Tag Archives: ratings

NBC’s “Pity” Olympics

NBC’s ratings for this Olympics have been in free fall. Even great performances by American athletes, and the amazing performance by Usain Bolt couldn’t drag them out of the doldrums. Now admittedly, a number of the Olympic sports just don’t convert to television, and those that do have been expanded to the point of pointlessness. I mean when you have 50, 100, 200, 400 meter events in each of the swim forms freestyle, breaststroke, butterfly, and backstroke – not to forget the individual medley, it is not hard to see why swimmers garner so many medals. It is sort of like expanding the shot-put to use 1, 3, 5,8, 10, 20 lb balls thrown backwards, forwards, and to each side. Many Olympic athletes compete in sports where there is only one opportunity to win a medal. Some of the “bloated” sports offer 10 or more opportunities…

Which devalues the accomplishment, and audience interest.

I mean, imagine the Decathlon, where a gold medal is not only awarded for the best cumulative score in the 10 events…But for each and every one of the 10 events themselves done backwards, forwards….

It’s getting like a Montessori Kindergarten where every kid gets a ribbon for “Best Effort”.

I am not advocating dropping some of the more obscure sports – the Olympics committee does that anyway by some inscrutable formula.

NBC’s coverage is the second issue. Their incessant “Human interest” stories often pivot on some personal tragedy in the athletes life. “My dog died, so I am inspired to beat the world!” It got so bad in the 2012 Olympics, it was hard to watch at all. I mean “I’m really sorry about your dog, dude…But I really didn’t turn on the TV to watch your sob story about Rover.”

How about some useful information without the fluff? How about figuring out a way to make those lesser sports interesting?

NBC knows who to blame for poor Olympics ratings — millennials and their “Facebook or Snapchat bubbles”

Not even Usain Bolt’s race for a 8th career gold medal could salvage the network’s ratings

After the Super Bowl, the Summer Olympics have long been considered the safest bet in television, which is why NBC and its parent company, Comcast, paid $12 billion for exclusive broadcast rights to them through 2032.

The problem for NBC is that broadcast rights don’t produce the same revenue streams they once did, especially not among that most coveted 18-49-year-old demographic. As Bloomberg’s Gerry Smith noted, NBCUniversal’s CEO Steve Burke joked in June that his Olympic nightmare would be to “wake up someday and the ratings are down 20 percent.”

“If that happens,” he added, “my prediction would be that millennials had been in a Facebook bubble or a Snapchat bubble and the Olympics have come, and they didn’t know it.” Ratings are only down 17 percent from the London Olympics, so his nightmare scenario is technically incomplete — but that’s the equivalent of claiming a dream in which your teeth are falling out while standing naked before a classroom doesn’t qualify as a “nightmare” because you’re not also being chased.

NBC foresaw this possibility, and charged up to 50 higher rates to online advertisers — but the problem isn’t necessarily the platform, as 98 percent of those watching the Olympics are doing so on traditional television.

The problem NBC faces is a general disinterest among members of the non-traditional television-watching demographic for sporting spectacles. This apathy could be because of the rise of alternative viewing options — Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu have each grown substantially in the years since the London games — or it could simply be that the nature of NBC’s coverage doesn’t resonate with the younger generation.

Every athlete is introduced according to the conventions of programming that doesn’t appeal to millennials — a “Dateline”-esque account of triumph in the inner city, for example, or a heartwarming “Hallmark Hall of Fame” tale about losing a parent at a young age. It’s difficult to capture an audience by selling it a product it’s already indicated an unwillingness to buy.

In the end, what cannot be doubted, only lamented, is that on the night Usain Bolt — widely considered to be one of the last “must-see” draws of the 2016 games — won his 8th career gold medal, NBC’s rating among those between 18 and 49 dipped to 7.0.

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Posted by on August 21, 2016 in American Greed


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Restaurant Designers Get a Clue – Cutting Noise Levels

There is a very good restaurant near where I used to have an office.  Excellent food, great service, and an attentive staff. Only been there twice, despite the convenience.

Why? The noise level is through the roof. You can’t have a conversation in normal tones sitting across the table with your group. The two times I’ve been there were both at someone else’s invitation. I’ve nixxed going there over a dozen times either for business or social meetings. Doesn’t much matter about the food or decor…

If you can’t have a normal conversation.

Designers have gotten into a modern style which, while attractive – does nothing to enhance the customer’s experience. If you are 20 something, and single – shouting over 300 other people shouting may be attractive. After all, a high level of noise can provide its own anonymity.

But if you are not in the “meat market” – sometimes the noise level can be quite painful, especially to baby-boomers who are now paying the price in hearing loss from loud music in their youth. And like it or not – its the baby boomers and businessmen who are dropping $200-300+ on a table for lunch or dinner.

A lot of times when travelling and just looking for a dinner outside of the Hotel kitchen, I will do a walk by. Typically there are a cluster of eateries near a major hotel. That walk by has grown to not only checking the menus and daily specials – but a quick look inside to assess the noise experience, since until only recently have a few of the restaurant ratings services begun to address the issue – despite the fact that it is the second leading complaint by diners after poor service. My feeling is that a place that doesn’t give a damn about diner comfort – is eventually (sooner rather than later) going to fail on the food quality issue.

