Study: Daily Show has More Humor, Less Hype and About the Same Amount of Substance as Network News Shows

But one’s funny: According to a study set to be released next summer by Indiana University, John Stewart’s Daily Show has more humor content, less hype, about the same amount of substantive news and is a hell of a lot funnier than, say, CBS Evening News with Katie Couric. Though I would suppose Couric would score higher on the cuteness factor.

“We’ve been wringing our hands for decades that the networks aren’t doing enough substance in the political coverage, so is it any real surprise that it’s just as substantive?,” Julia R. Fox, assistant professor of telecommunications at Indiana University, said of The Daily Show. “Our findings should allay at least some of the concerns about the growing reliance on this non-traditional source of political information, as it is just as substantive as the source that Americans have relied upon for decades.

“In an absolute sense, we should probably be concerned about both of those sources, because neither one is particularly substantive. It’s a bottom-line industry and ratings-driven. We live in an ‘infotainment’ society, and there certainly are a number of other sources available.”

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