United States cable news
Cable news refers to television channels devoted to television news broadcasts, with the name deriving from the proliferation of such networks during the 1980s with the advent of cable television. In the United States, early networks included CNN in 1980, Financial News Network in 1981, and CNN2 (now HLN) in 1982. CNBC was created in 1989, taking control of FNN in 1991. By 1997, the cable news industry grew to incorporate several other networks, including Fox News Channel, MSNBC, and specialty channels including Bloomberg Television, ESPNews, and Fox Business Network. A recent addition to the cable news business is Al Jazeera America.
As the highest rated and most widely available cable news channels, CNN, Fox News Channel and MSNBC are sometimes referred to as the "Big Three". Beginning with Fox News, some television networks shifted emphasis from simple news and news analysis to focus on opinion programming. While the networks are usually referred to as 24-hour news networks, reruns of news programs and opinion programming are played throughout the night, with the exception of breaking news.
Regional 24-hour cable news television channels that are primarily concerned with local programming and cover some statewide interest are News 14 Carolina that operates out of North Carolina, NY1 operates from New York City and Northwest Cable News (NWCN) operates from Seattle. New England Cable News covers the six state region of New England, while the primary core of Your News Now covers the numerous regions of Upstate New York.
- 1 "Big Three" news channels
- 2 Other cable news channels
- 3 Prime time line-ups
- 4 See also
- 5 References
"Big Three" news channels
The Persian Gulf War in 1991 catapulted CNN into the spotlight, largely because CNN was the only news outlet with the ability to communicate from inside Iraq during the initial hours of the American bombing campaign, with live reports from the al-Rashid Hotel in Baghdad by reporters Bernard Shaw, John Holliman, and Peter Arnett. Throughout the 1990s, CNN (which was at the time the only major cable news channel) became very influential, an influence later coined as the CNN effect.
During the 1990s, CNN was criticized by former Republican House Majority Leader Tom DeLay and among other conservatives of liberal bias and have referred to CNN as the "Clinton News Network." CNN is considered by some to have a liberal bias. and catering to a more liberal audience, However, MSNBC has in recent years shifted to become the strongest liberal outlet of the big three.
CNN was the first cable news network to launch in high definition (HD) in September 2007. Today, CNN's television personalities include Wolf Blitzer, Piers Morgan, Erin Burnett, Anderson Cooper and Jake Tapper.
In 1982, Time Warner created a spin-off called CNN2, showing the top stories of the day every 30 minutes. The channel rebranded as CNN Headline News in 1983. However, around the mid-2000s, the network abandoned the CNN branding and became the orphaned initialism HLN.
Time Warner created CNN International in 1985. CNN launched a special version on January 20, 1992 named CNN Airport Network which is available exclusively in United States airports, which simulcasts CNN and HLN, but with inserts of information of interest to air travelers. CNN also runs a Spanish version of its newcasts named CNN en Español.
Time Warner also established two, now defunct networks. CNNfn, launched at the end of 1995, attempted to challenge CNBC. It was shut down after nine years on the air in December 2004. CNNSI, a combination of CNN and Sports Illustrated, attempted to counter the rising success of ESPNews in covering sports news. While the network was shut down, CNN and Sports Illustrated continue to maintain their partnership, with Sports Illustrated operating a sports section on CNN's website.
Fox News Channel was founded by Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation, the third largest media company in the United States behind Time Warner and Disney. The network is headed by CEO Roger Ailes. The network first broadcast in HD in May, 2008.
Since the network's launch, FNC has held the title as the highest rated cable network. FNC's prime time lineup includes cable news' top rated program The O'Reilly Factor, hosted by Bill O'Reilly. While Fox News' slogan claims the network is "Fair and Balanced" and that "We Report. You Decide", the network is often criticized for holding a conservative bias.
When the network was launched in 1996, the leading hosts included Jodi Applegate, John Gibson, Tim Russert, and Brian Williams. For over a decade, the network's ratings were consistently last. Phil Griffin became president of MSNBC in mid-2008 and MSNBC has become increasingly politically liberal since then, particularly in its prime-time lineup. MSNBC launched an HD version on June 29, 2009.
