Many of us love to joke that Fox News is the network of white, angry and senescent people, who need 24/7 affirmation of their inherent prejudices whilst dining on a tv dinner. Well, that scenario is slowly turning into a bitter reality for the fair and balanced network. For example, audience data for 2015 shows the average age of Fox News primetime viewers is stuck at 68.
Through Dec. 15 (which was the day of the last GOP debate), CNN’s median age was 61 years old for total day, and 59 years old for prime time (Monday-Sunday). MSNBC’s audience is two years older, at 63 (for both total day and prime time), while FNC’s is 67 for total day and 68 in prime time. For both MSNBC and FNC, that’s the oldest level on record in both dayparts.
To rework a great quote from the one and only Frank Zappa, Fox News is not dead; it just smells funny.
To be clear, as their audience gets ages, they are actually killing their network. If they are unable to pull in younger viewers, their current old, angry lily white audience will die of old age and the network will die with them. Sound familiar.
It’s really no coincidence that Fox News’ problems with younger viewers are virtually identical as the Republican Party, which is the party for which Fox News so flagrantly cheerleads. Frank Rich, of the New York Times, eloquently pointed this out nearly a year ago.
Hard as it may be to fathom, Fox Nation is even more monochromatically white than the GOP is, let alone the American nation. Two percent of Mitt Romney’s voters were black. According to new Nielsen data, only 1.1 percent of Fox News’s prime-time viewership is (as opposed to 25 percent for MSNBC, 14 percent for CNN, and an average of roughly 12 percent for the three broadcast networks’ evening news programs).
In short, Fox News is no longer a television news channel; it’s something to play in senior living homes in between rounds of bingo. Sure, Megyn Kelly and Shepard Smith appear to be the network’s two lone voices of reason (sometimes)–trying to maintain some journalistic integrity–but the fact remains that Fox News will need to throw on more token liberals (I’m available) if it wishes to remain relevant.
Featured image via Alternet