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September 3, 2015


A.C. Nielsen, Jr. of Nielsen Ratings Fame, Dies Aged 92

by Catherine Lawson, posted Oct 5th 2011 7:30AM
A.C. Nielsen, Jr.It's been announced that Arthur Charles Nielsen, Jr. of the eponymous ratings firm, has died at the age of 92. He had been suffering from Parkinson's disease.

After serving in the Army Corps. of Engineers during World War II, Nielsen joined his father's research firm, A.C. Nielsen, in 1945. He stayed with the firm for the rest of his adult life, becoming President in 1957 and Chairman in 1975.

Nielsen ratings are now synonymous with TV ratings, thanks largely to his use of cutting-edge technology -- he had the first general-purpose computer, the Univac, built back in 1948 -- which revolutionized the nascent business of market research.

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Light, Escapist Shows Rise to the Head of the Freshman Class of 2009-10

by Gary Susman, posted Apr 30th 2010 3:30PM
When the going gets tough, the tough veg out in front of the tube.

Variety's picks for the top new series of the 2009-10 season suggest that, in these tough times, viewers' favorite new shows were generally the light, escapist, family-friendly ones. Most were comedies (including 'Community,' 'Glee,' and 'Modern Family'), but even the dramas were low-key affairs ('Parenthood,' the strangely reassuring 'Good Wife,' the fantasy 'Vampire Diaries').

Of the four new dramas on the list, only one was a crime procedural ('NCIS: Los Angeles'). Even the one reality show on the list was one that didn't involve competition and elimination ('Undercover Boss').

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'Justified' Rocks Ratings with Premiere Episode

by Danny Gallagher, posted Mar 18th 2010 8:30PM
Timothy Olyphant of FX's The premiere episode of FX's 'Justified' was a lot of fun to watch and apparently, I wasn't the only one who thought so.

Tuesday's episode, titled "Fire in the Hole" after the Elmore Leonard novella upon which the series is based, scored 4.2 million sets of eyeballs, the network's second highest rating since the premiere of 'The Shield.'

Naturally, the show scored more older than younger viewers, but my gut tells me that could change once word spreads about the type of show it is and the quality it can produce. Sure it's a pseudo-western, but it has a very updated and edgy feel. It's fun for the whole family, if your family is one of those weird groups that lets their kids watch anything whether it's an edgy Western drama or late night Cinemax.

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Nielsen to Track PBS Ratings

by Elizabeth Chan, posted Dec 23rd 2009 10:40AM
Elmo star of 'Sesame Street'PBS is getting in on the ratings game.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the network has announced that it will be signing up with Nielsen Ratings, providing a weekly -- but not daily -- outlook on its programs. This will be a first for the network, which launched back in 1970.

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Viewers at 10PM Would Rather Watch DVR Shows Than 'Jay Leno' -- or Anything Else

by Gary Susman, posted Nov 30th 2009 2:10PM
The Jay Leno Show premiereDon't blame Jay Leno. NBC's risky experiment, gutting its 10PM drama slate to air Leno's low-budget variety hour five nights a week, may not have paid off in ratings, and the move may have made NBC an easy target for scorn and ridicule. But Nielsen ratings numbers suggest that no one could have slowed the slide during the final hour of primetime.

According to the Associated Press, the 10PM hour has become the time when viewers catch up with the shows on their DVR queues. So viewership of first-run shows at 10PM is down at all of the big three broadcast networks.

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Jay Leno's ratings suck less

by Danny Gallagher, posted Nov 28th 2009 11:02AM
Jay LenoPeople who hoped and prayed that The Jay Leno Show would become a big failure had one less reason to go on living this week.

It seems that the show has hit stopped a recent "ratings slide." The last 11 episodes either maintained or improved their adult demographic ratings after a long slide since September.

Even the holidays didn't dampen the show's ratings. The show before Thanksgiving was his most watched since October and was the only show in his timeslot that didn't see a decline in the ratings.

Does this mean Leno will pull himself out of the muck or just sink deeper into the bottomless swamp that is NBC?

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Americans watching TV at record levels

by Danny Gallagher, posted Nov 10th 2009 7:33PM
If you're watching television right now, congratulations. You are part of a new world record.

The Nielsen Company announced that TV viewing for the 2008-09 season reached a new high in average watching time. Now the average American spends four hours and 49 minutes every day in front of the idiot box and the average household spends more than eight hours a day watching television. ("God bless America, land where we loaf, staring down from, our favorite futon, all day and night at the light of HBO")

However, this doesn't mean everyone to celebrating. In fact, the big four networks (five if you count the CW) actually saw a decline in viewers because we have so many other choices now between cable and the Internet. Do you any of you actually watch that much television?

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How Much TV Do You Watch a Day?

by Scott Harris, posted Nov 10th 2009 4:30PM
According to a new Nielsen study, Americans are wasting over 19 hours a day doing something other than watching television.

Admittedly we here at AOL TV are little biased towards the television side of things, but all joking aside, the latest figures from Nielsen are a bit of a surprise considering the amount of time people are now also spending online and pursuing alternate forms of entertainment such as video games.

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NBC scores with Inside the Obama White House

by Allison Waldman, posted Jun 4th 2009 10:10AM
Obama burgers
If Jay Leno isn't the answer for NBC prime time, perhaps the network should think about booking President Obama. NBC News devoted two hours, on Tuesday and Wednesday night, for Inside the Obama White House and the ratings were strong. Better than the insipid I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here, which acted as a lead-in. Of course the season finale of Law & Order: SVU on Tuesday didn't hurt the news production.