Notable personalities on the network include Morning Joe cohosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, dayside anchors Chuck Todd and Andrea Mitchell and evening commentators Chris Matthews and Rachel Maddow. The network was noted in the mid-2000s for its harsh criticism of then President George W. Bush, most notably the 'special comment' segment of former anchor Keith Olbermann's show. This, combined with accusations of support for President Barack Obama, have led to MSNBC being criticized for a 'liberal bias' by conservatives, a reputation it has increasingly embraced with its "Lean Forward" slogan and open promotion of progressive and liberal ideas.
|This section requires expansion. (February 2009)|
Since March 2009, MSNBC held the second place in primetime. For the first time in 2012 MSNBC finished second in total day ratings for the year, beating the previously top rated CNN. Phil Griffin, President of MSNBC, attributed the success to the network's more 'progressive' commentary, with former anchor Keith Olbermann and current host Rachel Maddow taking advantage of on air changes at its competitor. MSNBC has also noted the consistent ratings growth enjoyed, especially while Fox News and CNN have seen declining viewerships. Since 2013, CNN has occasionally fallen below its sister network, HLN, and thus sometimes finishes in fourth place.
Other cable news channels
Al Jazeera America
Based on Al Jazeera English, the Al Jazeera Media Network created Al Jazeera America in August, 2013 with the channel space formerly occupied by Current TV. The channel provides both domestic and international news and features talent such as Tony Harris, John Seigenthaler, Richelle Carey, Joie Chen, Antonio Mora, Ali Velshi and Lisa Fletcher along with hosts from Al Jazeera English. While not as widely distributed as the big three the channel is currently available in about 40 million homes. The channel is fully managed and operated in the United States and its president is Kate O'Brian, the former vice president of ABC News.
The channel operates in High Definition but is shown (at least temporarily) in Standard Definition on most carriers due to the fact that the channel that was acquired, Current TV was only in Standard Definition. Only Google Fiber, Time Warner and Bright House Networks carry an HD feed at this time.
One America News Network
One America News Network was launched in summer 2013 with the cooperation of The Washington Times. The channel's content openly caters to a conservative/libertarian audience. As of fall 2013, it is the least widely distributed of the cable news outlets.
TheBlaze TV is the television arm of TheBlaze, a multimedia network founded and operated by radio host Glenn Beck. Beck, who previously hosted a daily hourlong television show on Headline News and Fox News Channel, formed TheBlaze TV (originally known as GBTV) on September 12, 2011, shortly after leaving Fox News. TheBlaze is available via Dish Network, various smaller cable providers, and through subscription Internet television.
In 1989, CNBC was launched by NBC Universal. It was followed by Bloomberg Television in 1994, created by Bloomberg L.P., which is led by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. In October 2007, Murdoch launched his own financial network called Fox Business Network saying CNBC is too "negative towards business" and promised to make Fox Business more "business friendly".
The Big Three:
|CNBC||Bloomberg TV||Fox Business Network|
|Headquarters||Englewood Cliffs, N.J.||New York City||New York City|
|Number of Households in 2012||97 million||57 million||68 million|
|Profits in 2008||$350 million||$15.6 million||not reported*|
|Management||Mark Hoffman (President)||Michael Clancy (Executive Editor)||Roger Ailes (CEO)|
- Fox Business Network is operated as a division of the Fox Entertainment Group – which had $1.85 billion in net income in 2004. No information reported for the profits or losses which the Fox Business Network division represents.
Fox Business ratings are generally too low to be registered beyond Nielsen's margin of error; its highest viewership was estimated to be 202,000 viewers, during the 7:00 hour of Imus in the Morning's debut broadcast on the network. Bloomberg also doesn't subscribe to Nielsen and ratings are assumed to be very small (however, its viewership was higher than CNBC's when Bloomberg simulcast on E! in the early morning hours, an arrangement that ended in the late 2000s). Currently, CNBC usually has between 200,000-400,000 viewers during the day. In 2000, CNBC had higher ratings then CNN during market hours. The viewership of business newscasts may be underestimated in part because much of its viewership comes from communal areas, most of which cannot be accurately measured by Nielsen and are thus not counted.
ESPN launched a 24 hour sports news channel named ESPNews on November 1, 1996, which is carried by most cable and satellite providers, although usually only on higher level tiers. It airs news, highlights, press conferences, and commentary by analysts all in relation to sports. ESPN was also syndicated to regional sports networks as daytime filler programming and also often appears as blackout filler on ESPN or ESPN2 when those channels air a program unavailable in a certain geographic area.
