Masked Scheduler's Ratings Smackdown

The questions keep coming in, so here are some Masked answers. First from the inquisitive BS:
"Is there a way ratings can be more inclusive, like putting something in every TV that records what is watched? Nielsen has had a monopoly for a long time. But I think there is no way one Nielsen household accurately represents thousands of viewers."
Au contraire, mon ami. The laws of sampling apply, and you can project viewing based on a representative sample of TV households. I worked in the business for 35 years, and I rarely woke up and questioned the ratings. There is a consistency, and the demographic profile of most shows makes perfect sense.
When I was at NBC I would ask the people who put out the ratings reports to include the term "measurable viewing in the home" because a) it was possible that the home did not report all sets to Nielsen and b) clearly there is more viewing going on outside the home, like in bars and offices. Over the years, Nielsen has tried to measure that viewing. Regarding chips, that is sort of the way that they will be measuring viewing on smartphones and pads.
The technology will always be ahead of the measurement, but no one in the business is throwing up their hands and accepting things as they are. You do need an accepted form of currency.
This one is from GP:
"I'm curious about why there isn't more of a programming partnership between the major networks and the cable networks that are owned by the same corporations. For example, NBC has a tremendous amount of "bubble" reality shows that have been in limbo for a while without being canceled ('The Biggest Loser,' 'I Can Do That,' 'The Sing Off,' 'Last Comic Standing,' 'Running Wild,' 'Better Late Than Never'). Why not move some of these shows to USA?"
There is a reciprocity between networks and the sibling cable channels. Over the years, at FOX, we would ask FX to run episodes of our new series to give them additional exposure. They always cooperated. I offered to run episodes of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" on "Big FOX." Of course, we had to be selective, and they required some editing.
Although we were not related, when Cartoon Network wanted to revive "Family Guy," which is from the FOX TV Studio, I suggested that we air it first on the network before it went to CN. I remember the call from the acquisition guy at CN asking what was the window between the FOX telecast and its debut on Cartoon Network. I told him they could air it the next day. They did, and I don't think it impacted our ratings.
What did happen with the "Family Guy" deal was we all needed to renegotiate the license fee, which is why NBC cable channels don't do original runs of the broadcast network's fallow reality shows. It's one thing to take a repeat after it airs on a network, it's another thing to pay the license fee for the original run.
Send those questions to or tweet me a question @maskedscheduler.

Broadcast primetime live + same-day ratings for Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2017

The numbers for Tuesday:

Time Show Adults 18-49 Rating/Share
Viewers (millions)
8 p.m. America’s Got Talent (NBC) (8-10 p.m.) 2.5/10 13.02
Bachelor in Paradise (ABC) (8-10 p.m.) 1.2/5 4.44
NCIS (CBS) – R 0.7/3 6.87
The Simpsons (FOX) – R 0.5/2 1.45
The Flash (The CW) – R 0.2/1 0.88
8:30 p.m. The Mick (FOX) – R 0.4/2 1.13
9 p.m. Bull (CBS) – R 0.6/2 5.51
Black-ish (ABC) – R 0.6/2 2.09
Family Guy (FOX) – R 0.4/1 1.08
Legends of Tomorrow (The CW) – R 0.2/1 0.77
9:30 p.m. Black-ish (ABC) – R 0.5/2 1.95
The Mick (FOX) – R 0.4/1 1.11
10 p.m. Hollywood Game Night (NBC) 1.1/5 4.64
NCIS: New Orleans (CBS) – R 0.6/3 5.39
Somewhere Between (ABC) 0.4/1 1.90


“America’s Got Talent” dominated Tuesday’s ratings, as it has all summer, but the show hit a seven-week low among adults 18-49.

“AGT” scored a 2.5 rating in the 18-49 demographic, down a tenth of a point from last week and its lowest mark since July 18. “Hollywood Game Night” (1.1) was down 0.2 vs. last week’s fast nationals (it adjusted down to 1.0 in the finals).

“Bachelor in Paradise” also fell a tenth of a point for ABC to 1.2. “Somewhere Between” was even with last week at 0.4.

Network averages:

Adults 18-49 rating/share 2.1/8 0.7/3 0.6/3 0.4/2 0.2/1
Total Viewers (millions) 10.23 2.79 5.92 1.19 0.83


Late-night metered market ratings (adults 18-49, households):

11:35 p.m.

“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”: 0.6/3, 2.0/5

“Jimmy Kimmel Live”: 0.5/3, 1.6/4

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”: 0.4/2, 2.4/6

12:35 a.m.

“Late Night with Seth Meyers”: 0.4/4, 1.2/4

“Nightline”: 0.3/2, 1.0/3

“The Late Late Show with James Corden”: 0.2/2, 1.0/4

: 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.
Fast Affiliate Ratings: These first national ratings are available at approximately 11 a.m. ET the day after telecast. 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. 
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. 
Time Shifted Viewing:
 Program ratings for national sources are produced in three streams of data – Live, Live +Same-Day and Live +7 Day. Time-shifted figures account for incremental viewing that takes place with DVRs. Live+SD includes viewing during the same broadcast day as the original telecast, with a cut-off of 3 a.m. local time when meters transmit daily viewing to Nielsen for processing. Live +7 ratings include  viewing that takes place during the 7 days following a telecast.

Source: The Nielsen Company.

Posted by:Rick Porter

Rick Porter has been covering TV since the days when networks sent screeners on VHS, one of which was a teaser for the first season of "American Idol." He's left-handed, makes a very solid grilled cheese and has been editor of TV by the Numbers since October 2015. He lives in Austin.

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