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Rough month for CNN and Anderson Cooper

October 26, 2009 |  4:47 pm

So last May we wrote a little piece about the ratings falling for Anderson Cooper's CNN show "AC360." We even suggested that the way things were going, he was "in danger of being passed in the ratings by MSNBC's 10 p.m. repeat of "Countdown with Keith Olbermann."

COOPER That led to a series of angry e-mails from CNN's media team that such a thing was not possible. Well, guess what? This month so far, in the key demographic of adults ages 25-54, the rerun of "Countdown" beat "AC360." According to Nielsen, "Countdown" at 10 p.m. averaged 222,000 viewers in that demographic while "AC360" averaged 210,000.

Among all viewers, "AC360" is still beating the "Countdown" rerun but the gap there is closing as well. For the month, "AC360" attracted 689,000 viewers while "Countdown" drew 600,000.

Overall for the month so far, Fox News crushed its competition. In prime time it averaged 2.2 million viewers, compared with 730,000 for MSNBC, 679,000 for CNN and 530,000 for HLN, formerly named Headline News. In adults 25-54, it's really bad news for CNN, which may end up finishing fourth in that crucial demo. CNN has a slim lead over HLN (which is also owned by CNN parent Time Warner).

Of course, all the news channels are off from last October because that was in the midst of a heated presidential election. Still, the drops for CNN are far greater than for its rivals.

-- Joe Flint

Photo: CNN's Anderson Cooper. Credit: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times.