Can CNN ever take control of prime time viewing?

CNN will once again change its prime time schedule next month in a bid to attract viewers away from its rivals. {jcomments on}
The pioneer of 24 hour news, CNN has had many landmark moments in its 31 years, but sadly dominating prime time viewing is something it is proving hard to do. The growth in popularity of right wing news channel Fox News, prompting MSNBC to take an even more left leaning approach, has led to CNN being squeezed out. Cable news programming in prime time are often discussion led, taking a political directive to suck in the audience.

It was announced last week that there would be changes which would come into effect in August. Eliot Spitzer’s show In The Arena finished on Wednesday, just hours after CNN announced the changes. Anderson Cooper’s AC360 will move to the 8pm slot from 8th August, with Piers Morgan Tonight remaining at 9pm. Former CNBC host Erin Burnett will be joining the channel in September to host a new show, expected to air at 7pm. John King USA and The Situation Room will move back one hour earlier.

CNN often finishes in third place, even fourth in some cases but it does come out on top when major breaking news occurs. When President Obama announced that Osama bin Laden had been killed, CNN achieved its best ratings in years, peaking at over 9 million viewers.