Height of reality TV: news channels see surge
On a day like this, people could not have enough of news. A look at television viewership data on the news channels shows that there was a significant surge in news viewership on Wednesday, reports Anita Sharan.tv Updated: Nov 27, 2008 21:38 IST
On a day like this, people could not have enough of news. Non-stop news turned the highest form of reality TV on Mumbai’s night of terror.
Notably, as per convention, a high viewership was not used to sell advertisements for the better part of the day.
“Whenever there are big tragedies being covered in news, news channels discontinue their ad breaks, even though ad slots may have been committed earlier,” said Nandini Dias, chief operating officer of media buying agency Lodestar Universal.
Significantly, viewers surfed restlessly between news channels, enlarging the pie and intensifying the war of footage, soundbites and live feeds from sweaty, excited reporters and cameramen– some of whom videographed terrorists on the run.
A look at television viewership data on the news channels shows that there was a significant surge in news viewership on Wednesday.
The viewership gainers were mostly Hindi news channels, in comparison with their average in news viewings over four Wednesdays. India TV was the biggest gainer with a 32 per cent surge in viewership, followed by Star News at 29 per cent, Aaj Tak at 25 per cent and Zee News at three per cent.
“New viewership got added to news channels and some of those already watching news shifted to other news channels to catch the news on the Mumbai terror attacks,” said Joseph Eapen, director (research), Audience Measurement & Analytics Ltd., which provides TV viewership data under the aMap name.
The time between 10.30 p.m and 12.30 a.m got the highest spikes across all channels that gained viewership, tapering off thereafter though remaining higher till 1.30 a.m compared to their day’s lowest viewership readings. For almost all news channels, November 26 ratings for news viewing before 10.30 pm were fairly consistent with the average of the previous four Wednesdays.