Fox News Should Watch Dancing with the Stars

I have to be honest, I watch fox news more often than any of the other cable news nets. I watch CNN next , then MSNBC.  So lets get that out of the way.

I watched Fox and MSNBC during the election cycle because it told me the worst possible elements that could be found about President Obama. and Governor Romney.  Both networks work so hard at branding every possible negative issue  about the other side that it’s very interesting to look at it as an exercise in branding and marketing. Neither truly was reporting the news. They were telling us how they believed a negative brand could be built.  And not only did they tell us how negative the other brand was, they were relentless in trying to create confirmation of that negative brand by bringing in “experts” to confirm their brand bias.

You know who both networks reminded me of ? All of their shows, with the exception of Bill OReilly reminded me of the old Coast to Coast with Art Bell radio show. Every night Art Bell would bring in  what were  essentially crackpots talking about life on mars, alien abductions (accept for the true ones of course :), Black Helicopter operations , pretty much crazy thinking across the board. What made Art Bell masterful was that he interviewed them and talked to them like there was absolutely no doubt in his and his listeners mind that everything the interviewee said was true.  Of course there is life on mars. Of course there are aliens living among us who can shift change to different animals. Of course the government has been working with Planet X for years .  Callers would call in and give their personal experiences with all the above. He confirmed for his listeners, callers and the crackpots he interviewed  that it was all true. Just because Art Bell made you believe he believed it was true. Whether or not he actually did, I have no idea. His show had a huge radio audience nationwide.

Both MSNBC and FOx News do the same thing with their branding efforts. No matter what the story, true or not, they were going to pull out every stop to make you think its true. Facts be damned.  Gov Romney lies about everything. Here are 3 people to confirm it. President Obama is running the dirtiest campaign ever, here are 3 people to confirm it. For every attempt to create a negative brand association for the other side, there were 3 experts confirming it multiple times a day.

When we got to the last week before the election, I noticed a subtle change in the branding of this election by Fox. Maybe MSNBC did it and I just didn’t see it. But Fox started branding hard the notion that Romney had all the momentum and was on his way to a win.  Dick Morris predicted a landslide over and over. Karl Rove would tell stories about Romney momentum and Obama being on the run.  Which ever poll showed Romney in the best light, that was the focus.  Charles Krauthammer was relentless in talking about the imminent disaster for Obama and win for Romney. It seemed to me in hindsight that only Bill Oreilly , (who’s show I like and who is a master of asking questions that are pre -spun so that the answers fit his needs, and dis engaging when he knows he is beat,  like he says, “Its my show. I can do what I want”), and Chris Wallace really tried to temper the branding blitz.( I like Chris as well. He asked questions the others seemed afraid to ask). Outside of these two, Fox was relentless in sending the message that a Romney win was imminent. There was no doubt about it and if you didn’t believe it , it was because you either followed the mainstream media too much or you were just stupid.

Like Art Bell, Fox made you believe that a Romney win was all but assured.  In the last couple days it was all they focused on.  We got this. Here is the proof. Here are people you trust telling you that its the truth.

But Fox had two huge problems. THe first was that there audience was far, far bigger than MSNBC or the other networks. They were the biggest during the debates. They were the biggest time and again leading up to election day. You would think that was great for Governor Romney. Right ?


THe 2nd huge problem for Fox and as a result Governor Romney is that they didn’t know the Dancing with the Stars bottom two principle. You would think that when one of the couples on DWTS is in the bottom two, thats a horrible sign.  It must mean they are close to elimination. Not for couples with a large voting base. When you have a large voting base and find yourself in the bottom two, your voting base recognizes that you are at risk of losing. Because they want you to stay on the show and voting counts as much as the dancing, they will step up and vote and keep you on the show until you find yourself up against couples that have a bigger voting base than you.

So what does this have to do with Fox and the Presidential election ?

I truly believe that supporters of Romney that watched Fox News thought it was a no brainer and that Gov Romney would win. Living in Texas I was around a lot of Romney supporters on Tuesday night who had no doubt that Gov Romney would win. None.

On the flipside, MSNBC doesn’t have the audience or do as good a job at branding issues as Fox News.  Fox News viewers take to hear what MSNBC viewers don’t.  When President Obama’s team reached out to minorities , women and others who felt threatened, it was easy to convey to them that they were the underdog. That no one thinks they can win. That they could make a difference.

And they did.


84 thoughts on “Fox News Should Watch Dancing with the Stars

  1. The simple fact is we American’s are smarter than we look. We hate when people don’t stand for what they really believe in, and aren’t clear about their intentions. That was Romney. That’s why he lost. THE END!

    Comment by visiontele2012 -

  2. very great blog…Keep posting same king of blogs every periods..Thanks…

    Comment by bvira clothing (@bviraclothing) -

  3. Mark,
    I am a huge fan of yours, I think you are a brilliant entrepreneur. I’ve read all your blogs, books, and watched all your interviews. You have become an Idol of mine and I greatly respect your opinion… I have an idea for a website that can change the advertising industry in cities all around the world. I would love to Email you a short description of my idea. I am not looking for capital or an investment, just your opinion. Any feedback you have would be extremely appreciated.

    Sal Ventre

    Comment by salvatoreventre3 -

  4. Mr Cuban i am so sorry for trying to contact you in this method, but i could not find any other way to contact you. One hour west of DFW is my small town of Mineral Wells Texas. The city council passed an ordianance a few months ago allowing all stores and restaraunts to serve and sell alcohol and hard liqour. Mineral Wells is host to many popular restaraunts and bars and now has a liquor store. I am trying to launch a taxi cab service before the holidays in a effort to SAVE LIVES by helping keep drunk drivers off the roads by providing this service. There currently is not a cab service in Mineral Wells and I have no competition. I am compleatly legit (you can check my fb page) and i can provide all forms showing my DBA, tax EIN, anything you need to see. I go before City Council of Mineral Wells on nov 20th for my application to opperate a taxi cab permit, and am simply running out of time and money. I have a very solid buisness model, and have been working very closely with a small buisness development professor from a near-by College and show posative projections almost immediatly. I have followed your 3 steps to success and have put many hours into this and am now afraid that my cab service is going to be much bigger than i first anticipated from the start and i will need more vehicles and employees. I am looking for an investor and could use your help. if you are not interested in investing, part of our buisness model is selling advertising on the cabs and are projecting good numbers from the advertising alone.I intend to give the cabs a Nascar “type” look and you could “sponsor” my cabs with a giant logo on the hood or trunk, as i need the start up capitol. i will NOT promote any tabbacco or alcohol business as we are a small christian based company. Please Help me save the lives of your fans and neighbors this holiday season and contact me. all my info is on my fb page. I know this is a long shot, but thank you for your time if you read this. God bless

    Comment by Johnathon Hamm -

    • Hey Johnathon Hamm, I would like to respond to your request, but I have no affiliation with Mr. Cuban. If there is no competition where you live, then showing up
      in a functioning car matters more than how cool it looks, and starting with a couple of ordinary cars is better than not starting at all assuming your business model is profitable with just a few cars.

