According to a recent Reuters release, the vast majority of weekday TV shows in broadcast syndication suffered national household ratings declines compared to the previous year as shown in the recently concluded Nielsen May ratings sweep.
Off-network sitcoms generally posted weak performances. Court and talk shows were mostly down, with four veteran programs dipping by more than 20%. Relationship and game shows were mixed. The top magazine shows were among those to hold up the best.
Researchers reported that households using televisions were down 2% Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., compared to the same time frame last year, contributing to syndicated shows rough going in May. In addition, the report says that cable's competitive draw on audiences was stronger this year, as cable penetration is up in the United States over last year.
Nielsen Ratings includes stats on individual shows, a few of which grew slightly in audience.