People Still Want News


The audience for NPR’s daily news programs, including “Morning Edition”
and “All Things Considered,” reached a record last year, driven by
widespread interest in the presidential election, and the general
decline of radio news elsewhere. Washington-based NPR will release new
figures to its stations today showing that the cumulative audience for
its daily news programs hit 20.9 million a week, a 9 percent increase
over the previous year.

The weekly audience for all the programming fed by Washington-based
NPR — including talk shows and music — also reached a record last
year, with 23.6 million people tuning in each week, an 8.7 percent
increase over 2007.

While almost every news organization saw its audience spike during
the political campaign last year, NPR’s surge continues a trend that
goes back to at least the fall of 2000, when the organization began
aggregating audience data from hundreds of affiliated public stations
across the country. NPR saw a big audience increase after the terrorist
attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and has added listeners since. Its audience
has grown 47 percent since 2000, according to figures from Arbitron.

You know, I rail on this one a lot because it’s the one I know enough about to counter easily, but the utter dishonesty of the conventional wisdom on this particular issue makes me wonder how many other accepted “realities” in various industries are complete bullshit.


4 thoughts on “People Still Want News

  1. the this american life financial stuff has been awesome.
    NPR stations were the best we could get in Northern WI, so i always remember it as a kid in the 70’s. of course in my teens i fell away, but finally got back into NPR. i am bummed that day to day was cancelled. the new show WUWM has on is SO old school boring NPR.

  2. But many of the NPR programs look at a news item in-depth.
    Many of the NPR programs, even satirically, look at news items in moe depth than I get on my local news channel (see A’s earlier story on Build-a-Bear).

  3. well, I started listening to NPR in 1990. So I’m not one of the “pickups”. But I know that, much as they annoy me with their “Nice Polite Republicans” pieces, at least they’ll give me information on stuff besides Britney or Paris Hilton’s latest public misbehavior.
    Damn. I guess I really have lowered the bar since the days I used to be a newspaper reporter.

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