      Selling ad space on the car is an intriguing idea, however, if your cab is involved in an accident, could liability somehow extend out to those advertising on your taxi, especially well know established entrepreneurs such as Mr. Cuban? What if the car was not up to spec and an accident resulted and then a lawsuit was filed because people assumed if Mr. Cuban’s name is on it, it must be safe and reliable?

      Good luck on your venture.

      Comment by alexlogic -

  5. It’s time to End The Electoral College; Mar, I’d love to see you put your might behind that movement.

    One Citizen – One Vote.

    Comment by (@FundingRoulette) -

  6. Here is the link to the Bol Bol video from my camp.

    Comment by CrossRoads Elite (@AdamShoulders) -

  7. My name is Adam Shoulders and I am the founder and organizer of CrossRoads Elite Basketball Camps (WWW.CROSSROADSELITE.COM), a middle school basketball camp series scanning the country in search of emerging elite talent.

    My first camp in Indianapolis on October 6-7 was a success with over 150 campers from 10 different states.

    Among the campers was 6’5 7th grader Bol Bol, son of the late Manute Bol (7’7). A highlight video of Bol from my camp went viral and made national news. Some media outlets that featured the video include: ESPN U, THE WASHINGTON POST, CBSSPORTS, MSN, and more.

    This media attention helped garner attention for my camp and put CrossRoads Elite in the headlines!

    Going forward I am looking for some funds to help my company grow…..I would love to talk with you more about the camp series and other avenues of opportunity for growth!

    You can reach me at my cell: 615 708 9762

    Take Care,

    Adam Shoulders

    CP 615 708 9762



    Sent from my iPad

    Comment by CrossRoads Elite (@AdamShoulders) -

  8. Stock Market Death Cross confirmed, Like I’ve been saying Major Bear Market coming, Gold and Silver to spike

    Comment by Bryan Deal (@BryanDeal1) -

  9. I am a FOX News viewer (not the only network I watch for news—-but the only one with a counter point—-as CBS, ABC, NBC, MSNBC and CNN as well as all major newspapers are on the far left). Anyway, I didn’t expect Mitt Romney to win the election. I live near Washington, DC—-not in Texas. Maybe that was the difference—-but I knew that odds were that Obama would repeat. It’s hard to defeat Santa Claus, when he takes from 5% and gifts to 50%.

    Comment by dcangelo -

  10. Fox News Should Watch Dancing With the Stars Nov 8th 2012 1:03AM
    Loved your insight on “Undercover Boss.”
    (…But Fox had two huge problems. The first was that *there* (sic) audience was far, far bigger than MSNBC or the other networks. They were the biggest during the debates.)
    * NOTE: Learn the difference between “there” (preposition) and “their” (possessive pronoun).

    Comment by Dorothy Dinwiddie -

  11. Do you really think that the pundits on fox and msnbc have that much authority over societies decision making?

    Comment by Cj Werley -

  12. Dear Mark Cuban:
    “I want to be your friend because I want your money”
    Pretty bold statement right?
    Well here it goes I would like you to come Fishing in Loreto B.C.Sur Mexico. If you have your own plain you will not have a problem getting here. If not this is were are problems start, you see the economy in Loreto B.C.Sur is really bad at this time, to the point that they are trying to open a Casino here, I’m fighting it with all my strengths because this in Mexico is a bad thing, Casinos bring an element that we cannot handel at any level, there is under 17,000 people here, check the news look for “Casino Royale Monterrey Nuevo Leon” I’m sure if you don’t speck Spanish some one that works for you can read it to you. 52 people died, the casino was set on fire and the body’s were found piled up in the bath room. to drug cartels were fighting over it.
    So what can you do?
    Well lets talk about it, I will take you all over Loreto, you will have to rent the car for I have no money I work as a guide so I know my stuff. Maybe you can help me with the level of poverty in some places, just a little hand out, banquets, food. I want nothing for me.
    You never know we may become friends, and the great thing about me is that you know what I want from you.
    Please contact my friend Pam at Baja Big Fish Company.
    Here is the links for are cause No to casino so you can see what I have done so far (and may friend Pam) sorry its in Spanish, but we are in Mexico. I have lived in Loreto since I was 1 year old.
    So here is the link. And see you soon.
    (I’m the crazy one in the middle of the street)
    Thank you for your time
    Linda Ramirez Wright.

    Comment by Linda Ramirez -

  13. Absolutely brilliant compendium of our modern media and how it works. It should be a wake-up call to people. It was so much simpler in the old days. Or…….perhaps it is simpler today to pull the skin of the sheep over all of us!!!!

    Comment by mediagy (@mediagy) -

  14. Pingback: » Success Demands Success, Fox News Should Watch Dancing With The Stars, & The Fiscal Cliff Looms :3 To Read

  15. Mark, you are very right on this one. Incumbency is like home court advantage to start with, worth five points or so before the election even gets started. And there are three reasons why people vote for one candidate over another, ranked in importance for enthusiasm and turnout for the candidate (and we’re are talking about a few percentage points here, but they still count):

    1) I love the my candidate and hate his opponent.
    2) I love my candidate and don’t feel much either way about the opposition.
    3) I don’t feel much either way about my candidate but hate the opposing candidate.

    From the beginning, it was obvious Romney had much too much of #3. He could have moved things up to more #1’s, but they never did that. Either they didn’t feel that was important, or couldn’t do it. I think it was the first reason, and that is flunking basic election campaigning 101.

