TV Ratings Tuesday: NBC Wins Election Night

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November 7th, 2012

Adults 18-49: Rating/Share 4.6/10 3.8/8 2.7/6 2.0/4 1.4/3 0.5/1
Adults 18-34: Rating/Share 4.0/10 3.8/8 2.4/6 2.0/5 1.3/3 0.4/1
Total Viewers (million) 12.56 11.15 8.42 4.95 3.525 1.547


 Due to the live nature of last night's election coverage and frequent local election news breaks Fast Affiliate Ratings for Tuesday are approximate and subject to more than the typical adjustment in the finals

NBC was the number one network in adults 18-49 and with total viewers.

FOX's election coverage was even with '08 (2.0), ABC's election coverage earned a 3.8 and was down from last election year's 4.5. CBS's election coverage earned a 2.7, which was up from last election year's 2.3 and NBC earned a 4.6, which was up from last election year's 4.5



Broadcast primetime ratings for Tuesday, November 6, 2012:

Time Net Show 18-49 Rating 18-49 Share Viewers Live+SD (million)
8:00PM NBC 2012 Election Night (8-11PM) 4.6 10 12.56
ABC ABC News Your Voice Your Vote 2012 (8-11PM) 3.8 8 11.15
CBS Campaign 2012: CBS News Coverage of Election Night (8-11PM) 2.7 6 8.42
FOX FOX News Election Special: You Decide 2012 (8-10PM) 2.0 4 4.95
CW Arrow -R 0.6 1 1.81
9:00PM  CW            Emily Owens MD -R 0.4 1 1.28


NOTE: All national ratings are "live plus same day" from Nielsen Media Research unless otherwise indicated.

Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2012 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

You can see TV ratings from other recent Overnight ratings reports here.


Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings, including demographics, are available at approximately 11 AM (ET) the day after telecast, and are released to subscribing customers daily. These data, from the National People Meter sample, are strictly time-period information, based on the normal broadcast network feed, and include all programming on the affiliated stations, sometimes including network programming, sometimes not. The figures may include stations that did not air the entire network feed, as well as local news breaks or cutaways for local coverage or other programming. Fast Affiliate ratings are not as useful for live programs and are likely to differ significantly from the final results, because the data reflect normal broadcast feed patterns. For example, with a World Series game, Fast Affiliate Ratings would include whatever aired from 8-11PM on affiliates in the Pacific Time Zone, following the live football game, but not game coverage that begins at 5PM PT. The same would be true of Presidential debates as well as live award shows and breaking news reports.

Rating: Estimated percentage of the universe of TV households (or other specified group) tuned to a program in the average minute. Ratings are expressed as a percent.

Share (of Audience): The percent of households (or persons) using television who are tuned to a specific program, station or network in a specific area at a specific time. (See also, Rating, which represents tuning or viewing as a percent of the entire population being measured.)

Time Shifted Viewing – Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live+Same Day (Live+SD) and Live+7 Day. Time shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+Same Day (Live+SD) include viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3:00AM local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live+7 Day ratings include incremental viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

For more information see Numbers 101 and Numbers 102.


    One good thing about the election being over is no more political ads! Being in a “swing” state, they were brutal!

    Bring on tonight’s lineup!

  • Vincent

    Emily O. was ugly and boring! Not everyone likes the policy in fact some people have looked Arrow or EO because there was no other choice, unfortunately.

  • Jared

    Those are pretty good repeat numbers for the CW. Who would have thought Arrow and Emily would be so compatible. Anyway hype for Arrow tonight. Definetly my favorite new show of the fall.

  • Joe

    Good for NBC I personally found CNN more entertainment than big 4 not to mention FOX it was catastrophic I have to say was a bit worried in the beginning but now I am so glad Obama won 4 more year America is not lost after all .

  • juliedawn

    Actually those CW numbers may be adjusted down, I believe a lot of their affiliates aired local election coverage instead.
    I’m in Canada but I have 3 CW stations: WPIX from NYC, WGN from Chicago and KTLA from Los Angeles, and they all pre-empted for the election.

  • CBSviewer

    37.08 million viewers it’s not so much isn’t it ?

  • Honey Badger

    @ Amanda Kondolojy @ Bill Gorman @ Robert Seidman on tvbythenumbers.com

    Could we please have a guess the ratings poll for tonight?
    Very interesting stuff tonight

    The Voice on NBC vs. The X Factor on Fox vs. Survivor: Philippines on CBS all new and going against each other

    The Voice on NBC vs. The X Factor on Fox vs. Modern Family on ABC all new and going against each other

  • CP

    I was watching the live Smackdown on SyFy. I guess Vince McMahon wanted to get viewers away from watching his wife lose her second attempt at a senate seat. Arrow seems to be a beast.

  • Alan

    I hope this Emily Owens repeat gives a boost to next week’s episode.

  • Love Me for Me

    I like Stephen Amell , But his character “Oliver” is getting on my nerves .. Like , Seriously.

  • RyanCanada

    smh @Melissa your whats wrong with the world

  • K_Will

    For local matters I was watching ABC, but I was mostly tuned into CNN and The Daily Show when it came on at 11.

  • Michael

    Are you guys reading Donald Turmp’s tweets? He’s such a tool!

  • Jeff R.

    All hail the power of the electoral college ice rink!

  • AppleStinx

    These election night ratings are comparable to the ones 4 years ago, a tad lower, with ABC and NBC trading places. On the cable news side, CNN totally dominated in 2008, let’s see how they do this year. I was stunned at how quickly FNC called the election for Obama last night (that is, before Karl Rove butted in).

  • Nick

    How pathetic was it to see Obama winning the elecion last night? Sad day for Americans even thought the 54 million don’t know it yet.

  • aack

    @37.08 million viewers it’s not so much isn’t it ?

    It will at least double that when the cable numbers come out.

    Bounced around with the coverage last night. A lot of CNN, some wacky Diane Sawyer (if she was always like that, I would watch more news), some local stuff (Mourdock lost…yay) and some Fox news for the Karl Rove meltdown. Then twitter for the craziness that is Trump.

    Hmmmmm, I wonder why the republicans can’t win? Could it possibly be all the crazy people they associate with?

  • Mark2

    NBC was the first to call the election and most of the states.

    I still watched CNN more because of John King and his interactive map. He’s by far the best when it comes to breaking down the electoral vote.

  • Joseph A

    Its off topic related to ratings ,,
    Why is anyone surprised that Romney lost even with Obama being an easy target?
    Many of the voters that embraced Ron Paul , had to reject Mitt Romeny given that he was in the pocket of Big Money , Special Interests, and the Conservative Right.

  • RJ


    How is Melissa “wrong with America” if that is her opinion? In America, we value opinions.

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