Having watched the two hours, NBC should sign the president ASAP. There's always the curiosity factor when a viewer is being given access behind the scenes, and that's what Inside the Obama White House did. It was a look at the real West Wing, which reminded me a lot of the fictional, Aaron Sorkin West Wing creation, and that was quite cool. President Obama still fascinates me, and it's well past 100 days.

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Now, the most important part of the Inauguration...the ratings

by Richard Keller, posted Jan 22nd 2009 2:33PM

CNN and MSNBC were kings of Inauguration DayThe celebrations may be over in Washington D.C. as President Barack Obama gets to work, but there's probably still some partying over at the networks as the ratings for the Inaugural Day coverage have begun to come in. Things look good for a number of networks as they continued their upward trend of viewership that began during election coverage.

Overall, nearly 38 million of viewers in the U.S. tuned into one of the 17 broadcast and cable networks to watch the inauguration events. While not the 41.8 million that watched Ronald Reagan's inauguration in 1981, it is the most viewers since that time. Breaking it down further, NBC, ABC and CNN led the way with the most viewers between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm. Even further than that, NBC had the most viewers between 11:00 and the end of Obama's speech with a total of 11.5 million. In the world of the Internet, MSNBC was king with a total of 16.4 million unique visitors throughout the day.

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All Allison wants for Festivus

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 18th 2008 11:30AM
P daisiesOh, Festivus, Oh, Festivus, the holiday for TV fans. How exciting that once a year we can close our eyes, click our heels and make our wishes for the magical ways television can be made better in the year to come. Still, there are more than a few changes that I think need to be made to make TV better ... not to say that it's bad. It just that everything can be better.

This is a great opportunity to get a little Scrooge-y and vent about what I want to see corrected/improved/altered in TV in 2009. Is it wrong that I hope the bigwigs at the networks and cable companies are surfing the net and take my grievances to heart? Is it wrong that I still believe they care about what viewers think? Yeah, probably, but here's my wish list anyway:

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NBC really, really believes in Chuck - in 3-D

by Allison Waldman, posted Nov 10th 2008 3:26PM
Chuck smileHere at TV Squad, we often bemoan the quick cancellation of a show that deserves a chance to evolve. We've chronicled the demise of a fan favorite like Moonlight, and empathized with our readers. There have been times when we've agreed that networks spend so much time and talent developing a show that it seems a down-right shame when the plug is pulled after a half-dozen episodes.

So, knowing all that, we have to acknowledge when a network does something right. NBC is bending over backwards to see to it that Chuck becomes a ratings hit, to go along with its already established and growing fan base. Creator Josh Schwartz expressed his thanks to NBC for the post- Super Bowl Chuck episode. The Super Bowl is Sunday, February 1.

"They were doing this big promotion inside of the Super Bowl and handing out 150 million 3-D glasses, so we are the beneficiaries of that. ...Chuck seemed like the best fit for that type of thing."

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Gary Unmarried getting a Monday night tryout

by Allison Waldman, posted Oct 24th 2008 10:01AM
Jay MCBS has a killer Monday night lineup. The sitcom block from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., followed by the very popular CSI: Miami consistently delivers in the Nielsens. The only vulnerable, flexible and soft spot is 9:30, after Two and a Half Men, before Horatio Cane and company.

The network apparently isn't sure that Worst Week has earned that coveted spot -- even though it's doing well enough in the ratings -- or else they're wondering what they have in Gary Unmarried.

Next Monday, Gary Unmarried will get a shot at 9:30. The pilot episode of Gary Unmarried -- which was pretty good -- will be rerun in that cushy timeslot with the idea of getting more people to sample it.

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VP debate scores blockbuster ratings

by Allison Waldman, posted Oct 4th 2008 8:05AM
Biden Palin Conventional wisdom says that vice presidents don't matter much when it comes time to vote, that people ultimately make their choice based on who's running for president. However, when it comes to debates, VEEPs are the main event.

The Nielsen numbers are in for last night's debate between Vice Presidential candidates Joe Biden and Sarah Palin and they're huge -- 69.9 million viewers watched the VEEP debate. That's a whopping 17.5 million more viewers than Barack Obama and John McCain drew for their first debate last Friday night.

Why were so many more people tuned in for Biden-Palin? There are a few reasons, starting with the curiosity about Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

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Palin speech nearly equals Obama's -- in ratings

by Allison Waldman, posted Sep 4th 2008 7:01PM
Palin speechThe Republicans have been crying foul about how the media has been unfairly going after vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin. Right or wrong, all that media attention, plus the curiosity about who this little known Alaska governor is, fueled last night's broadcast of her acceptance speech. The results were predictable. The Palin speech was a Nielsen ratings hit, drawing 37.2 million viewers. That's nearly as many viewers as Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama scored a week ago at his Denver stadium event.

As I said, the big number was hardly a surprise, especially if you are at all media savvy. On the net, the name Sarah Palin has become the top draw on every search engine. She's presently a bigger celebrity -- yes, sorry, but that's the word that fits -- than Paris Hilton, Miley Cyrus, Madonna or Barack Obama. She's on the cover of every supermarket magazine this week, as well as the news magazines.

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