Fox News and its board members may be staying quiet about the recent controversies surrounding Tucker Carlson, but the advertisements airing during his show tell an interesting story.
After Carlson told his “Tucker Carlson Tonight” viewers that white supremacy is “actually not a real problem in America” and that the suggestion it is a problem is “a hoax” spread by the mainstream media, his commercial breaks on Thursday and Friday have featured as few as 13 and 11 paid ads, respectively. As of last year, he had about 36 paid ads per show.
Media Matters for America’s Jordan Uhl noted in an infographic, shown below, that Friday’s show carried six lengthy public service announcements.
In the last year, the types and volume of advertisements on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” have drastically shifted. Dozens of advertisers abandoned Carlson’s prime-time show beginning in December 2018, when he told America that immigrants were making the country “dirtier.” More advertisers left in March when Media Matters discovered Carlson’s racist and white supremacist rhetoric on a radio show between 2006 and 2011.
While Carlson previously had a wide variety of paid advertisers invested in him specifically, his commercial breaks over the last year have increasingly included “house ads” for Fox News, Fox Nation, Fox television and Fox Sports programming.
The Hollywood Reporter analyzed Carlson’s advertisers after the radio show comments were uncovered and found that in the nine programs that aired after it, “ads for Fox programming have made up 34.8 percent of the show’s advertising spots in that period, compared to just 3.7 percent in the period leading up to his December comment about immigration.”
As of the end of March, Carlson’s ad load per show fell from about 36 to about 18, and it’s remained pretty stagnant since then. A typical show features anywhere from 18 to 21 ads.
However, that number has decreased again in the last two weeks.
The sudden uptick in Fox house ads comes on the heels of Carlson announcing he would be taking some time off for a vacation until Aug. 19.
Despite the planned vacation, advertisers have been releasing statements that they are cutting ties ― marking the third mass exodus of brands in less than a year.
This week, Long John Silver’s said it will no longer advertise on Fox News as a whole, and Nestlé, HelloFresh and Stein Mart confirmed that they are no longer running ads on Carlson’s show.
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