Following the news that FoxNews.com is the “leader online,” CNN has asked for a correction to be issued by Pew Research Center.
Web traffic data taken from a sample month, January 2015, shows FoxNews.com leading the other two major cable news brands, according to data from the analytics firm comScore, with a total of about 55 million unique visitors. In the same month, CNN.com drew around 50 million unique visitors. MSNBC.com drew far fewer visitors (about 7 million) than the other two.
Matt Dornic, spokesman for CNN Worldwide, told Erik Wemple of the Washington Post, “The data significantly misrepresents CNN’s digital audience.”
According to Wemple, the spokesman argues that Pew drew those conclusions from one month in a report that was an annual report, and that the report:
Uses a custom entity, [E] Foxnews.com, for Fox News against raw site-level property metrics, [S] for CNN.com. This is not an apples-to-apples comparison since a custom entity may contain a collection of other URLs that remain hidden. As it turns out, we learned from our inquiry to comScore that Fox News’ custom entity is also comprised of a variety off-site traffic assignment letters (TALs) and, as such, is not truly the audience of foxnews.com but instead is assigned traffic from other sites that is reallocated back to Fox News even though the visitor did not consume said content on foxnews.com.
(H/t Johnny Dollar)