An FNC spokesperson let ICN know that Brigitte Quinn is not on maternity leave, as was incorrectly reported by the TV Newser blog. Quinn asked to have her hours cut back so that she may deal with a personal family issue. Her request has been granted, so viewers will see less of her each week on FNC.
July 24, 2006
During Studio B today, Shepard Smith had some rare interview opportunities. As Israeli troops came back from the Israel-Lebanon border where the fighting was going on, Smith was able to get interviews with some of the soldiers returning from the front lines.
The soldiers explained to Smith that Hezbollah is “not a terrorist group. They are lot more stronger army than the Lebanese army…They have everything from normal bases to outposts to supplies like a normal army always operates.” One of the returning soldiers also told Smith why he’s fighting: “I fight to help my country. If I won’t do it, who will…Who would protect our country? It’s our country, we need to live here.”
The O’Reilly Factor led the way for FNC and cable news with the most Prime Time viewers. Conversely, Countdown, minus Keith Olbermann who was in transit to LA for the Critics Association, wound up in 4th place in both Total Viewers and The Demo. On The Record with Greta Van Susteren led the way with the primetime Demo lead.
P2+ Total Day
FNC – 1,010,000 viewers
CNN - 581,000 viewers
MSNBC - 273,000 viewers
HLN - 296,000 viewers
CNBC - 156,000 viewers
P2+ Prime Time
FNC - 1,646,000 viewers
CNN – 777,000 viewers
MSNBC – 372,000 viewers
HLN - 462,000 viewers
CNBC - 111,000 viewers
25 - 54 Total Day
FNC - 346,000 viewers
CNN - 240,000 viewers
MSNBC - 120,000 viewers
HLN - 136,000 viewers
CNBC – a scratch with 50,000 viewers
25 - 54 Prime Time
FNC - 456,000 viewers
CNN - 282,000 viewers
MSNBC - 178,000 viewers
HLN - 195,000 viewers
CNBC –a scratch with 56,000 viewers
The Imus Blog notes that this morning Tom Aspell apparently walked off camera in the middle of an interview with Don Imus…
NBC correspondent Tom Aspell blew off Imus in the middle of an interview. As the camera was running, and in the middle of a question, Aspell walks off and says, “CNBC.” It was very bizarre.
Did anyone see this?
GretaWire is asking if viewers might have specific questions on the Middle East Crisis that they’d like to have answered…
Yesterday, I e-mailed back and forth with FNC’s Jennifer Griffin in Israel. She raised the point that viewers might have specific questions that we are not asking and answering. That’s a good point. So, if you have a question about the war that you want our correspondents in Israel, Lebanon, etc., to answer, please e-mail it to me. I may ask your e-mailed question on air tonight to our people on the ground there.
CNN announced that Wolf Blitzer will be anchoring his program, The Situation Room, from the Middle East this week. Stupid question, but wasn’t the whole point of The Situation Room to have Blitzer at a central location where stories and images would come together? If you take Blitzer out of that environment - out of The Situation Room - and put him on location where he’s now just another remote news source, then what’s the point? I guess I’ll see how they handle this soon enough.
CNN’s Wolf Blitzer anchors The Situation Room live from Jerusalem today and Tuesday, July 25, as the network continues its unrivaled news reports and detailed analysis of fighting in Israel, Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. In addition to comprehensive coverage of the violence, CNN examines the conflict’s effects on both sides of the Israeli-Lebanese border.
Blitzer will remain in the region, anchoring The Situation Room from several vantage points for the rest of the week. The Situation Room airs each weekday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and again from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Over the past two weeks, CNN has provided viewers around the world with unrivaled coverage of the ongoing turmoil between Israel and Lebanon thanks to a deep, rotating bench of the most experienced correspondents and experts. Presently, CNN has posted more than 100 personnel to the region, including nearly two dozen CNN anchors and correspondents.
Here are the program averages for the 8pm hour since the Middle East Crisis began. The O’Reilly Factor has been the top rated show for the hour (and in cable news). Another beneficiary has been Paula Zahn Now which is increased its gap between itself and Countdown. While Countdown has had something of a ratings bump, it hasn’t been enough to move it ahead of Nancy Grace (though I’m sure someone will point out that it is beating Grace in the Demo).
(P25-54 is in parentheses)
FNC The O’Reilly Factor 2,432,000 (603,000)
CNN Paula Zahn Now 868,000 (304,000)
HLN Nancy Grace 459,000 (144,000)
MSNBC Countdown 454,000 (180,000)
MediaPost Publications’ George Simpson writes about the networks, broadcast and cable, sending their anchors over to cover a story - the type of story that nearly got Bob Woodruff killed…
With the networks investing millions in the anchors themselves and millions more in promoting their broadcasts as better than the next guy’s (not to mention medical costs if another newsreader gets the Woodruff treatment from the combatants), you’d think the anchors would be the last folks the networks would put in harm’s way. News directors claim that having their stars huddled on a balcony overlooking explosions in the background somehow “focuses” the newscast on that particular story. But who knows how many people tune in just to see if Charles Gibson or Brian Williams or Soledad O’Brien get Katyusha-ed on live TV?
UPDATE: Tim Cuprisin in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes along similar lines but tries to draw a distinction between what a Brian Williams can do and what an Anderson Cooper can do with the air time they have…
With just a half-hour a night - 22 minutes, if you take out the commercials - there’s not much an anchor can do, other than show his face.
The situation is different for the cable anchors, like CNN’s Cooper, who has plenty of time on camera - at least two hours a night from 9 to 11 p.m. On Friday, he was able to put together a one-hour special on Hezbollah, the Shiite Muslim force that is the main target for the Israeli offensive.