In an amusing article about the Jackson Memorial-a-palooza by WaPo's Lisa de Moraes comes some historical media frenzy numbers that point to a 30+ million average viewer total for today's "event".
At least 16 television networks plan live coverage of the Jackson memorial. At press time, the list included ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, Fox News Channel, CNN, CNN Headline News, MSNBC, TV One, MTV, VH1, VH1 Classic, VH1Soul, TV Guide Channel, E!, Univision and we're sure we're missing a few. Think Princess Di times 2.
Overwhelmed by the sheer number of Jackson death-march viewing options? We're here to help.
For starters, given the historic ratings problems at most of the broadcast networks this summer, the timing of Jackson's death has been their salvation, ratings-wise. They have high hopes for a large viewership today. FYI, when the Michael Jackson child-abuse trial verdict was read on June 13, 2005, about 31 million were watching it on TV. (Princess Di's funeral was watched by about 33 million on a Saturday in September '97 across eight networks.)