What were the Murdochs thinking?
Following Tucker Carlson's ouster from Fox News, the network has experienced a precipitous decline in ratings, while Carlson has been receiving offers left and right from other networks.
For starters, Patrick Bet-David, CEO of online content company Valuetainment, offered former Fox News host Tucker Carlson a $100 million deal over five years, plus a board seat at the company, in a high-profile courting attempt on Tuesday.
"Dear Tucker, I’ll get right to the point. We want you to partner with us in what we feel is a noble and necessary effort to define the future of media," wrote David, who also hosts the Valuetainment brand’s podcast, in the opening of the letter of intent posted on Twitter on May 2 according to the Epoch Times.
The letter outlines David’s offer to Carlson: $100 million over five years, an equity stake in Valuetainment, a position as the President of Valuetainment, a board seat, and other content Carlson may be interested in covering.
“What else? We are all ears,” David wrote. “Our convictions about freedom, liberty, and truth run deep and we believe we are the absolute right fit for you and America.”
With a motto of “to enlighten, entertain and empower,” Valuetainment currently publishes its content, including podcasts and interviews, on YouTube and other social media platforms. Its YouTube channel has over 4 million subscribers, and its social media platforms, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter, have a following of over 10 million. The brand’s podcast, PBD Podcast, ranks 12th on Spotify in the platform’s business category as of writing.
The brand’s podcast has hosted prominent figures in various fields, including the late basketball superstar Kobe Bryant, clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson, current presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr., legal scholar Alan Dershowitz, celebrity scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson, and investor Robert Kiyosaki. The company’s most-watched YouTube video, featuring an interview with a mafia boss, has over 18 million views.
Valuetainment’s Tuesday offer joins a number of media companies—as the first public one—that are reportedly considering or have extended invites to Carlson to join their roster after the top-rated TV personality parted ways with his former employer last Monday.
In an interview with talk show host Megyn Kelly on Tuesday, David, a refugee who fled from Iran to America at the age of 12, said Carlson should work with him because he has “the vision in place, the cause in place, and is a true believer on how great of a country America is that is worth fighting for.”
MSNBC tops Fox in primetime ratings
Meanwhile, left-leaning MSNBC's primetime ratings dominated Fox News on Monday, May 1, according to data from Nielsen.
That evening, Fox News had 1.598 million viewers, while MSNBC had 1.693 million viewers. In the valuable 25-54 demographic, Fox News had 164,000 viewers vs. 176,000 for MSNBC.
As the Epoch Times notes;
In terms of total day viewers, Fox News was still No. 1 in total viewers and demographic viewers, the ratings show.
Last week, Brian Kilmeade filled in during Carlson’s 8 p.m. timeslot for a show dubbed “Fox News Tonight.” This week, Lawrence Jones was tapped to host the program, performing those duties on both Monday and Tuesday nights.
About 2.5 million people watched Kilmeade’s first show on April 24, while the figure ultimately dropped to about 1.3 million on Friday, April 28, according to Nielsen ratings. Jones’ “Fox News Tonight” drew 1.55 million—more than Kilmeade’s Friday show, but not by much.
In the 8 p.m. slot, “Fox News Tonight” performed better than Anderson Cooper’s CNN show, which drew 634,000 viewers, and MSNBC’s “All In,” which drew 1.2 million.
The top cable news performer on Monday night was MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, who drew 2.2 million. Fox News’ Sean Hannity also suffered a drop in viewership in the days after Carlson’s departure, again losing viewers on Monday night when about 1.7 million watched his 9 p.m. program, the ratings show.
Carlson had averaged more than 3 million viewers per show during the month of March, according to Nielsen. For all of 2022, his nightly program produced similar numbers on average.
When it announced that Carlson would be leaving the network, Fox News said it would use a rotating cast to host what it described as a temporary program before a new show and host is named. Other details about why Carlson was released or what was discussed were not provided.
Over the past several days, there have been anonymously sourced reports and what appear to be leaked videos of Carlson on the set of his show. In one video that was posted by left-wing activist group Media Matters for America, Carlson directly insulted the group in what appeared to be a joke.
In another, Carlson was seen criticizing the network’s streaming service, Fox Nation, and that “nobody watches Fox Nation because the site sucks” and “doesn’t work.” That clip, released by Media Matters, was reportedly shot in late 2022.
Great job Murdochs, you played yourselves...