DUBAI: US-based news network CNN’s overall ratings this year fell by almost 90 percent, including in the advertisers’ lucrative 25 to 54 age demographic, according to Nielsen data.

The media company averaged 548,000 viewers during the first week of January compared to 2.7 million over the same period last year. And the seven-day figures showed that just 113,000 people in the 25 to 54 age group had tuned in this year against an average 822,000 in 2021.

Last year’s coverage of the Capitol Hill riots on Jan 6. garnered the highest number of viewers CNN had seen since its launch in 1980. But, a year later it had lost that high ground as viewers switched to rival Fox News.

Over the past 12 months, CNN has been rife with scandals. It fired primetime host Chris Cuomo after the anchor was found to be secretly helping his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, over sexual harassment allegations that resulted in his resignation.

Don Lemon, another primetime anchor, also came under fire for his coverage of “Empire” star Jussie Smollett’s trial where he failed to mention his involvement in tipping off the actor.

Despite having a record 2021, viewership across the network dropped during the second half of the year. CNN struggled for viewers during primetime — between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. — resulting in an 83 percent year-on-year drop, Nielsen’s data revealed.

Meanwhile, Fox News averaged a daily total of 1.41 million viewers during the week of Jan. 3, making it the most-watched network on basic cable in the Monday to Sunday 6 a.m. to 6 a.m. time period, reported Adweek. It also averaged more total viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined for the 21st consecutive week.

The report added that as of the week of Jan. 3, Fox News was in the lead with 1,408,000 total viewers through the day and 2,303,000 primetime viewers, while CNN trailed with 548,000 total viewers through the day and 705,000 primetime watchers.

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