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Fox Season To Date Leads In 18-49 and 18-34 Grow; Cuts Into CBS' 25-54 Lead

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March 18th, 2010

Season To Date Ratings

  • Fox is certain to win (and expanded its this week in) both the adults 18-49 and adults 18-34 ratings races this season. They might challenge CBS for the adults 25-54 race by the end of the season.
  • CBS is certain to win the average viewership race.
  • NBC's hold on third place across the board is likely to be threatened by ABC before the end of the season, but it will be close.

The xCBS and xNBC values in the Season To Date chart show the season to date ratings minus a few non-annual events for CBS and NBC.

  • The xCBS number is the CBS season to date ratings average minus the entire Super Bowl 2010 week.
  • The xNBC number is the NBC season to date ratings average minus the 3 weeks with any Winter Olympics telecasts.

Unfortunately, with the data I get, I can do no better than exclude entire weeks. Those numbers should not be considered "official", and there are always errors possible. They're meant to help answer the question "How would CBS (or NBC) be doing without those non-annual events".

Ratings Increase / Decrease: 2009-10 Season vs. 2008-9 Season

  • Overall, the top 4 broadcast networks are flat vs. last season in adults 18-49, but if you remove NBC's 3 weeks of Winter Olympics ratings, they're down 2%.
  • CBS is up across the board vs. last season, due to boost they received during Super Bowl week. Without it, they'd be down across the board in the adult demo ratings.
  • NBC, even with the Winter Olympics boost, is down vs. last year in adults 18-49 and 18-34.
  • ABC is down vs. last season across the board between 4-8%
  • Fox continues up  across the board vs. last season, but its spring has not done as relatively well as its fall, and its margins vs. last year are shrinking.
  • CW looks up nicely in some demos vs. last season, but that's deceptive, see below.

The xCBS and xNBC values in the Season To Season change chart show the season to date ratings changes minus a few non-annual events for CBS and NBC.

  • The xCBS number is the CBS season to season ratings change minus the entire Super Bowl 2010 week.
  • The xNBC number is the NBC season to season ratings change minus all 3 weeks that included any Winter Olympics this year, and the week that included the Super Bowl 2009 last year.

Unfortunately, with the data I get, I can do no better than exclude entire weeks. Those numbers should not be considered "official", and there are always errors possible. They're meant to help answer the question "How would CBS (or NBC) be doing without those non-annual events". Note that I lack the data to do those adjusted comparisons for average viewership.

In looking at the CW's ratings averages note that they would be about 20% ahead of last season across the board if they'd just kept their Monday-Friday numbers steady because of the automatic boost to their ratings averages just by dumping Sunday nights. Compared to last season, the CW's Monday-Friday ratings averages are down, but don't be surprised if the CW's crack PR troops can pull one over on the credulous TV media.

You can see past week's broadcast network primetime season to date average TV ratings results here.

Each rating point is a percentage of the US TV population in that demographic group and equals: 2.90 million viewers, 1.32 million adults 18-49, 0.68 million adults 18-34 and 1.24 million adults 25-54.

Note that the chart includes RATINGS not VIEWERSHIP as was typical in our weekly network ratings posts prior to July, 2009.

Nielsen TV Ratings Data: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

 
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