CNN's focused coverage of Flight 370 may be earning it the ridicule of the commentariat, but it has boosted its ratings in the long war with MSNBC to be No.2 after Fox.
Viewership numbers were "soft" in the full-day and mornings, as an MSNBC spokeswoman said. Or "the lowest total since May 2007," as The Times puts it. (Depending on how you break it down, we're talking average viewerships at the non-Fox networks in the low- to mid-six figures.)
The monthly averages, of course, may not tell the full story, since interest in the missing Malaysia Airlines jet presumably waned as the weeks went by. And MSNBC did take back the No. 2 spot for Thursday and Friday. I'd love to see the April figures charted over time.
Regardless, running behind CNN's morning show left Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough a little bent out of shape, as he told The Times: "CNN has made itself a punch line on the 'Daily Show' for its phony breaking-news headlines and breathless coverage of random ocean debris. 'Morning Joe' topped CNN in the first quarter by covering hard news, just as we have for the past five years. We will do the same in the future and won't be distracted by 'X-Files' cable news programming."
True, but it's a good thing he let loose on an outlet other than his show. Maybe someone will hear him.