchoring anything, she was foolish not to stay at CNBC. Other anchors including Don Lemmon are not that good and too emotional and patronizing. Go back to what made you successful in the first place…quality reporters and anchors and reporting.

  4. Joey Puleo

    People like opinions. Unfortunately, CNN tries to be as moderate and unbias as possible and provides very little opinion for people to love or hate.

  5. Ramon Garcia

    I saw a freeking report on the CNS of cows that have mad cow disease! REALLY millions world wide with CNS diseases and they cover a cow I WILL NOT watch them! Made it known on Twitter and facebook on their choice to research that instead of real issues…. as a guy with MS I took very serious!

  6. Jesse Sutterlin

    I think the major problem is that Times Warner only includes CNN in it's premium channel packages as opposed to Fox News which is available in its lowest pricing option for cable(around $20 a month). We use to watch CNN constantly but recently cut the cord from cable completely and got a Roku box. Had CNN been available in the basic package we would have gone with that. Also CNN's presence on Roku is very minimal with only audio streams as opposed to Fox News's video and live feeds(I believe). I'd rather watch local news than Fox News's "out of their minds garbage." The point being, viewers are watching TV and News differently and CNN should be paying attention to that and looking to Roku and other outlets for viewership.

  7. Leonardo Chang

    Crappy News Network (CNN) is in the tank for Nobama… They're just bunch of Dem. party political hacks… American viewers knows it! Thus, the low ratings!

  8. Leonardo Chang

    Moderate? are you kidding??? I am the King of USSA then…

  9. Erick Blair

    That's nuts. CNN is hard left, but they want to peddle this nonsense with a smile. And that's impossible. Better to be like MSNBC. Peddle it with a sneer and a fair does of hate.

  10. Clifford Coppen

    Stop trying to make news. Wolf takes a 5 minute interest piece and drags it out for hours. He just loves the sound of his own voice, and so does CNN for airing him so long. Cooper is a joke he, s not even relevent in his keeping them honest rants. I switch him off and look at FOX during that time slot.Anderson was pathetic during his sorry attempts to broadcast news in Egypt and Japan then he lands a prime news slot.

  11. Michael Sloan

    cnn is boring with nancy grace yelling at her guest and showbiz tonight its not my cup of tea, so some shows on fox I do like and I will continue watching.

  12. Leonardo Chang

    The major problem is the political hack Nobama operatives that claims to be fair journalist!!! American can see right through it…thus the low ratings!!! CNN is now know as the Crappy News Network!!! haha… Keep it up and they have the same viewership as BSLSD (MSNBC)

  13. Daniel Simard

    though I like Anderson Cooper, he can no longer be taken seriously as a reporter, since he went to day time talk show mode, he's now irelevant.CNN needs to get back to what made them, news , nothing but news24/7.

  14. Jean Eborg

    this story I just can not fathom…..I love CNN..its one of the best…and it is the only one with true facts.

  15. Alan Parks

    Wow. This is news? I'll bet that if pollsters and demographic profilers went away from a few select urban centers and out into the hinterlands of America, they'd find that almost no one watches CNN anymore, and that even fewer watch MSNBC. Lousy hosts, nearly-uncharismatic, old tired-looking graphics, etc. And, they totally lost their credibility years ago on anything except major emergencies. And even then, Fox has about caught up. Like FNN or hate them, they've developed a business model that's light-years better and more current.

  16. Joey Puleo

    Hard left? I mean I wouldnt consider them perfectly moderate, but they are nowhere close to MSNBC or FOX. Just because they don't have any fools ranting like Bill O' Reily, doesnt mean they arent moderate.

  17. Joey Puleo

    Leonardo Chang CNN is as close to moderate you can get out of the three choices…FOX has republicans yelling about hating democrats and MSNBC has democrats yelling about how they hate republicans… you must be a hardcore republican

  18. Craig Barnhart

    All they do is lie all day, why would anyone watch any of the pre-approved news.

  19. David Hall

    Thanks! I think I will. (I tend to like some truth when I watch the news)

  20. David Hall

    Thanks! I think I will. (I tend to like some truth when I watch the news)

  21. David Hall

    Thanks! I think I will. (I tend to like some truth when I watch the news)

  22. Anonymous

    maybe it's because people are finally getting tired of being LIED TO!

