On Sunday, we pointed out how the New York Times shamelessly plugged MSNBC "wonk prince" Chris Hayes as hot and trendy among young hipsters. The Times should wince now that Jeff Poor at The Daily Caller dug up the actual ratings to embarrass Times writer Alex Williams for hailing the weekend ratings of Up! With Chris Hayes. It turns out the “Uppers” weren’t as numerous or trending as positively as the Times implied.
On Saturday mornings (8 to 9 am), Hayes is crushed by Fox & Friends Saturday. In the first quarter in all viewers (2-plus), it’s Fox with 1.182 million to MSNBC’s 426,000. In the second quarter to date numbers, it’s even worse: Fox with 1.261 million to MSNBC’s 350,000.
While Fox increased its audience across demographics – in overall numbers as well as the advertiser-favorite 25 to 54 block and the 18 to 34 block the Times touted as a Hayes strength – Hayes has declined across all demographics.
On Sunday mornings (8 to 9 am), the story is similar: Hayes is crushed by Fox & Friends Sunday. Among all viewers in the first quarter, Fox drew 1.217 million while MSNBC managed to find 360,000. In the second quarter to date numbers, it was even worse: Fox with 1.23 million, and MSNBC with 322,000.
Then look at the prized 18-34 demographic the New York Times touted. On Sunday, Hayes was beating Fox in that demographic in the first quarter (which would explain the cherry-picking), but the gap was just 55,000 to 41,000. In the second quarter to date, the places switched: Fox drew 53,000, while Hayes dropped to 48,000. Fox was up 29 percent, and Hayes was down 13 percent in that slice of ratings. But here again is how the Times hyped Hayes:
Mr. Hayes’s program was one of the few to surge, rising about 15 percent in total viewers over MSNBC’s programming in the time slot from the previous year. Since Dec. 26, it has been No. 1 on average in its Sunday time slot on cable news channels among viewers ages 18 to 34, according to Nielsen figures provided by the network.
Um, no. On Sundays, Hayes also lost narrowly to CNN Sunday Morning in the first quarter, and in the second quarter to date, it lost narrowly to CNN and HLN. On Sundays, Hayes is trending down in all demographics.
The Times piece now seems designed to try and save a sinking ship, not tout a success. Clearly the “figures provided by the network” might have skipped the second quarter to date!