A new analysis released yesterday by the media monitoring group Media Matters found that evening cable news guests are overwhelmingly white and male. According to the report, titled “Diversity on Evening Cable News in 13 Charts,” women and other people of color are underrepresented as guests on evening cable news programs at MSNBC, CNN and Fox News.
Media Matters examined the guests of thirteen evening cable news shows on CNN, MSNBC and Fox News during the month of April 2013. During that time period, only 33% of MSNBC guests, 29% Fox News guests and 24% CNN guests were female. Latinos fared much worse. Only 3% of Fox News guests and 2% of CNN and MSNBC guests were Latino.
An excerpt of some of the findings are below:
White Guests Were Hosted Most Often On Cable News. Fox News had the largest proportion of white guests — 83 percent. African-Americans were the largest non-white group on all networks, representing 19 percent, 10 percent, and 5 percent of guests on MSNBC, Fox, and CNN, respectively.
The Rachel Maddow Show Was Least Ethnically Diverse. Although The Rachel Maddow Show hosted fewer guests than other shows on MSNBC, those who were invited were most likely to be white. Out of 65 total guests, only 7 were non-white.
All In With Chris Hayes Was The Most Diverse Show In Evening Cable News. All In had both the largest proportion of women and the largest proportion of non-white guests — both 41 percent. All In also had the lowest proportion of white men — again 41 percent. Hayes’ show was the only evening cable news program to obtain such diversity.
Piers Morgan Live Guest Lineup Was 91 Percent White. CNN’s most ethnically diverse show was Outfront, which still hosted white guests 71 percent of the time. Similar to The Situation Room, the higher proportion of non-white guests on Outfront can be attributed in part to a couple of regular commentators: CNN correspondents Christiane Amanpour and Fareed Zakaria on The Situation Room and conservative political commentator Reihan Salam and political comedian Dean Obeidallah on Outfront.
White Men Were Vastly Overrepresented On Cable News. While white men enjoyed representation on cable that was nearly double that of their representation in the U.S. population, white women, who represent 32 percent of the population, were only 21 percent of guests on cable. Non-white women fared even worse. While they make up 19 percent of the population, they were only 8 percent of all guests on cable. Non-white men were also underrepresented; only 13 percent of guests on cable were non-white men while they make up 18 percent of the population.
The president of the National Hispanic Media Coalition released a statement on how he believes these findings may have real real world consequences.
“At a time when Latinos are over 16% of the country, a growing bloc of the electorate, and with over $1 trillion per year of buying power, it is unimaginable that we be excluded from cable news at such rates. This has a real affect on our community - the way we are perceived is how we are treated, and when our experts are absent from these programs it gives the perception that Latinos are not making meaningful contributions to this country, which couldn’t be further from the truth,” said NHMC president Alex Nogales in a statement sent to Colorlines.com.