  23. Anonymous

    It's time for CNN to consult with some veteran anchors and revamp the quality of the news content that's been rendered. People like Barbara Walters and Dan Rather etc. The stories chosen are poor selections to captivate viewer interest. It's time for some drastic change with the quality of stories presented, not personnel. I'm still looking for TJ.

  24. Anonymous

    It's time for CNN to consult with some veteran anchors and revamp the quality of the news content that's been rendered. People like Barbara Walters and Dan Rather etc. The stories chosen are poor selections to captivate viewer interest. It's time for some drastic change with the quality of stories presented, not personnel. I'm still looking for TJ.

  25. Ursa Worlds

    I like CNN…if you want news that is where you go. Why do they care about ratings? It should be nothing but the news. Period. That's what's wrong with the U.S. everyone cares about ratings. We need JUST a news program.

  26. Ursa Worlds

    I like CNN…if you want news that is where you go. Why do they care about ratings? It should be nothing but the news. Period. That's what's wrong with the U.S. everyone cares about ratings. We need JUST a news program.

  27. John Morris

    Both F & F in the AM and O'Brien are each others' antithesis. Both suck. Steve Ducey and Soledad think their opinions are truthful simply because they uttered them.

  28. John Morris

    Both F & F in the AM and O'Brien are each others' antithesis. Both suck. Steve Ducey and Soledad think their opinions are truthful simply because they uttered them.

  29. Tom Gallo Sr.

    Piers Morgan is down in my opinon because he leads guests with questions he wants answered his way. It is usually very liberal.Has that English mentality.

  30. Brandon Miller

    This is exactly it. People want to hear news members reinforce their own beliefs. CNN leans left slightly, that is obvious. But as you said, they are as close as it gets to a moderate new source.

  31. Anonymous

    Erin Burnett’s Outfront who watches her. She tries so hard to be hard still conveys no message. Quite frankly, I had tried at several occasions to watch her programm, but there is something that ain't right about the way she presents her story> I wish I could figure it out. And Anderson Copper, you know what, if he can focus less on Syria and talk more about the present and immediate danger facing the US, he might survive it.
    Eucharia Mbachu

  32. Sean Watson

    CNN is very moderate and your right that most people that watch the new regularly are on one fringe or the other. The fact some drink Bill O' Reily 'cool-aid' and lean so far right the middle of the road seems Left is not a real indentation of reality. Fox news just got the best piece of the pie, as the Far Right are more likely to watch TV news so they of course carter to this heavily. But in general most Americans do not watch the news daily and are centrists

  33. John Freeman

    they just don't get it, follow msnbc and your doomed, these two could politicise a bag of dirt , people ar sick of it.

  34. Anonymous

    Rick, Shut the heck up. Their doing there job.

  35. Ronald D. Cook

    Fox and CNN both have political agenda based news. Its all crap. I don't think these news stations get it. No one believes you anymore. People want real news and don't want to hear what they think we should hear. Me personally I watch RT news. RT is not glamourous as the other stations but at least I hear the hard honest news that I need to know instead of the other stations spinning the news constantly.

  36. Anonymous

    Oh and I forgot. Too all those people who don't like MSNBC or CNN. I say go back to watching Fox News. Get Brain Washed by them. Because, Fox News is in fact Controlled by Republicans. MSNBC is kinda of Controlled by Democrates.

    But CNN. The reason why there rates are so low. Is because of there inaccorate reporting, looking to offend people.
    I remember in the past. I use to watch CNN and still watch. Always compare it to MSNBC. When MSNBC was inaccorate. CNN was there to fill the holes. It really gave me a peace of mind. Now it's more Like FOX NEWS OF THE PAST.

    I say guys, Contact CNN. Tell them to go back the past. Look at there past reporting and breaking news stories. Then look at what there doing now.
    From calling Facebook, twitter, myspace and youtube.com the wrong term. Go and Look at the Internet Law.
    And try to get back it's luster.

  37. Jimmy Anderson

    lol, well, how long did they expect anti american bias to sell?

  38. Mike Martin

    CNN provides generally solid news, but lack the empty rhetoric and bluster of FoxNews. If Fox was a person in cardiac arrest, and a Democrat trained in CPR was on site to assist them, they would choose death before ideaological dishonor. I think Erin Burnett is a welcome addition at the network with significant political savvy and stage presence, and is far prettier than Van Sustern. Keep on trying, eventually Fox will devour itself.