    And they got their “F” because of arrogance. A lot of this came from those “experts” thinking they were smarter and better than those they were going against. That happens in any business. But there come a time when those at the top have to realize their consultants and branding marketers are off base with how they want to grow the market and they have to get rid of them. The GOP, after 2008, should have realized that being associated with Karl Rove and a lot of the Fox News “experts and Rush Limbaugh wasn’t good business. That is obvious now. What is even more amazing though, is that many in the GOP hierarchy think they should still be associated with these out-of-touch and over-the-hill clowns.

    Comment by Daniel J. McGraw -

  16. “Fox was relentless in sending the message …and if you didn’t believe it , it was because you either followed the mainstream media too much …”

    that’s the funniest (or saddest) part of the Fox machine, that they pretend that they’re somehow not a part of the same game.

    Comment by Steven V (@StevenJV) -

  17. Well, especially the last part.

    Comment by kellyaatkins -

  18. I love Mark but this theory could have been featured on Art Bell. Romney lost because Americans weren’t buying his brand of government.

    Comment by Raymond (@RaymondinSC) -

  19. Like many others I was totally turned off by the unconscionable broadcast ads in this campaign. We in Texas were spared the onslaught of ads that were run in the “swing” states like Ohio and Michigan where most of my relatives live. The billions that were spent to advertise malicious, salacious, truth bending, out of context ads is criminal. I was thinking about Mel Brooks today and his “It’s good to be King” line and I thought if were King for a day I would ban all political ads from the broadcast media (with apologies to AXS tv). All ads would have to be in print and would have to be delivered to homes by mail. (Hey, that might help bail out the USPS). No newspaper or magazine ads, just the written word where voters could see what you propose (or not) and make a decision on the basis of something rational. Oh, I would also do away with the vapid appearances we call “debates” They are really useless.
    Tears a go I worked on a relatives campaign for office in Detroit. I remember being out every night going to meetings of voters where the candidate could explain his platform and answer questions. It was remarkable.
    I know it will never happen just like we apparently will never get a budget from this or the next Congress, but I can dream, can’t I ??

    Comment by pope1944 -

  20. hey mark nice column. just noting that you made a typo when you said “there audience is far…”

    Comment by Evan Welch (@MrEvanWelch) -

  21. Say what you want about Fox News, I’m glad they exist. Without them, we wouldn’t have heard from the father of Tyrone Woods. A Navy SEAL who displayed more courage in an afternoon than a thousand politicians could muster up in a lifetime. When I see ONE other network cover that story I’ll be shocked.

    Comment by wisconsincarry (@wisconsincarry) -

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  23. Hi mark I am a new to your blog; I must confess I am a republican to the core and always voted that way. A week ago was watching a documentary on PBS on doth candidates and after compering personality’s and their lives achievement’s I voted for Obama any man who fought his way to the top from nothing and all adds against him deserves my support, now I hope he gets the right kind of experienced talent around him to get the job done for us…MikeG

    Comment by mike gutrugianios (@greekinventor) -

  24. Pingback: Mark Cuban flunks grammar but has a winning analysis of the 2012 Presidential Election | Gramlee Blog

  25. If you watched MSNBC, you would see that the more liberal shows don’t brand as much as they tell the truth. They consistently said that they didn’t know who would win the election. If you want to describe a network, then watch it.

    Comment by trp2011 -

  26. So you are saying the reverse sicology that networks used brought out the vote,I don’t see that.
    Romney needed to do one thing to win and that was be truthful with his own convictions and not play to the Crowd . Team work Game Plan sucked . They just could not stick to the Plan . They change Jesery’s to many times . The Bench was no help, too may LIES. The Propaganda was see through,Wake up Republican”s stick to the well being of all , pay your fare share. Get off the Soap Box and work it out .Abolish IRS go , with something like the 999 and everybody will be taxed the same where was that , it almost won it for the Pizza maker. Look to our kids future

    Comment by Landing Orange Beach Landing -

    • Landing Orange Beach Landing…

      Don’t you think that the reason Romney didn’t connect better with more of main street is that he just isn’t one of them? There were many issues that Romney could have taken on that would have blown away main street.

      Obama screwed up the mortgage modification program big time. However, the republicans simply want to use Obama screw ups as a reason to STOP those programs. Not once did I hear Romney say he would have just done a better job when it came to renewable energy grants or home mortgage modification opportunities.

      Can anyone picture Romney standing up and saying he is outraged that Obama used government funds to set up mortgage refinance programs that required americans to default on their mortgage before the banks would review their application, and that that default meant the banks could start foreclosure proceedings.

      Romney made most of his money by hiring the right people to do the financial dirty work, profit by job elimination and offshoring other business. Obama made his name by accessing government funds and non profits and using their funds to garner favor with his future followers.

      Neither path is really the kind of path that actually connects with main street, but Obama’s path is definitely closer.

      Comment by swarmthebanks -

  27. In the old days, back when we all had daily newspapers, three networks and no internet, the mainstream media tried to report all sides. At least they pretended to try. Today, folks are attracted to bias like magnets to metal. So if you’re already conservative, you know where to find those who agree with you. Same with liberals. Whatever happened to thinking for yourself?

    Comment by Larry Lane -

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  29. I don’t have time to read all the replies . . . so someone may have said it already, but let’s not forget that Fox and MSNBC answer to a higher god than either Romney or Obama . . . their network bosses and advertisers. Meaning, in my opinion, they were–and are–more invested in keeping the cliff hanger hanging than admitting Romney was toast weeks before the election. Keep those eyeballs glued to the TV! They’re thinking story, not reality. As you say, watching those networks is a lesson in branding, and not a place to find any news. Great article. Thanks.

    Comment by Camilla Denton Becket -

  30. Mr.Cuban, Did you see my call of Apple Stock and in the others in the Tech sector, I told ya it was a wrap, still sinking, and Gold will start to trend higher, twitter name is @BryanDeal1

    Comment by Bryan Deal (@BryanDeal1) -

  31. Pingback: Mark Cuban: Fox News Should Watch Dancing With the Stars | Sam Kim's Kickass Internet Marketing Blog

  32. David Gregory and Chuck Todd were doing all the selling (branding) of Obama on NBC so MSNBC didn’t have to do it. Over and Over they showed how Obama had it wrapped up with their analysis and visual electoral map of the US

    Comment by Brian Charles (@BrianLCharles) -

  33. You missed the Fox News commentator saying the country is getting more “broown.” It is all about skin color isn’t it.

