USA Network Trumps Cable Rivals

Though USA Network lost a bit of ground, it was still able to claim overall victory in total average prime-time viewership among ad-supported cable networks in the second quarter of this year.

USA averaged 2.66 million viewers in prime time for the second quarter 2013. Rival TNT was next -- just behind -- at 2.609 million viewers. USA was down 5% from a year ago; TNT was flat versus second quarter viewers in 2012.

After its big rise of a year ago with a number of well-rated reality shows, History was at 2.0 million, down 20% -- but still good for third place. Fox News, benefitting from a big new cycles that include the Boston Marathon bombings and Oklahoma tornados, was at 1.9 up 6%.

History sister network A+E was up 20% to 1.8 million. TBS was at 1.7 million, up 2%. ESPN hit a bad patch of road, down 33% to 1.36 million. Discovery was steady, up 6% to 1.2 million. Syfy was down 9% to 1.14 million. Lifetime also was up 11% to 1.17 million.

Viacom witnessed a resurgence at Nick at Nite, up a massive 43% to 1.071 million. Another young-skewing programming block, Turner’s Adult Swim up 7% to 1.222 million.

Scripps Networks’ saw both sides of the equation: HGTV was up 9% to 1.252 million. Food Network was down 9% at 1.124 million.

Other top networks saw weak periods: FX was down 6% to 1.243 million. ABC Family was down 14% to 1.025 million.
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