More people 34 and younger watching The Daily Show than actual cable news for political convention coverage

Every four years, the presidential campaigns take hold of our TV lives at the end of the summer with the major party political conventions. The Democrats and Republicans still secure at least an hour of live primetime coverage each night on the big three broadcast networks, as well as additional hours from the cable news networks.

Since the RNC and DNC are pretty much a propaganda farce at this point, it’s no wonder that comedians have converged upon them to seize upon the satire of it all. See: Comedians at the conventions.

Would it surprise you, though, to learn that when the conventions hammer their gavels at around 11 p.m. Eastern each weeknight, that TV viewers under the age of 35 turned their attention to Comedy Central instead of to the actual cable news outlets for news and analysis? Yes. Young Americans would rather have analysis and satire of the news media than hear the gobbledygook coming out of the talking heads on cable news.

The coveted 18-34 demographic broke down their viewership last week during the RNC thusly in the 11 o’clock hour, which included, for Comedy Central, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report:

  • Comedy Central: 450,000 viewers
  • FOX News: 329,000
  • MSNBC: 158,000
  • CNN: 146,000

When the demographic aged up to include people ages 35-49, Comedy Central dipped down to second place in post-convention viewership, only behind FOX News.

Here is a segment from Tuesday night’s episode of The Daily Show, in which Jon Stewart’s team of “correspondents” asked Democratic delegates for a new slogan for President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. They found one. Even made a music video for it. But…

Roll it.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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