Did you notice that this summer we had the least-watched week in TV history for the four biggest broadcast networks?
Back in the first week of July, CBS, ABC, NBC and Fox averaged 20.8 million viewers during prime-time, according to Nielsen Media Research.
Obvious stuff - holiday, nice weather sends us outside (thank goodness that is still true!), too many reruns on. But that's been true for a long time.
OK, add in all those cable channels & satellite channels, and video/DVD rentals. Yes, but also pretty old news.
So what is it? It's all the other media sources. It's watching video on the Net (YouTube & such), just surfing the Net (MySpace, Googling everything that interests us), mp3 downloads of music (and more video including some of those TV shows we are not "watching" for the Neilsen ratings). This is not news to many of us who are following this trend. I wrote about some of these reasons on Serendipity 35 before and I'll write about new ones in the upcoming months I'm sure.
The answer to the question of my title - Are you still watching TV? - really depends on who you are. If you are 35+ years old, there's a good chance you are still watching good old TV. Advertisers are going to start to target you more. The younger you are, the more likely it is that you are watching something other than trad TV.
Here's what was on top of the list that week - were you watching? Were your students watching? If not, what were they doing and how can you reach them?
For the week of July 3-9, the top 10 shows, their networks and viewerships:
"America's Got Talent," NBC, 12.03 million;
"So You Think You Can Dance" (Wednesday), Fox, 9.78 million;
"CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" (Thursday, 10 p.m.), CBS, 9.7 million;
I sat and watched part of the U.S. Open this weekend in on Universal and CBS. I wouldn't have watched if it hadn't been available in high definition. It was the first I'd sat in front of the tube all summer. I stopped at the local Blockbuster last week for the first time in 2006. It took me a while to find my membership card. I have a Netflix account, but it's been sitting dormant for a year. I think the reason I've stopped watching DVDs is that they look so bad next to high def. Haven't been to a movie theater in more than a year. Too many interesting things happening online. Is this typical for a 35-year-old male?
what's typical? I'm older but I use my Netflix all the time, quit Blockbuster, have no cable premium channels, spend a LOT of time online, haven't bought HD and don't really care to see each bead of sweat or aging actress' wrinkles.