Univision’s Rose-Colored Glasses?

Univision reported on Monday that its presidential candidate forum was seen by some 4.6 million viewers, which would easily eclipse English-language debates on ABC, CNN, Fox News Channel and MSNBC.

There was one problem. According to Variety’s Michael Learmonth, it turns out this was just an estimate of how many people ducked in and out during the 90-minute debate.

When other cable networks report debate ratings, they report total average viewership, so to compare apples to apples, Univision’s Nielsen number was 2.1 million — not bad, but in line with other debates on the various news channels.

Meanwhile, Katie Couric’s trip to Iraq delivered lackluster ratings — tying records for ratings lows. “We never expected it to do well in the ratings and it didn’t,” CBS News President Sean McManus told the AP. “We knew that this was a long-term commitment to Katie and the show and we really felt it was important to establish our reporting there.”

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