Monday, September 19, 2011

Cable News "Birthdays"

Fox News turns 15 this fall, and will be celebrating with a promotional tour, taking several of its top programs on the road. Despite regular outcries of bias and conservatism, Fox News succeeded following one of the basic rules of programming in a competitive market - find a market segment feeling underserved by existing services, and appeal to it.  MSNBC, launched a few months earlier (happy 15th to you, too) went the other way - trying to be CNN only more tech-y.  Within a few years, Fox challenged CNN for ratings supremacy, and now regularly outperforms its competitors, routinely getting double the audience of CNN, while MSNBC languished in the basement before following Murdoch's basic strategy of targeting an underserved niche by appealing to the uber-left and clawing its way back into competition with CNN in some dayparts.

In other news, a second Arab news channel is slated to debut next year.  The new channel, Alarab, will target Arab-speaking audiences around the world, focusing on political, social, and economic issues in Saudi Arabia and the region.  Alarab is owned by Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, who happens to also be the second largest shareholder in News Corp., owner of Fox News (among other things).  So far, no indication of an Arab edition of O'Reilly, although the channel does have a deal with Bloomberg financial news for 5 hours of financial and economic news per day.

Sources - Fox News Turns 15, Continues to Wield Outsized InfluenceTVBlog
Arab News Channel Debuts in 2012MediaDailyNews

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