The median TV age for the 2013-2014 season is now 44.4 years, up 6.5% -- or 3.5 years higher than it was during the 2009-2010 TV season, when it was 41.9.
In 2014, the estimated U.S. population median age was 37.6 -- up 1%, or 0.4 years from the 37.2 years that the 2010 U.S. Census shows. This was 5% higher -- or 1.9 years -- from 35.3 in the 2000 Census.
According to MoffettNathanson Research, who provided the study: “We think the shift in demographic viewing behavior is caused by a combination of factors ranging from lower penetration rates of under 25 year old households to increasing use of time-shifting technologies in most under 55 year old households.”
For the four big English-language broadcast networks, the weighted average age of TV viewers grew 7% to 53.9 from 50.3; for the cable networks, it increased 8% from 37.1 to 40.
Among the big broadcast networks, Fox is still the youngest, at 47.8 years -- up 7% -- in the ratings weighted average age. At the other end of the spectrum, CBS is now at 58.7 years up 6%. ABC and NBC, however, are gaining on CBS -- now with ABC at 56.3 years and NBC 55.9, both up 6% from five years ago.
Oldest cable networks for average viewer age: Fox News, Hallmark, and RFD-TV are now all at 65 years-plus; Fox Business is at 64.9 years; GSN, 63.0 years; Golf Channel, 61.9 years; and CNN, 61.9 years.
Cable networks have aged the most rapidly: BET (8.8 years older); GAC (8.6 years); Mun2 (8.2 years); TVGN (7.9 years); MLB (7.7 years); and Golf Channel (7.1 years).
Some cable networks became younger. Those include FXX, down 6.7 years (it recently transitioned from the Fox Soccer Channel); truTV, 4.1 years younger; AMC, also down 4.1 years.
Interestingly, CNN also became slightly younger -- 1.5 years -- during the 2013-2014 season versus five years ago.