  39. Roy Wright

    Really? Isn't Fox News ahead in ratings? All of their female news anchors look like they spend their nights at Hugh Hefner's house.

  40. Sean Lesley Dorsey

    look who they have………….anderson pretty boy cooper…that very irrating fake voice solidad obrien…tony rolling his eyes harris.i am surprised wolf blitzer is still on there.he is the best one.candy crowly is good also.they also have that america hating indian farig GPS whatever his name is.and ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh lest I forget, drumroll please….PIERCE I LOVE GOSSIP MORGAN!

  41. New Ole

    CNN is a failure—Communist Donkey Party Networks seem to be falling in dis- favor as TRUTH of their True BS progressive failures which have already ruined Europe and California and Illinois and New Jersey ( until Corzine was booted out-thank god for GOP Christie) and New York and the unions—nuff said!

  42. Billy Chaser

    Jean Eborg comparing fox with cnn is pointless. Its like saying the shit I took last night was better than the one I took before.

  43. New Ole

    Roy Wright -All of them —even the local weather casters have gone that route-Fox is not alone in that aspect—they are alone in exposing Marxism and Progressive Donkey Party hand out games for the 51% non tax paying public though!

  44. New Ole

    Jeff Kunzman University elite progressive taught Greece, California , Illinois how to go bankrupt and how to get country's economies in the crapper—good job University Sniper!

  45. New Ole

    You believe progressive views that bankrupted Europe, California and Illinois are "fact"—wow-you are a teacher, a govt worker or a union member or just a routine donkey party bigot. nuff said!

  46. New Ole

    You believe progressive views that bankrupted Europe, California and Illinois are "fact"—wow-you are a teacher, a govt worker or a union member or just a routine donkey party bigot. nuff said!

  47. John Jr Cline

    CNN is out of touch, with 75% of America! That's why they're getting their A$$ handed to them in the ratings , by Fox News! Are you listening Ted Turner?

  48. Steve Weeks

    Well I never watch their crap but I'm not sure I ready to shut them down. This is a free country. They'll eventually execute themselves.

  49. Steve Weeks

    Bless your heart Jean. Did you not just read the article? Further liberal media ratings have been declining for years. Hate to say it mam but you're a dying breed.

  50. Justin Lewis

    Stick to international news stations. Whether you agree with their points or not, at least you'll get legitimate news!

  51. Michael Rananyas

    Woop. Let's all listen to one of the other 5 corporations that owns around 90% of the media in this country.
    Shall we go with the media outlet that divides on the left? Or the media outlet that divides us on the right…

    Decisions Decisions. Go back to bed America. The Machine is in control of your opinions.

  52. Gary Thibodeaux

    American People mistrust their media and government LIES!, hell foreign countries report the news about America in a more acurate and.honest light about what's really going on in America and some wish RON PAUL were their candidate, so beware the bought out bias american media and government LIES!

  53. Anonymous

    its not cuz of obama…cnn have more people talking negative about obama than people think. that's why I stopped watching. they don't call republicans out for lying about Obama. msnbc gives you the FACTSD..they show you video and documentation to back their facts up.

    cnn's reporting is HORRIBLE. heard they fired most of their reporters and hired bloggers. MSNBC is the only news channel left…fox news is GARBAGE and should be taken off the air. its making america retarded.

  54. Ashton Vital Silva

    All of them suck. BBC is by far the best news station.

  55. Alan Mercieca

    Fox news is the worst. They love to lie They are certainly in bed with the GOP. I do not trust Obama and I want him long gone yet they are way too much pro GOP for my liking Clearly that is the only side that they are on. CNN do not take them seriously since I caught them fibbing way too many times and lost all faith in them.

  56. Bob Moore

    If anything CNN leans to the right. Recently they remind of Fox News. Fox by the way isn't news it's sensationalism. They are a political organization not a news outlet.

  57. Delilah H Scott

    I don't get cable and never will. I hate paying for commercials and then paying the networks to air them.

  58. Darryl Baker Jr.

    People who says CNN is bias and BS are just Obama haters. Of course they are going to flock to the channel (FoxNews) that supports and have the same view as them. Duhhhh. Then when a channel tell them something that don't want to hear (even if it's the truth) it's "liberal media". If they show Obama in a positive light, it's bias and liberal. Get out of her with that BS. News fact… Obama is not the devil and he is making progress to better us, but you wouldn't know that if stayed tuned to FoxNews.

