Responding to a claim by Phil Donahue that his MSNBC talk show was canceled 'because of my political posture; my stance against the war" and that "Our ratings entitled us to be nurtured not canceled," Michael M. Bates retorted in a May 11 NewsBusters post: "Just needed a little nurturing, heh, Phil? How much nurturing is necessary when a show draws, as Donahue's did on at least one occasion, a puny 0.1 rating, an indicator that only 137,000 households are watching?" Bates added that the claim is "part of the truth, Donahue-style."
Bates doesn't say where he got his ratings statistic from. But the Associated Press reported that at the time his show was canceled, Donahue averaged 446,000 viewers, up 28 percent from a year eariler, which would seem to support Donahue's claim.
In other words, it's the truth, NewsBusters style.