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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Network TV Is Not Dead

This morning I found a fascinating article about network television. For the past few years, people on the Internet have been saying that network television is dying. And their arguments for why network television is dying can be a compelling argument at times. Hell, it was even taught in some of my communications courses that network TV would slowly be phased out. However, this article on shows a different side of the argument.

By pulling up some rough ratings data, the author Dustin Rowles, was able to show that network TV is just as strong now, as it was back in 1999. The key to his argument is the DVR numbers. Once you take into account DVR numbers, network TV is actually doing better now, then it was back in 1999 on certain top 10 shows. I personally believe that DVR and online streaming numbers need to be taken into account when doing ratings. Just because a person isn't watching it live, doesn't mean they shouldn't count.

I also really like that Rowles was forth coming at the beginning of his article and stated that his interpretation wasn't following a certain scientific method or model. In this age where anyone can publish anything online, I feel that it's important to be truthful, and try not to represent yourself as something you are not.

Kudos to this article. Additionally, most of my favorite shows are actually on network TV. I feel that majority of the programming found on cable is either very repetitive, or re-runs of old network TV. Of course there are some exceptions such as AMC and FX.


Matt Maldre said...

I have a blog post in draft simliar to this topic. What it comes down to is... consumers want their content to come to them. Consumers don't go out hunting for content on a daily basis. I'd dare say that 95% of content is consumed by channels where the content comes to the viewer. (as opposed ot the viewer having to go out and hunt something down).

People, on the most part, are lazy. They don't want to have to look around for things to read or watch. They don't want to sit down and have the content come to them.

Network television is one of those channels where the content is easily consumed. Sit down. Turn on tv, watch.

I admire the DVR viewers, because those viewers aren't quite as lazy, because there is some effort involved in setting up a show to be recorded. The DVR for tv is like the RSS reader for websites. The majority of web users will never use RSS readers, but there are great numbers of DVR users. Perhaps RSS readers need to learn from DVR interfaces on what makes the DVR so easy to use.

Peter Kreten said...

Totally agree with you Matt. People want their content delivered to them, and they want it as soon as possible.