Monday, June 20, 2005

Ratings Frenzy!

Last week, FWMN guest blogger Vince Robinson discussed the most recent local news ratings and how WPTA/WISE spun the results. Now FW Business Weekly's Derrick Gingery weighs in with a detailed account and analysis of the May 2005 sweeps. Here's the most interesting portion:
The ratings appear to show viewers reacted negatively against WPTA after the WISE layoffs.

“Oprah Winfrey,” one of the highest-rated shows in Fort Wayne in any time slot, airs on WPTA just before the 5 p.m. newscast. Oprah received a 10.8 rating, but “21 Alive Newsroom at 5” garnered a 7.8, meaning many viewers changed the channel after Oprah.

WANE showed “Judge Joe” and “Judge Judy” in the hour slot before its 5 p.m. newscast. The shows received a 5.1 rating, but the figure jumped to 9.0 for the WANE 5 p.m. news. During the February ratings period, the same pattern occurred, but the WPTA newscast rating only decreased 0.1 point.

“That surprised us,” [WANE station manager Alan] Riebe said. “We’ve always been working to catch that audience. We simply don’t have the Oprah lead-in.”
UPDATE: MediaWatch (on one of its many blogs) discusses an attempt at tackling the ratings:
JG's Steve Penhollow made a valiant try at explaining the May 2005 Nielsen ratings for the local television stations in Sunday's edition of his paper [6/19, Metro, Page 1C].

But the situation is so convoluted that even the astute Mr. Penhollow was flummoxed by the numbers (and WANE/WPTA spin).

(WANE was Number One overall, but WPTA did well in those demogaphics that advertisers like. WISE33 is a meaningless side-bar at this point. See above.)
Media Note: here's a link to the actual story in question, as [6/19, Metro, Page 1C] doesn't help much. (Apparently they don't read FW Business Weekly or know how to link over there.)



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