ESPNews cut back its news-only format in 2013, after several years of ESPN expanding its flagship newscast, SportsCenter, throughout the daytime hours on the main channel. ESPNews newscasts are now branded under the SportsCenter brand, while replays of ESPN2 talk programs typically air when SportsCenter is on ESPN's main channel.
The Weather Channel is the market leader in news regarding weather forecasting. It launched in 1982. Originally, the channel was devoted entirely to weather forecasts and news coverage (with computer-generated local forecasts inserted through each individual cable provider every ten minutes), but since 2001, the network has increasingly cut back its weather coverage in favor of reality television shows. Most of the channel's morning lineup, and some of the afternoon, remains devoted to news coverage of the weather. As of 2013, it is operated under the same corporate structure as MSNBC.
Since the 2000s, there have been several other attempts to launch weather-centric TV channels. The Local AccuWeather Channel is distributed mainly as a digital subchannel on various terrestrial television outlets. WeatherNation TV, originally known as The Weather Cast, also uses this model, although it also provides a feed directly to cable providers. Before NBC acquired The Weather Channel, it operated NBC Weather Plus. None of these stations are available on either of the two major satellite providers in the United States, Dish Network or DirecTV; The Weather Cast was carried on Dish, but only for four days as the result of a carriage dispute between Dish and The Weather Channel.
Prime time line-ups
|Network||7 PM||8 PM||9 PM||10 PM|
|CNN||Erin Burnett OutFront||Anderson Cooper 360°||Piers Morgan Tonight||AC After Dark|
|Fox News Channel||On the Record with Greta Van Susteren||The O'Reilly Factor||The Kelly File||Hannity|
|MSNBC||Hardball with Chris Matthews||All In with Chris Hayes||The Rachel Maddow Show||The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell|
|HLN||Issues with Jane Velez-Mitchell||Nancy Grace||Nancy Grace Mysteries||Dr. Drew|
|Al Jazeera America||Real Money with Ali Velshi / The Stream||Nightly News||America Tonight||Consider This|
|Bloomberg Television||Charlie Rose||various programs||Charlie Rose (repeat)|
|CNBC||The Kudlow Report||CNBC Specials|
|Fox Business Network||Lou Dobbs Tonight||Cavuto||The Willis Report||Lou Dobbs Tonight|
- Media Research Center Press Release February 21, 2003
- Jeffrey N. Weatherly, et al, “Perceptions of Political Bias in the Headlines of Two Major News Organizations,” The Harvard International Journal of Press/Politics (2007) (12), 91 at p. 97
- 2007 State of the News Media
- "PEJ Press Release (PEJ)". Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism. 2007-03-12. Retrieved 2009-02-27.
- TV Week September 6, 2007 CNN HD launches.
- Multichannel News April 29, 2008 FOX News to make HD bow with Time Warner
- Cable Channel Nods to Ratings and Leans Left. New York Times. Published November 6, 2007. Accessed August 24, 2008.
- Kurtz, Howard (2008-09-08). "MSNBC Drops Olbermann, Matthews as News Anchors". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-09-30.
- Stelter, Brian (2008-09-07). "MSNBC Takes Incendiary Hosts From Anchor Seat". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-09-30.
- MSNBC To Go HD in June
- "State of the News Media 2004". Journalism.org. 2004. Retrieved 28 January 2009.
- "State of the News Media 2008". Journalism.org. 2008. Retrieved 28 January 2009.
- Associated Press March 28, 2009 CNN in third place in prime time for first time
- Jesse Holcomb, Amy Mitchell and Tom Rosenstiel (2012). "Cable: By the Numbers". The State of the News Media 2012. The Pew Research Center. Retrieved 29 August 2012.
- State of the Media 2009 Ratings Chart
- Fox Business Network Flop
- Krakauer, Steve (2009-10-06). Has Fox Business Found Its Star? Imus Premiere Gets Strong Ratings. Retrieved 2009-10-08.
- New York Times September 3, 2007 Picking Up the Pace in Business TV
- TV By the Numbers O’Reilly vs. Olbermann Through Thursday, March 19
- Fastcompany.com December 17, 2007 The Revolution Will Be Televised (on CNBC)