    It all about marketing = playing to our brains weaknesses. Which we pay time, money and attention to get.

    Comment by Brain For Business -

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  35. i don’t care what anyone says … i know what caused obama’s election.

    obama told everyone … even independents that the economy was getting better. they saw the unemployment rate down and stock market up, they believed him.

    at the same time the so called “niagara falls economy created by bush” was being repaired with a small cork and a lot of bailouts

    at the same time of this wonderful recovery …. food stamp recipients sky rocketed from under 22 million to 47 million in 4 years. free cell phone users went from 6 million users to 15 million users.

    welfare recipients not so much, only up 40% because that’s direct cash money and much harder to quality … but still 40% in 4 years … under and improved economy????

    these are assistance programs … reserved and to be used when times get worst … not when they get better.

    obama won by 325,000 votes in the battle ground states from where he would have lost … these are 10’s of millions of potential votes for obama.

    america as whole is now an entitlement state and resembles nothing from the day we both left high school in search of success.

    so answer me this … had food stamps, welfare and cell phones decreased equally with unemployment rate … would that POS be in office?

    you and i know exactly what’s wrong with this country … and it has absolutely nothing to do with polls … and media… that’s just companies selling fluff to make more money.

    Comment by Dion Cini -

  36. To dailypuma – Actually I was referring to the decades-long successful strategy by the Republican party using social issues to get out the vote against the rights of gays or anyone the party leaders said wasn’t Christian enough, or American enough. This time the tables were turned, and folks got out to vote for gay rights rather than against, and for abortion rights rather than against them. Whatever side you’re on, I’m just pointing out the older strategy isn’t working as well as the newer. With regard to your comments on voter suppression, this election cycle, the voter suppression was met with an equal or greater get-out-the-vote movement. Personally, I’m glad. Voter suppression and any suppression of rights is disgusting. These days, with social networking and fact-checking in real time, the old suppression tactics and lies about it don’t work as well. Yay!

    Comment by kellyaatkins -

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  40. Right on Mark- I channel surf to get different slants, but Fox was over the top so many times it was outrageous.

    2 examples stand out. Fox commentators blasted Gov. Christe of NJ unmercifully when he met with President Obama at one of the devastaton sites of hurricane Sandy at the Jersey shore. They accused him of “Kissing the Presidents ass” when he shook hands with the President and met with victims with the President’s arm around his shoulder. Christie stated that he spoke to the Presdent 5 times in 3 days regarding thr Feds response to the crisis.The Fox people were very upset.

    At approximately11 PM EST on election night the networks declared President Obama the winner in Ohio. I switched to Fox just as they too called President Obama he winner in Ohio. THe 2 anchors a man and a women (sorry I don’t remember their names) went ballistic How could they call President Obama the winner with only 81% of the vote in. The female anchor took off for the inner sanctum where these calls are made with a camera following her every step. When she reached that room there were several men at computers and 2 standing ready to greet her. She wanted them to change their call. They calmly explained the technical reasons for their call, but she remained unconvinced.

    Comment by Don Ptalis (@donptalis) -

    • Don, I recall Sheppard Smith upset that Romney was taking so long to give his concession speech. Fox seemed rather focused on moving forward in a way in which their message more closely matched the voters, that the party was being run too forcefully by the neocons and that the moderates had been tossed under the bus.


      The implication by TRP 2011 that MSNBC does not brand makes me fume. MSNBC branded Gay Marriage, Union pensions and Voter ID in a way that made it seem like there was only one position to take. All three issues had a clear opposing viewpoint that did not have to involve religion or class warfare, but MSNBC only focused on those opposing viewpoints.

      When a news channel frames the opposing viewpoint, it is important to realize they may not be framing the best opposing viewpoint, usually its the opposing viewpoint that they can defeat rather than the most intellectual one out there.

      Comment by dailypuma -

  41. I understand what Mark is saying – and agree that it was a factor. Being fed up with both parties, I was not going to vote at all, for the first time in my life. However, watching the news on different channels, I was afraid it was going to be too close. So I did vote. Not so much For one man, and his Party – as Against the other. If I had only watched Fox, I may have thought it wasn’t so important.

    Comment by KT Banks -

  42. Mark, while I agree with most of what you’ve said, I believe your conclusions are erroneous, based on what you haven’t said. While it is true that Fox news is the highest rated cable news station, that still dwarfs in comparison to any National News heard on one of the networks on a daily basis. You yourself have admitted to a media bias prevalent in what you’ve stated above, and that carries across all media.

    Most of today’s electorate doesn’t even watch TV, as they get their ‘news’ from places like The Onion, Jon Stewart, or Stephen Colbert. There are several million that get their infotainment(a word I despise, btw) from the ‘net exclusively, and have eschewed traditional TV viewing altogether.

    If advertising on the ‘net is your ground game as you state, then social media networks will rule the day. Furthermore, independents decided this election, something your post doesn’t truly discuss.

    There’s more, but that’s for possibly a post of my own on a site that I write for. Thanks for the vent space.

    Comment by Matches Malone -

  43. What’s your concrete evidence that there’s no life on Mars? Art Bell (or more accuractely — his guests) could have been right. =)

    Comment by Mark Robertson (@manifestinvest) -

  44. The difference today (vs. 100 years ago) is the lack of pretense in the messaging. Fox News and MSNBC (Drudge, Huffington) don’t throw out ideas and assume you will pick up on the message. Instead, they flat out tell you what is right and what is wrong. They tell you what smart people know and what, instead, dumb people know. They tell you what Patriots think and conversely, what evil traitors think and do.

    In the end, this model has proven successful, which means it isn’t going anywhere. Don’t blame the networks for creating a product people want and enjoy. Blame the people.

    But I’m with Mark. I watch all of them. Keeps me honest with myself.

