The just released February ratings (pdf) for cable news networks tell a tale that is decidedly downbeat for Fox News, the leader in propaganda programming. In a comparison with February 2005, the numbers for every network are up except for Fox. Details follow.....
Fox's Prime Time erosion was even greater at -21%. In fact, in every hour in the daypart, from 3:00pm till midnight, Fox numbers were lower. This is a distinction that only Fox, of the five nets surveyed, was able to achieve.
The largest decline was suffered by Greta Van Susteran's On The Record (-22%), followed closely by O'Reilly (-21%). Hannity & What's His Name took the Bronze (-17%). Of the MSNBC programs opposite those losers, Olbermann's Countdown was the biggest gainer (55%), which I'm sure doesn't bother O'Reilly at all.
The growing feud between Bill and Keith is something unique in commercial television. It has taken on a personal tone that I can't recall witnessing before. There is, however, a difference in style. While Olbermann is merciless in his mockery, he sticks to commenting on the substance of O'Reilly's program and the stupid or demonstrably false things that O'Reilly says. Billy, on the other hand, seems to respond only by pointing out that more people watch his show than Olbermann's. You know, the 2 million flies defense. But if O'Reilly isn't careful, he may soon not have even that to crow about.