One of the delicious media stories of the week stems from a study by the Annenberg Public Policy Center, which found that viewers of Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert were better informed on campaign finance in the 2012 presidential election cycle than were viewers of various “real” media outlets. The study provides vindication for the much-publicized 2011 stunt in which Colbert himself established a super PAC and interviewed a prominent campaign-finance lawyer on air about all the wonderful things he could do with the organization.

This peculiar approach to explanatory journalism worked, according to the Annenberg study: “It’s the first study actually showing that Colbert is doing a better job than other news sources at teaching people about campaign financing,” said Bruce W. Hardy, the study’s lead author. “Consistently, we found that Colbert did better than every other news source we included in our model.”

And consistently, Colbert has fun with media-related news. Last night, the host exulted in the report’s findings, exclaiming, “That’s right: I did a better job of informing the public about campaign finance reform than every other news organization, and CNN.”

Then came the twist: “Nation, this is an historic moment for the report. I have been ranked the most informative of all American news organizations. And I am incredibly sorry. … Clearly, I must work harder at informing you less.” He then took a bow to the “masters” of television news, grabbing clips from various broadcasters:

“Coming up next on ‘New Day,’ are you ready for a Prince selfie?” (CNN)

“What videos did you forward to all your friends this year?” (MSNBC)

“The baby squirrel, in a cast. Need we say any more?” (Fox News)

“Coming up next right here: What your dog could be doing when you’re not home.” (ABC News)

Colbert noted: “The bar of lowness has been set very high.”

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.