    Comment by Tommy Galloway (@tommygtwo) -

    • Tommy, Fox is a 24 hour network, so even if the nightly news draws much bigger audiences, the 24 hour Fox News machine is still just as powerful if not more.

      Otherwise, MSNBC would be completely irrelevant if we followed through with your claim. But even MSNBC, and their miniscule 100,000 to 300,000 viewers per half hour, over the course of 24 hours, still adds up.

      Comment by dailypuma -

  45. Interesting. When branding comes face-to-face with reality… All that “noise” is sporting and sparring. Fun to watch – but best not to hang your hat on it.
    I’ve found the real question is – can you stay focused on your own mission while the drama plays out around you? 🙂

    Comment by Melinda Augustina (@powerhungryfilm) -

  46. I agree with you… Now that he has been reelected what should he do?… He has basically been on vacation for the past 4 years. In my eyes he is just going to be on a 4 year farewell tour.

    Justin Wall
    Internet Sales Director
    Vandergriff Honda
    Direct: 817-299-2187
    Fax: 817-299-2146

    Comment by Wall, Justin -

  47. The above is all a well-constructed hypothesis, but it doesn’t account for the truth . . . at least the truth as Nate Silver always saw it. Obama was always ahead where it counted, in the Electoral College standings, given his front-runner status in most or all of the swing states. In effect, Obama was always on an easier path to 270, whereas Romney’s path was always convoluted and obstructed by things like . . . voters. It’s hard to believe that Fox News kept conservative voters at home, particularly given some of the vitriol from the conservative right of Republican Party aimed at Obama.

    Comment by mom2kidsdog -

  48. “Marketing” and “branding” did not use to be the purview of (any) news agency.. ever. Earlier generations identified the marketing and branding of “news” by the word “propoganda”… and there used to be a clear distinction between the two. Our modern culture has morphed “marketed news” into acceptability by audiences across our nation, via wide technological accessibiity— and I think as a society we are much the lesser for that. Josef Goebbels was the master of the “big lie” .. tell big lies, and keep repeating them and by their very repetition people will accept it as truth…and so it will be true. It is increasingly impossible to discern the “truth” as it is relentlessy spun and branded by each respective “side”. What is most disturbing to me is that we have raised a generation of people who do not seem to comprehend they are being “spun” .. or played. After all, they can’t LIE on the news, can they? Uh… BONJOUR!

    Comment by SMARTePLANS -

  49. Your a great guy Mark… but, Hogwash… the pig stinks and if you wallow in the mud with him you stink too. Not sure why so many watch Fox but I can imagine all do not watch in support of the Fair and Balanced reporting. Romney lost because he decided to be a party to their polarizing brand… “Muslim” “Nazi” “The Other” “Communist” “Socialist” “Hate America” “Wants to destroy America” “Fraud” “Not a Christian” “A member of Al-Qaeda” “Taking our Guns Away”… this list is extensive. To ignore their Brand is offensive and it will propel opposition to show up and show out!

    While it is disgusting to me, I want them to continue down this path because I believe if they say anything else it will be a bigger lie as they would campaign to the middle “compassionate conservatism” then get elected to carry out their anti-abortion, anti-equal rights, anti-government, suppress the vote, anti-poor, anti-Black/Hispanic/gay/women agenda and finally pro-good-ole-boy brand.

    Yes we are changing as a Nation. No I don’t want the Republicans to realize it. Finally, I am openly waiting for the day that Texas turns blue… looking forward to 2014. Please Republicans do not work with this “Barack Hussein Obama guy.” Don’t stop your music.. you must focus on TRUE CONSERVATISM… The Tea Party needs to focus on these neo conservatives within their ranks and “take America back from these socialist.” Republicans need to do a penetrating investigation into our anti-American political leaders.

    Comment by Earl Johnson -

  50. it’s kind of funny because I thought the exact opposite was going to happen. I was watching the fivethirtyeight blog and I thought Obama supporters were going to not vote because Nate Silver was projecting an 80% chance of an Obama win.

    Comment by Matt (@mrbusche) -

  51. Very good points but I think it’s easier to say the media is heavily bias and will do anything to create drama and grab viewers attention. Still don’t understand why news can’t just be news and be boring. I like boring news. Bring back boring news! Its beyond me why anyone watches these news stations anymore. I for the most part do not watch any major news and I try to consume news via the net. Really have to filter the bad and the good news but its better then watching pure BS on TV.

    That being said, its true… they do exactly what you say. Why can’t this change?

    Comment by Alan Pinnt (@apinnt) -

    • Alan, you stated…”Very good points but I think it’s easier to say the media is heavily biased and will do anything to create drama and grab viewers attention.” end quote.

      But I think that is exactly what Mark is stating.

      I personally think that media polarization has expanded dramatically over the past five years.

      I think George Soros amplified the polarization between both parties back in 2007 when his money was the catalyst for MSNBC demanding Hillary Clinton withdraw from the race back in February of 2008!

      Democrat caucus contest results in republican leaning states with voting rules that entirely favored Obama’s younger voters over Hillary Clinton more middle aged, head of household voters were used by MSNBC to create hype that Obama had “won” something like 12 democrat primary races in a row.

      Something like 6 to 8 of those consecutive victories were the non representational, questionably run caucus victories in republican leaning states. Obama’s margin of victory in the democrat caucus contests in republican leaning states was 2 to 1 even though polling taken just a couple of days before those caucus contests showed Hillary Clinton was either leading or tied with Obama.

      Hillary Clinton was more popular than Obama in the swing state primaries. Florida and Michigan were disqualified for moving up their voting dates even though Illinois moved up their voting date 8 weeks to the beginning of February 2008. This move gamed the republican leaning state caucus contests that immediately followed the Illinois vote. Freezing Michigan and Florida’s primary votes for moving up their voting date while allowing Illinois’s primary vote to count even though they moved up their voting date gave Obama the delegate lead just before those poorly devised democrat caucus contests.

      Donna Brazile led chants of racism if the super delegates were used by Hillary Clinton to win the democrat nomination when she was leading. But when Obama cleverly gamed the voting system in early February and took the lead as a result, Brazile’s demand became that the super-delegates should vote for the leader or that would be considered racism!

      So super delegates who voted for Hillary Clinton when she was leading were labeled racist by Brazile, and if those same super delegates then did not vote for Obama once he took the lead after Illinois, were also branded racist by Brazile!

