From the NYT:
Fusion Media Aims at Millennials, but Struggles to Find Its Identity
By RAVI SOMAIYA and BROOKS BARNES MAY 24, 2015
In 2011, when Isaac Lee, president of news for Univision, set out to persuade his company and Disney to back Fusion, a digital news service and cable channel he wanted to start, he promised nothing less than the holy grail: young viewers for the older media conglomerates.
He played a slide show in which a middle-aged white man transformed into a young brown woman. The executives present were dazzled.
… Fusion has grown quickly, with 250 employees and offices in Miami, New York, Washington, D.C., Boulder, Colo., and Oakland, Calif. …
Its web traffic late last year, according to internal figures obtained by The New York Times, dropped as low as 23,000 page views on some days.
Let’s see, 23,000 page views divided by 250 employees … let me get my calculator …
Mr. Madrigal described the organization in simple terms: “Fusion is a cable and digital network that is championing a more diverse and inclusive America.” It will do so by hiring those who are “naturally and natively interested in things that the rising generation of people in America are interested in,” he added. That will include television shows on topics like prisons …
After all, what advertiser doesn’t want a captive audience?
Fusion is also a cable television network, with some curious programming choices. For example, on Sundays it runs The Chris Gethard Show: The Public Access Years for 14 straight hours from 5 am to 7 pm.
The watch words of the Fusion TV network are “News, Pop Culture, Satire” — the goal apparently is to be a 24×7 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart for young English-speaking Hispanics.
But assuming that Fusion survives The Chris Gethard Years, is this a truly dazzling strategy?
Or is it a bunch of white executives strategizing over how to stick it to the old white men who watch Fox News by politically mobilizing the diverse masses of young brown women who, we’re assuming, are desperate for left-of-center political commentary? They are, aren’t they?
I’ve noticed that it takes a fair amount of Googling to find entertainment data, such as Nielsen ratings, for Hispanics. One reason for this is because Nielsen has a monopoly and thus traditionally does a lackadaisical job. Another reason is that Hispanic media choices are not very distinctive. They tend to like whatever everybody else likes.
This is in sharp contrast to black tastes, which are very black. Here are recent Nielsen ratings:
AFRICAN AMERICAN AUDIENCE ESTIMATES
|2||NBA PLAYOFFS ON ABC-SA2||ABC||8.5||1693|
|4||NCIS: NEW ORLEANS||CBS||6.8||1233|
|10||PERSON OF INTEREST||CBS||5.8||1034|
|* Ratings based on 13.65 million African American TV homes.
Blacks love Shonda Rhimes’ Scandal (starring Kerry Washington as a Washington PR fixer) and the NBA. Blacks ratings are much more concentrated than for Hispanics because blacks like shows with blacks in them and don’t really care about shows such as Big Bang Theory and Modern Family without major black characters.
And here are Nielsen ratings for shows in English among Hispanics, which look a lot like the overall ratings.
HISPANIC ENGLISH-LANGUAGE VIEWING
|1||DANCING WITH THE STARS||ABC||3.7||760|
|2||BIG BANG THEORY, THE||CBS||3.2||692|
|6||DWS: THE RESULTS SHOW-5/5(S)-05/05/2015||ABC||2.8||567|
|6||NCIS: NEW ORLEANS||CBS||2.8||528|
Latinos like dancing, but in general this looks a lot like the overall ratings. Here are the ratings for everybody of all ethnicities, although for the following week (does it take Nielsen an extra week to massage their black and Hispanic ratings?)
TOP 25 PROGRAMS – BROADCAST
|2||DANCING WITH THE STARS||ABC||8.6||14||10048||2||4.6||13479|
|3||NCIS: NEW ORLEANS||CBS||8.5||14||9878||2||4.6||13610|
|4||DWS:THE RESULTS SHOW-5/12(S)||ABC||6.7||11||7820||5||3.4||10159|
|5||BILLBOARD MUSIC AWARDS(S)||ABC||6.5||11||7573||4||3.8||11181|
|7||BIG BANG THEORY, THE||CBS||6.1||11||7082||7||3.2||9567|
It doesn’t hurt the Hispanic ratings of Modern Family, a fairly sophisticated sitcom that the cast includes the highly entertaining Sofia Vergara, who is the ultimate evolution of the blonde bimba going back at least to Charo, but mostly English-speaking Hispanics seem to watch what everybody else is watching, only more so.