TV networks looking to do away with live+same day ratings

By Kyle Johnson,

Television networks are tired of dealing with live+same day ratings as they feel later reports that account for DVR numbers are more accurate.

"If you were a sports reporter, you wouldn't report on the third inning score," David Poltrack, CBS head research officer said, according to The Hollywood Reporter."You can't do that. We all provide projections. The one thing you can be sure about is our projections is that if one of us starts giving you a lot of bulls---, the others are going to let you know."

The banding together of the networks over reporting numbers that look miserable in comparison to the later, stronger numbers, which often provide a more complete picture of viewers, comes days after FX announced they would no longer report on the early ratings, Deadline reports.

"With the exception of sports, news and live events, Live+Same Day ratings no longer accurately reflect the audience delivery for a scripted entertainment program," FX chief John Landgraf said.

FX's Julie Piepenkotter said that waiting the five days is better. Though while the networks will look to turn away from pouring over the initial ratings, it will be interesting to see if news outlets follow suit, since they are also publicly available through Nielsen.

It's not hard to see why the networks don't like the old way any longer as later ratings reports improved the ratings in the advertiser-important 18-49 demographic by 40 percent among the major four.

Showtime exec Kim Lemon admitted they no longer look at the day-to-day ratings. Their top show Homeland, is only watched live by 32 percent of the overall audience.

image courtesy of Michael Yarish/Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc

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