      The media even MADE UP A PHRASE, “Presumptive Nominee” in an effort to force Hillary Clinton out of the race. 2008 appeared to mark the first time that higher ups from the democrat party were absolutely uninterested in who was the most popular candidate and were more interested in getting their own person in as soon as possible, before all the democrat voters had voted.

      There would be a lot less polarization if George Soros had not infiltrated the democrat party and used Huffington Post and MSNBC as his media lynch pins.

      So if we want to unpolarize the U.S., a NEW MEDIA NETWORK that is MODERATE should come into play. Suddenly, we would find issues like pension reform, voter ID, and gay marriage are not actually divisive issues, but issues that can be intelligently discussed to create bonds rather than disgust and polarization.

      Comment by dailypuma -

  52. * fivethirtyeight blog (not fivethirtyblog as I say above) is the best poll analyzer.

    Comment by kellyaatkins -

  53. Great point about the bottom 2 theory! Though, the Republican surrogates went with a strategy that does sometimes work, ie, rally the base by claiming things are better than they are. It simply failed this time. – Watch PBS for news, not branding. Nate Silver on the fivethirtyblog is the best poll numbers analyzer. Regarding your point about getting out the social issues vote: it was only a matter of time equal rights became more popular than suppression of rights.

    Comment by kellyaatkins -

    • Kelly, you said…”Regarding your point about getting out the social issues vote: it was only a matter of time equal rights became more popular than suppression of rights.”

      I think this was media spin. It’s not voter suppression to require a picture ID card. Doing it at the last minute is not right either, but that might have been because of media manipulation trying to paint the voter ID issue as racist.

      It’s much more tough love than racism, as once the voter ID card is attained by a person, it makes their lives so much easier in dealing with the government on a myriad of levels.

      The republicans should have been THANKED by the media for insisting on Voter ID for those voting instead of being accused of racism.

      Comment by dailypuma -

  54. This really wasn’t a close election in the modern sense. Obama winning the Popular Vote by 2.5 points is quite a margin in and of itself, but the tipping point state was Colorado which Obama won by 4.7 points (Obama could have spotted Romney 4.6 points nationally and lost FL, OH, and VA yet still won the election). This means that for the theory that the election being decided came down to motivation among the *most* highly-motivated subset of the population would have had to make a massive difference in voting not just among Fox News viewers but their social graphs as well. It is just as likely that the air of inevitability increased voter participation because people love being on the winning team.

    More interesting, perhaps, is the phenomenon of echo chambers and their ability to produce massively incorrect consensus within the chamber.

    It would have been somewhat interesting to see Romney win the popular vote and still lose the election (a fairly plausible scenario two weeks ago). Maybe Texas could have been motivated to pass the National Popular Vote and finally have your votes count for something.

    Comment by Eric Valpey -

    • Interesting point Eric about the vote totals. On the other hand, if you study the actual individual precinct victories, Romney probably won a ton more precincts over the entire country than Obama did.

      In Ohio, Romney won 70 precincts, Obama 17, and in many of the Romney precinct victories, his margin of victory increased from four years ago when McCain was the candidate..

      Comment by dailypuma -

  55. Totally agree with your observations Mr. Cuban.

    By the way, Current TV is for sale, has a built in pay per viewer base as well. Please, buy it, and turn it into a moderate news channel that actually explores issues on a deeper level than polarizing each issue to the extreme left or right.

    And if you’re really good, try and get the channel placement re-aligned with the other Cable news networks. You don’t even have to be 24 hours either. Sell regional based slide show ads like they have in the movie theaters from midnight to 6pm, then go with 3 hours of programming a night, repeat the three hours slot, then go to the slide show ads for the next 18 hours.

    Please don’t hire Keith Olbermann, the guy sold out his country when he forced Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton on democrats in 2008. And I’m saying that having once been a HUGE Keith Olbermann fan.

    Comment by dailypuma -

  56. Yes Obama’s campaign appeared to have focused on his diverse base and making sure they knew they needed to get out and vote while making it easy for them to do so. From what I understand, Obama’s campaign did not focus on the independent swing vote, which apparently Romney did. It made sense to make sure the groups you do well in, get out and vote. Romney did not seem to be able to take advantage of the diversity of his own base, including the Evangelicals. He apparently focused on the unknown swing voters, which did not determine the election anyway.
    It will be a bit before it is clear what happened in this election, but two things seem apparent. Obama’s campaign team appeared to out campaign Romney’s, getting out early and often (even during the Republican primaries) and targeting the correct voter base. Along with targeting the correct voter base, comes the reality that simply carrying the middle aged white male vote, may no longer be enough to win a national election in this country. Again, I think there are a lot of things to look at in this election and some things are not clear yet.
    In regards to Fox News and Art Bell and how they, “market their news” to their viewing customer as part of a sound business strategy. While this is a great “entertainment” business strategy (just ask Rush Limbaugh and his loyal follwers), is this really the place you want to go to get the facts to make sound decisions on? When politics comes down to what sells, which of course it often does, then we have identified one of the huge problems this country faces, living in a sort of delusional thinking because we want to agree with what we hear and makes us feel better. This type of thinking is out of touch, something you pointed out with both Fox News and Romney and his followers.
    One could also consider Fox News, (which now often touts itself as unbiased and fair, apparently feeling some criticism for being just the opposite) irresponsbile for calling itself a news agency when it as you said, markets its news to its listeners. I am surprised you go there or even pay attention to it for anything but for its opinions (which are still useful and not always wrong, but why should you have to weed through so much crap to get to them?).
    I loved Art Bell, but I didn’t go there for facts about science, it was fun to do so. Unfortunatley, not everyone sees through Fox News’s or Rush’s entertainment ploys that profit off of peoples opinions while giving nothing substantial in return. In fact these profit motives often just feed deeper divisions in this country while at the same time allowing a “feel good” candidate, like Sarah Palin to come dangerously close to being the vice president (not to mention John McCain as president, a man who apparently had his own problems with the theories of economics and finding a substantive running mate).
    Its ironic as a business man and an entreprenuer, that, not unlike finding a consulting company that doesn’t have a vested interest in selling you something, we are often better off getting our information or data from a non-profit source, even news from a source like NPR.
    As someone once said, “You cannot make a part the whole,” you can however, follow it back to the whole. The sum of many parts seems to have won this election, not a narrow focus on just a few.

