Turner Defends CNN's Ratings Reach, Promotes New TBS Talk Show
CNN's Wolf Blitzer
CNN may be losing ground in the battle for cable news ratings, but the network's cross-platform reach is second to none.
That was the message CNN president Jon Klein put forth Wednesday at Turner Broadcasting's three-hour panel during the Television Critics Association press tour, according to TheWrap.com. When factoring in broadband traffic, 117.2 million tune into CNN weekly via one platform or another, according to Nielsen.
When measured by the same criteria, MSNBC is CNN's closest competitor with 99.4 million users each week. Fox News ranks third in cross-platform reach with 98.2 million users, though it still dominates CNN among traditional TV ratings. Even so, Klein said his network shows growth this year.
"You've got one network on the right and one on the left, and we're the only one that is based on reporting news," Klein said. "That's really working for us. Our journalistic quality is higher than it's ever been."
Turner is also joining late night as comedian George Lopez hosts a new talk show on TBS. The show's producers hope to appeal to a more diverse audience in the 11/10 CT hour. Plus, TBS' programming serves as a nice setup to a talk show looking for laughs.
"We've got comedy leading into this four nights a week," Turner entertainment president Michael Wright said. "Nobody else in late night can say that."
Plus, they have President Barack Obama on their side. Obama appeared briefly in a promo reel for the show and lauded Lopez for bringing "change I can believe in" to late-night TV.
"I consider the 44th president of the United States a good friend of mine," Lopez joked. "He's practically Latino. He lives in a house that's not his, and he has his mother-in-law living (there) to help to raise his kids."