Fox News host Tucker Carlson announced on July 13 that he was going take a sudden a week-long vacation after his lead writer, Blake Neff, resigned after being caught for posting racist statements on the website AutoAdmit, which was uncovered by CNN.
Matt Gertz, a senior fellow at Media Matters, told Democracy Now how Fox News depends on racism to draw its viewers, but then loses advertisers who do not want to be associated with racism:
Fox News has a business model problem. There are two ways Fox makes money. One is off of its viewers. They get a big audience, and then they can sell advertising against that audience. The way that they attract the audience is with bigoted commentary. It’s with red-meat Republican talking points. It’s by creating a space for the hard-right movement in this country.
But advertisers don’t really like that, because, inevitably, it leads to blowups like this. It gets them in trouble, and then they start fleeing. Tucker Carlson’s show at this point, its advertiser blocks are a wasteland. It’s promos for other Fox content and then advertisements for MyPillow, which is a product run by a Republican businessman.
And so, Fox is leaving a lot of money on the table because of this. And I think, in the long run, it’s going to be quite damaging to them. They don’t really have a way out of this. They keep getting caught in this cycle of one scandal after another.