    Comment by suttonsbaydoug -

  57. Its not fair to compare Fox News to MSNBC past the surface level. They both lean towards their party. The difference is MSNBC actually use facts. They were right when predicting the winner because they used…. facts.

    Comment by Dwann Brown -

  58. It runs deeper than FNC. Without question, there is a slight bit of merit to your position, but there is more at work here. I’ve been on tv and putting people on tv for more than 25 years. From Generals to Presidents to A-List Stars to Music Giants and some of the world’s biggest entertainment/social events, I’ve seen quite a bit. Espesh the behind-the-scenes dealings. How a small grass-fire of thought or rumour, if you will, turns into a wildfire with a gust of “hot wind”.
    Think of the polls as your small grass fire. The gust of “hot wind” provided by the insanely incompetent ‘pundits’ on the networks. I won’t go into here, but I covered it in a post last night ( ) Just suffice to say you should never listen to anything coming out of the mouth of George Will, Dick (0 for every prediction) Morris and many others.
    Mark, it all comes down to arithmetic. Arithmetic, minus hot win, equals numbers of truth. Polls and pundits numbers of persuasion which, at best, are wrong more than 50% of the time or worse odds than if you just flipped a coin.
    The only guy to really listen to and read is Nate Silver. Picked EVERY SINGLE STATE CORRECTLY LAST NIGHT AND EVERY SENATE RACE, but one.
    In 2008?
    49 of 50 states. Every single race.
    Yep. It’s ARITHMETIC. And Nate Silver’s genius in probabilities and ability to completely snuff out bias. Check out his website, . He’s the guy who developed PECOTA, a system for forecasting the performance and career development of Major League Baseball players. Ever hear of Moneyball?
    Poke around a bit, maybe even read his excellent book “The Signal and the Noise: Why Some Predictions Fails and Others Don’t” and you’ll realize (and laugh) when you see all these old school pundits on tv.
    So, Mark, you are right in the sense that the inability of FNC pundits and anchors to realize the red flags of the polls, or just not want to acknowledge them, did wrap up Mitt Romney in a false-sense of security blanket and his backers as well.
    That and the Romney campaign’s total #campaignFail in the social media world.
    Romney “out tweeted” by Obama 8-1, as one example.
    Also, Paul Ryan didn’t add anything to the ticket that wasn’t already there.
    BTW, in an effort of full-disclosure, I’m not a Repub or Dem, I’m an issue/candidate voter.

    Comment by Tony Potts -

  59. Best quote of the election for me was from a pollster (forgive me, i forget the name) who said, “When you tell conservatives that the polls aren’t in their favor they want to kill you. When you tell liberals that the numbers aren’t going their way they want to kill themselves.” I loved that quote because I think it points out two things relevant to our society today and also your post.

    One, the echo chamber of the right wing media is dense. I think your friend Bill Maher explains it best with his ‘dispatch from the bubble’ segment. (love it when you are on his show by the way). It seems to me that between Fox, talk radio, and political blogs the same information is passed around regardless of facts. The more important thing, as you pointed out, is the branding and usual negative connotations to be imparted on the left. This has left the right in some strange spots over the last few years when facts meet rhetoric. Most notably during the Romney’s “get the transcript Candy” moment. This is also shown, as you again point out, in the overall shock in last night’s results. I’m not saying that the left isn’t full of people who take their marching orders from MSNBC and HuffPo but as you said, nobody does it like Fox.

    Secondly, and I could be COMPLETELY off on this, but I always assume Fox has these huge numbers on important nights because of two things. One, although compared to Fox all other news outlets do look left leaning, the overall narrative that the media is biased is overplayed. Sure, there are liberal new outlets, but fox has positioned themselves not just as an alternative to those select few but as a alternative to ALL of media. This opens them up to a huge audience who would love to hear that their sh*t doesn’t stink for a couple of hours a night, especially on debate nights. The flip side of that, which also brings me to the second reason, is that people on the left have this uncontrollable need to talk about Fox, complain about fox, point out where Fox is wrong, all the while never acknowledging that to get ammo for these arguments you have to WATCH fox. The only advantage to this is that people on the left, myself and many of my friends, find ourselves with two narratives to at least rattle around in our brains, even if it is by accident.

    Anyway, my two cents. I don’t know if you saw this but Maddow, who I think you would enjoy debating with for an hour (make that happen), summed it up better than i ever could. Check it out if you get a chance.

    oh and….Go Lakers (sorry)

    Comment by Jonesy (@JerseyBoyNLA) -

  60. Gotta hand it to ya. First thing I’ve heard that makes sense all day.

    The problem with all these Limbaugh wannabes is that the conservative message gets confused and diluted according to each idiots desire to coral a certain market segment. That is a big problem that all conservative candidates must deal with on a daily basis. Romney’s message was drowned out my the din of the load mouth opinion guys.

    The left on the other hand was doggedly unified and on script – never deviating from the precisely crafted talking point of the day (thank API). Limbaugh pointed it out every day while failing to realize the power of the technique.

    BTW Hannity is a moron (no not a Mormon) and the right needs to stop listening to him. He spends all day discussing the oppositions point of view and why it’s bad instead of the conservative point of view and why it’s good. And then he has this aggravating habit of cutting interesting people off when they are making a cogent argument. I can’t listen to him. I learned a long time ago that you NEVER discuss your competitors product. PERIOD!! The man is just stupid!! Often, I believe he is a shill for the left. Today he said “Get over it!” after 365 x 4 day’s of pumping the “Stop Obama Express” I damn near put my fist through the radio!

    Comment by Bill LaJoie -

  61. Mark your my favorite and I hope you read this but you started off with “I have to be honest” you shouldn’t have to say that because you should always be honest (which you are) right?