    FoxNews Lovers, watch that channel for a week and count how many positive comments are made about the President. I better the number would be zero. Not because he's not doing anything, just because it's their job to get him out of office.

  59. Joey Puleo

    have you watched FOX or MSNBC? I think theyre the definition of bias…

  60. Michael Cordima

    Jean Eborg, people like you don't know why Fox is getting more popular because you refuse to watch it. O'Reilly has come a long way and gets more balanced all the time. That's why more are watching. The other groups almost started a race war with the Trevon thing they were so biased.

  61. Brenda Carrington

    Viewers have left because they are frustrated that they can not get the truth from you. Stop the media blackout of the Ron Paul movement. He is winning delegates and is going to win the GOP nomination but CNN is not showing this. I have never seen so much popularity around a primary candidate ever. Cover him and you will get return viewers.

  62. Anonymous

    CNN = Communist News Network We're fed up with the lies and "edited" news. Show us the truth and we'll watch you. You can start with the GOP primary. Mitt does not have this won. Ron Paul in fact iws on his way to a brokered convention and has won six states.

  63. Anonymous

    I really enjoy CNN – specifically Wolf Blitzer and Suzanne Malveau. I switched from Fox long ago to get away from all the bias. I see CNN as a professional news outlet where Fox has a bunch of pretty girls and boys working as journalists. I also like Gloria Borger, Jack Cafferty and Candy Crowell.

  64. Anonymous

    Ratings are down in the US CNN International is a catastrophe.A potpourri of presenter ugly looking, same segments repeated over and over and boooooring.. shut it down! Uselessssssss

  65. Steve Weeks

    Joey Puleo Well I've watched a lot of both. If you're calling Sean Hannity or Bill O'Reilly "news" then you really don't know what the news part of Fox does. I trust their news more than anyone's. Chris Wallace and Brett Baier are as aggressive and fair as there is. As far as Fox telling lies. I'm sure they have some of the same type slanting that CNN does but I find the personalities at CNN a bit more apt to twist the truth. Hannity is just not all that bright is the only excuse I can make for him. O'Reilly is right behind, but I'd put up Neil Cavuto or Greta against ANYONE CNN has as far as being fair with both sides.

  66. Suzanne Meriden

    Jesse! I think you make the most sense. Unfortunately sometimes we read an article and don't stop to thing of why that might be, and then we just run off our mouths to start a fight! Fox news is snesationalism therefore it will be sold in more packages, and being that we are a country who likes drama, we tend to think it is the 'right' thing to watch. i don't think CNN is perfect, and I do think they need get a bit more serious and less 'ridiculoust' type of news source, but I would take them over Fox anytime!

  67. Roger Bellas

    Keep up the good work CNN. Don't EVER give up your ultra liberal point of view. I have you blocked out on my channel selector.

  68. Mark Mccardell

    I can see the huge drop especially with John King…………..for some reason I cant stand the guy, alot of people must agree with me.

  69. James Seth Wade

    Mario Mintchev, It different for every regional area and service provider, Comrade Dumb4ss!

  70. Anonymous

    cnn sacks big time.They put their stupid noses where it doesn't belong. Yes I am GREEK AND PROUD. Leave my country aloooooooooooooone.Stp critisizing with your ingorent comments.Stoooooooooooop.

  71. Alex Chaffetz

    Most Americans have an IQ of at least 100. That's why they don't watch CNN. The remnant with an IQ below 100 watch CNN.

    After Larry King fell by the wayside, I knew that channel was on its last legs.

    You have to be a total dumbass, or gullible and naiive, not to see their Marxist, anti-Christian, anti-American, anti- patriot, anti-business, anti-family, anti-nationalist, anti-God, , pro-United Nations, pro- evil, pro- George Soros agenda.

    That's why there are people with Youtube channels that get higher ratings than their very best, Anderson Cooper.

    He's doing talk shows the last time I saw him on TV. Probably knows CNN will get fazed out soon.

  72. Steve Weeks

    Joey their talk show hosts ARE and they make no bones that they're conservatives but the news division people are the best. Brett Baier and Chris Wallace are two of the best in the business and show no bias whatsoever. Have you ever seen a CNN person admit they're a liberal? Not many politicians will even admit to that crime. LOL