Viacom, Disney Struggle With Kids' Ratings

Although Viacom's ratings troubles seem to be focused on their programming issues, other networks have seen declines for kids TV content in looking at different age groups.

MoffettNathanson Research says Viacom has seen a 21% decline among 2-11 viewers over the past year, when looking at Nielsen live program plus seven days of time-shifted viewing from July 2014 to June 2015. In addition, there has been a 23% decline in 12-17 viewers and a 19% decline in 18-34 viewers.

“The continual decline in ratings for Viacom, and the rest of the cable network industry in general, has been nothing short of shocking,” writes Michael Nathanson of MoffettNathanson.

But he also adds that Viacom’s “ratings struggles among the youngest viewers appear more company-specific and reflective of a poor programming slate.”

The report also says that Walt Disney kids networks have been down 10% among 2-11 for the same time frame, the July 2014 to June 2015 period, 8% among 12- to-17-year-olds and 8% among 18- to-34-year-olds.

Only Time Warner, through its Cartoon Network and Adult Swim programming efforts, was able to show gains -- up 17% among 2-11 years-olds. Still, Time Warner was down 12% among teens 12-17 and off 9% among 18-34 viewers.

Viacom has a 26% share of all 2-11 viewers on an industrywide basis; with Walt Disney networks commanding a 33% share (Disney Channel does not air regular TV commercials). After this comes Time Warner -- through its Cartoon Network and Adult Swim programming efforts -- with a 10% share.

MoffettNathanson Research says for July, People Using TV (PUTs) among 2-11 are down 6%; with 12-17 year-olds off 11%; and 18-24, 15% lower. The company says collapse isn’t all from a typical shift in summer TV viewing behavior.

1 comment about "Viacom, Disney Struggle With Kids' Ratings".
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  1. Nicholas Schiavone from Nicholas P. Schiavone, LLC, August 20, 2015 at 9:50 p.m.

    Dear Readers,

    Basically, I carry a brief for no one except those I love and care about.
    I am fortunate to be able to exercise choice in the matter.
    This leads me to say I have been concerned about the health & safety of children for some time.
    My concern has been strengthened by the birth and growth of my own children.  

    So where am going with this?  How are my thoughts connected with the topic raised by Wayne?
    I have essentially one question: How does any reputable and responsible research firm measure the TV tuning and viewing of 2-year olds?  

    For that matter, Why has the "Industry" sought estimates for behavior from (little) people with virtually no ability to manage or maintain cooperation and response?  How does the "Industry" come to terms with assuming consent among those who have yet to reach "the age of reason" and other critical markers of maturity.  If the person in question is too young to vote for persons in political office, why are we taking advantage of them and worse by making them seem to become part of TV Panel Measurement involuntarily?  Can't possibly be good for them!  

    Shame on everyone in this business for engaging in a form of child abuse & dishonesty.   Moreover,  we've lied to ourselves and our clients for so long we forget it's a big old lie!

    The time for a change is long overdue!  The situation is rather frightening when you reflect.

    Forget statistical error.  We've made a serious human error that needs to be corrected NOW!  that is, sooner rather than later.

    Perhaps I've just found a new job.  Keep you posted.  In the meantime, examine what's left of your conscience at this point in this nasty game that we call ... .  (Fill in the blank for yourself.)

    Nicholas P Schiavone
    Chairman of the Holier Than Though Society & A Little Bit Childlike, Not Childish!

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