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April 27, 2017

ESPN Experiences Dramatic Shift In Political Affiliation Of Viewers Prior To Layoffs [Warden]

As soon as the story broke, two competing narratives emerged. The left argued that ESPNs declining viewership has nothing to do with its leftward programming shift and everything to do with cable cutting, while the right argued that ESPNs decline is due to conservative sports fans tuning them out.

Deep Root Analytics, a company specializing in analyzing local TV viewer-ship, dug into some of its numbers to see if there's any merit to the latter argument. What they found is stunning.

Specifically, in 2015, the ESPN audience on average skewed Republican across all dayparts, ranging from 12% more Republican (Early News, Late Fringe, Overnight) to 21% more Republican than Democratic (Early Morning).

In 2016, every daypart on ESPN became less conservative, with Daytime being only 2% more Republican than Democratic, while Late Fringe and Overnight programming became 10% and 12% more Democratic than Republican a 22 and 28 point shift, respectively.

The same is true across other ESPN properties. ESPN2 skewed Republican across most dayparts in 2015; in 2016 all dayparts skewed Democratic. Every daypart also switched on ESPN News from 2015 to 2016.

That's a 22% and 28% shift in viewer political affiliation in a single year.
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While it's true that cable cutting is largely to blame for ESPN's declining viewership, these numbers can't be ignored.

The left keeps arguing that it doesn't matter if conservatives tune out ESPN because they pay for it anyway as part of their cable package. Okay, fine. But one of the primary things that keeps men from cutting cable is sports programming. Piss off enough conservative sports fans with your SJW programming and many them will decide that maybe sports aren't so important after all. Then snip goes the cable.

And almost no one ever returns once they've made the decision to cut.

I have a hunch that this shift isn't just occurring within the ESPN universe, but also in sports viewership generally as the leagues themselves have also begun pushing left wing causes.

If so, this would create a secondary negative effect on ESPN. If you're not watching the games, you're certainly not tuning in for ESPNs analysis, opinion, or highlights, now are you?

Sports broadcast rights have been bid up into an unsustainable bubble over the past couple of decades and made athletes and franchise owners very, very rich.

Expect that bubble to burst as soon as ESPN's broadcast contracts begin to expire.

Update: ESPN takes down a poem published to their website that praised a cop killer.

It was part of an article titled "Five Poets of the New Feminism."

Yeah, I don't know what that has to do with sports either. It's like watching an uncle drink himself to death. One you really hate and can't wait to never see again.


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posted by Open Blogger at 08:07 PM

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