Monday, August 05, 2013

GCI throws weight behind new TV ratings analysis

Gannett Broadcasting just announced that it's supporting television trade association TVB's position on local Live Plus Same Day ratings data. TVB found in a recent analysis that those ratings most closely approximates today's national C3 data, and should be the minimum ratings standard for local TV viewing.

"As consumers engage in more and more time-shifted viewing, we believe it is essential that our industry has the most reliable and accurate local viewing data," said division president Dave Lougee. "Live Plus Same Day ratings clearly provide the closest match to national C3 ratings on the local level. This is an important first step in acknowledging the value of time-shifted audiences to advertisers on local television stations. Live-Only ratings are obsolete in today's viewing environment."

Ratings giant Nielsen launched the C3 ratings system in 2007. It refers to the ratings for average commercial minutes in live programming, plus three days of digital video recorder playback. By the end of last year, some TV executives wanted to move yet again, to C7 -- ratings for live plus seven days, with Les Moonves of CBS making the claim C7 made ratings increase by 30%.

Gannett's endorsement carries particular weight as the company nearly doubles its industry presence with the pending $2.2 billion purchase of Belo's 20 television statements. That deal is set to close by the end of this year.

TVB is the not-for-profit trade association of nation’s commercial broadcast TV industry.

Related: Nielsen releases C3 ratings data in 2009.


  1. Interesting that Gannett is expanding it's presence in broadcast television at the same time time Warner Cable and Direct TV are making a stand to not pay for showing them.

  2. Generally, the cable/satellite vs content provider outbreaks tend to be more about "groups" of channels. A company (say Disney) might own several cable channels in addition to its broadcast network. Here's a quick quiz: ESPN is basic cable's most expensive channel. How much a month does Disney charge a cable company for JUST ESPN?

    Disney would prefer that ALL its channels (Disney Channel, ABC Family, ESPN, etc) be carried by your cable provider. It's a delicious "sauce for the goose". Just as your cable company won't sell you channels ala carte, neither will content providers sell that way to cable.

    So there's not much worry about Gannett's local channels not making it to satellite or cable. Most local channels either want a nominal fee or carriage of secondary and tertiary digital channels.

    As of last summer, Disney was getting over $4.50 a month per sub for ESPN. Below is a link to cable channel prices as of 2009. They're higher now.

  3. I have lost several local broadcast channels for a time while they have negotiated price. Usually only around 1 dollar per sub per month for broadcast NBC, ABC, FOX, or CBS. The cable company keeps them from charging more but still raises my rates. What happens if the local NBC or CBS broadcast affiliate wants an increase to 2.00 per sub? The cable company says good bye until they come back down and renew the contract for 1.00 again. Gannett will have the same problem if they try to increase revenue by charging more to satellite and cable providers. CBS is going through this now in large markets. Don't think they won't do this to the stations owned by Gannett too.


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