High metal ceiling, hard floor surface – no sound absorption make meals a diner nightmare due to high ambient noise levels.

Noisy restaurants: Taking the din out of dinner

You can count on the hippest restaurants to have dazzling menus, stylish servers and an attractive clientele.

And increasingly, there’s a featured side dish: noise.

As restaurateurs strive to attract a younger crowd, they’ve ditched the pile carpets, soft tablecloths and plush velvet booths for crowded communal tables, clattering open kitchens and pounding Rihanna music. And it’s all amplified by cavernous ceilings, spartan walls and bare floors.

The hustle and bustle is credited with bringing in more business, but it’s also creating a backlash.

Kristina Pivnyuk, 21, said she was hoping for an evening of fine food and good conversation when she ate recently with friends at Bottega Louie in downtown Los Angeles. She got only the meal.

“It kind of ruined the experience for me,” the Cal State Northridge student said, recalling the loud music and diners shouting to be heard over the din.

Restaurant raters have taken note.

Yelp has begun listing noise levels atop its ratings. OpenTable, a reservations service, allows reviewers to rate restaurants as “quiet,” “moderate” or “energetic.” Several national restaurant reviewers now factor sonic quality into their reports. The Rundown LA, which sends email blasts on local activities, provides noise ratings when it reviews eateries. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on June 9, 2012 in The Post-Racial Life


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Hey Cantor! Know When to Fold ‘Em!

Some 71% of Americans disapprove of Congressional Republicans’ handling of the debt crisis, while just 21% support the GOP’s efforts, a CBS News poll finds. Congressional Democrats fare better, but only slightly so: 58% disapprove of their work on the issue; 31% approve. President Obama gets the best poll numbers of all the players, but his 48% disapproval figure remains larger than his approval rating, at 43%.

71% Disapprove of GOP’s Debt Efforts


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Glenn Beck Dumped By NYC Radio Station WOR

Perhaps the beginning of the end…

Glenn Beck dropped by New York’s WOR radio station over poor ratings, replaced by Mike Gallagher

Glenn Beck may be one of the hottest talk show hosts in the country, but he apparently left New York‘s WOR cold.

WOR (710 AM), one of the city’s two biggest talk radio stations, said this morning it is dropping Beck’s syndicated show as of Jan. 17 and replacing him with a familiar New York name: Mike Gallagher.

“The reason is ratings,” said WOR program director Scott Lakefield. “Somewhat to our surprise, the show wasn’t getting what we wanted.”

Beck, whose style is sometimes off-center and who hosted a well-publicized national rally in D.C. last year, has been seen as one of the rising conservative radio and TV talk stars.

What was that line from the Frank Sinatra Song?

If you can’t make it there, you can’t make it anywhere?


Posted by on January 5, 2011 in Domestic terrorism, Stupid Tea Bagger Tricks


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The Sno’ Ho’ Show Suffers Audience Drop

It appears that the Sno’ Ho’ Show on TLC, has a major audience drop down to it’s basic viewer demographic…

Horny white men over 60.

Sarah Palin's Alaska...Rooting for the Bear to Have White Meat for Dinner


Sarah Palin’s Alaska Ratings Plummet

It seems mostly old people are watching Sarah Palin’s Alaska. Ratings for the show’s second installment fell 40%, CBS News reports. While the premiere set a record for TLC with 5 million viewers, only 3 million came back for more. Of those, only 885,000 were in the advertiser-friendly 18-49 age bracket. The median age of viewers was 57, which is 15 years older than TLC’s average.

But TLC says it anticipated the drop, since the show was going up against the NFL’s Sunday night games and the American Music Awards. “We are very happy with the ongoing strength of Sarah Palin’s Alaska,” said a network spokesman, noting thatConan saw a similar drop off.

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Posted by on November 24, 2010 in Domestic terrorism


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Obama Ahead With Muslims, Jews, Catholics, and Agnostics

Interesting Poll numbers show that President Obama’s approval among Muslims, Jews, and agnostics and non-religious is still very high – while polling Mormons is low.

I would think his polling among Protestants (43%) breaks on what type of Church.

24% Approval among Mormons? What are you guys smoking?

The amazing part of all of this is… Remember the Reverend Jeremiah Wright controversy during the election?

Indeed, here is an article from one of the “faithful” arguing that Obama isn’t a Christian… Because he isn’t their kind of christian.

U.S. Muslims support Obama

More than three-quarters of U.S. Muslims support President Obama, according to a new Gallup Poll.

The president’s support levels among religious groups: Muslims, 78 percent; Jews, 64 percent; Catholics, 50 percent, and Protestants, 43 percent.

Obama scored the lowest approval ratings among Mormons, 24 percent. He received 63 percent support from the non-religious, atheists and agnostics.

A recent Pew poll found that one in five Americans mistakenly believe Obama is a Muslim. He is a Protestant Christian.

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Posted by on September 2, 2010 in Domestic terrorism


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