    Comment by Richart Ruddie -

  62. Fox news is the only network reporting on the Benghazi attack. All the networks or mainstream media have swept it under the rug. Obama should not get a free pass on the disaster in Benghazi. It was sad to see the father of one of the Navy Seals that was killed being interviewed by Fox (Huckabee and Geraldo) and talking about the coldness he received from both Obama and H. Clinton and lack of answers. I felt this should have been more at the forefront in the election not Obama walking around in NJ with Christi after the storm. I feel we will never know the cover up by the Obama administration on the Benghazi attack and why the Ambassador was not given more back up and security when he asked for it and why Obama went on all the other networks & shows and the UN and said it was because of the Islamic video of which as we know now was not. I bet the families of the 4 that were killed in Benghazi were not celebrating the re-election of Obama. I hope Fox does not let this die since mainstream media will not cover it. This is a travesty. While we may not agree on the election coverage of Fox they are the only ones still covering Benghazi – give them credit for that.

    Comment by Reid Medical Massage (@ReidProMassage) -

  63. Well said bro, peeps always root for the underdog. And if Fox was as smart as they think they are, they would have played that card and we may have a different president right now.

    I’m predicting for 2014 we will see the first female president.

    Comment by matthewneer -

  64. I think you’re absolutely correct on this, Mark. I have lots of Republican friends and they were all dead certain Romney would win, that all the polls were skewed, that anyone who supports Obama is an idiot or a deadbeat.

    I think this election shows that having Fox News on the Conservative side is a liability — not an asset. Take the 47 percent remarks by Romney as evidence. Fox News had several analysts insist he stand by those remarks, and so he delayed by days or weeks any real walk back from them. And in the end, that was a pretty big mistake. He should have retracted them and apologized immediately, but having the cheerleaders at Fox back him helped make him and his advisers pause and reconsider.

    Comment by Stan R. Mitchell -

  65. As a non American who spends a lot of time in the US i have to say that fox news seem to aim for the lowest common denominator. I wonder if these people even vote. Perhaps that’s the issue the target audience couldnt be bothered to vote as they know their lives wont change 1 bit no matter who is in charge.

    Comment by sgmann -

  66. I enjoy your analyses, Mark, even when you’re wrong. In this case, you are right on one thing and suspect on another.

    You’re right in your analysis and conclusions about Fox News (Rupert Murdoch’s political issues machine). They have massive influence in partnership with the GOP.

    But your point about Fox News influence suggests a foregone conclusion (that Romney won the election) specifically impacted voter turnout for the GOP. You haven’t supported that case with any evidence. And it would be difficult to do so without pretending every Republican lives or dies by whatever is happening on Fox News. That’s a myopic and stereotypical portrait of Republicans. I think you’re smarter than that. So, I put this blog post in my entertainment file. It is. As usual.

    But this post lacks conclusive evidence … and a believable conclusion.

    Comment by Mike Green (@amikegreen2) -

  67. This is a very interesting analysis of the dynamics of branding and impact on the final result. From an African perspective, we have very limited access to Fox News and its affiliates, MSNBC is widely watched over here. I read widely and Fox is definitely on my list of websites to visit when I need a look at the other side. I really get the impression that a lot of the supporters of President Obama, were going to make sure he got back in office regardless of pit-falls in his administration, I feel that the Republican party needs a shake up that will bring them back in the running with the new age voter base (Kind of like the Labour Party in the UK, they need to get back to their roots with…….”labour” unions). Old notions of a country club, save American sovereignty and American ideals, just alienate new age voters who see the world as it is; a global village. You want to belong to something, people might not like, but will appreciate it.President Obama created that and I believe that’s why he is in for another term.

    Comment by Bashir (@Inqubo1) -

  68. Romney was too soft after knocking Obama silly in the first debate. He put in on cruise control and played it safe. Christie also did what he had to for the state but killed Romney’s momentum. It’s not necessarily that Rep. lost votes from Christie / Romney one weekend love affair, but they got shocked by their pitbull partying with the enemy. Romney also had a chance to stand up for what he believes in when he conceded but instead he went soft again. I am a life long Republican from the Michael J Fox on Family Ties days and we have lost our way.

    Comment by Ace Lee (@ActionEmperor) -

  69. Truth exists in the area between opposing viewpoints. Zealots choose to only see their side as Truth and skew reports to the contrary to either support their vision of truth or lie.

    Unfortunately, too many zealots exist in society. No longer is it the norm to just “Be”. Bias has given rise to hatred. Hate destroys.

    Working together doesn’t mean only the opposing viewpoint must change. True compromises must be made to heal the country and reduce political zealots.

    Comment by Bruce Faulkner (@Quartercat) -

  70. Just one comment about Fox Mark. Brit Hume was very temperate in his remarks (though he’s not an anchor anymore), and actually called it for Obama the Sunday before the election. Brit is conservative personally, but calls it straight.

    Comment by rachpreludeind -

  71. Love the Art Bell comparison. That’s funny, I was just listening to an old Art Bell show and he briefly mentioned you! (As being involved in setting up the internet stream of his radio show back in the ’90s.)

    Comment by Chris Crosby (@chriscrosby) -

  72. Not sure if I buy your argument, Mark. I believe that most people watch Fox News because they’re so right wing bias, that it is watched for entertainment value. I think people tune in just to see how ridiculous their reporting can become. I don’t believe that anyone took their prediction of a Romney victory seriously enough to rally Obama supporters to go out and vote.

    Comment by Pramit Bose -

  73. I don’t think Fox News made the difference. The results were exactly what the polls predicted if you followed . Obama probably did have a better ground game, but he wont pretty convincingly. He would’ve reached 271 even if he received 2% less in every state, and that’s a confortable margin.

    Comment by Balazs Rau -

  74. Interesting take on things and this could be a contributing factor to Romney losing the election. The real problem is his campaign had many things wrong with it from his running mate to not changing with the times and keeping a “country club” campaign. Obama caters to the “new” America and republicans are behind (WAY BEHIND) the times. I didn’t vote for Obama but I see why so many did.

    Comment by itshouldbeillegal -

  75. Great post!

    Comment by Kelsey Albrecht -

  76. Excellent analysis of the coverage, Mark. While I don’t doubt what you’re saying is truthful, I’d like to push the idea past the hypothesis stage. I wonder if you know of individuals who didn’t actually vote for Romney based on the Fox News coverage, especially those voters in key states like Ohio, Virginia, and Florida.

    Comment by Mike Xidis -

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