CNN’s ratings surged on Tuesday night, as it broadcast the first rescue of 33 miners who had been trapped in a Chilean mine, reports The New York Times’ Media Decoder blog.
The cable-news network, usually in third place, jumped to first place with 5 million viewers between 11 p.m. and 11:15 p.m., when the first miner surfaced, the story says. Fox News Channel averaged 4.3 million viewers, while 1.3 million people tuned into MSNBC. The three channels combined typically draw just 2 million viewers at that time, the article points out.
Audiences stayed up late to watch continued coverage of the rescue, with CNN drawing 1.7 million viewers from 1 a.m. until 2 a.m., the story says. Fox was watched by 1.2 million viewers during that hour and MSNBC 575,000.
ABC’s "Nightline" extended its program to an hour to cover the rescue, drawing 5 million viewers — more than the late-night talk shows on NBC and CBS, the article adds.