George Burns/Harpo Productions via AP
Ever since Oprah's endorsement of Barack Obama, the media has tried to spin stories that Oprah's ratings decreases for her daytime talk show are tied to that endorsement. Even though there is not any evidence that clearly supports such a view, the stories persist.
For a while, we were getting multiple requests a week to look at that data, and whenever we looked at it, we couldn't come up with anything to actually support the case. At least unless we could somehow attribute decreases with Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune to Oprah's endorsement of Obama too.
Over the weekend, the AP did another story on Winfrey's ratings and based on that, The New York Times' David Carr penned a post for Media Decoder titled "Oprah's Politics May Have Viewers Voting With Their Feet".
Even though the article starts out by pointing out some truths, that ratings are down pretty much for everyone, and that despite Oprah being down 7% last year versus the prior year, shows like Jerry Springer's and Martha Stewart's were down double digit percentages. But, it then abandons rational analysis of the numbers and jumps into the speculative fray about the role Oprah's politics play.