The Winners: A weak night. Actual live viewing of the main channels this week is down more than 15%. Viewers have gone to digital, pay TV or not watching.

  1. Seven News (6pm) — 1.088 million

The Losers: Nothing really, it is summer (officially).

News & CA: Nine News and A Current Affair won Sydney and Melbourne. Seven News and Today Tonight won the rest.

  1. Seven News (6pm) — 1.088 million
  2. Nine News (6pm) — 987,000
  3. Today Tonight (Seven) (6.30pm) — 952,000
  4. A Current Affair (Nine) (6.30pm) — 848,000
  5. ABC News (7pm) — 822,000
  6. 7.30 (ABC) (7.30pm) — 618,000 (+24,000 on News 24 Simulcast)
  7. Ten News (5pm) — 613,000
  8. The Project (Ten) (6.30pm) — 552,000
  9. Ten News (6pm) — 358,000
  10. SBS News (6.30pm) — 205,000
  11. Lateline (ABC) (10.35pm) — 197,000
  12. SBS News (9.30pm) — 163,000
  13. Lateline Business (ABC) (11.10pm) — 111,000 (+38,000 on News 24 at 8.30pm)

In the morning:

  1. Sunrise (Seven) (7am) — 420,000
  2. Today (Nine) (7am) — 347,000

The Stats:

  • FTA: Seven (three channels) won with a share of 28.6% from Nine (three) on 27.2%, Ten (three) was on 18.6%, the ABC (four) was on 18.4% and SBS (two) ended on a high 7.2%. Nine leads the week with 28.6% from Seven on 26.8% and Ten on 20.2%.
  • Main Channel: Seven won with a share of 19.1% from Nine on 18.9%, ABC 1 was on 11.3%, Ten was on 10.8% and SBS ONE was on 5.8%. Nine leads the week with 19.6% from Seven on 18.1% and Ten on 12.7%, with ABC 1 on 12.6%.
  • Digital: Eleven won with 5.2% from ABC 2 and 7TWO tied for second with 5.1% each, 7mate was on 4.5%, GO was on 4.4% Gem was on 2.9%, ONE was on 2.7%, SBS TWO was on 1.4%, News 24 was on 1.0% and ABC 3 was on 0.9%. That was ABC 2’s best performance thanks to Queen: Days of Our Lives (a documentary on the rock band) at 9.30pm which averaged 292,000 was the second most watched program on the digital channels last night after Neighbours on Eleven with 316,000. The 10 digital channels had a total FTA share last night of a high 33.2%. 7TWO leads the week with 5.3% from GO on 5.2% and Eleven on 4.7%.

Pay TV: Seven (three channels) won with a share of 22.8% from Nine (three) on 21.7%, pay TV (200-plus channels) was third with 17.7%, Ten (three) was on 14.8%, the ABC (four) was on 14.6% and SBS (two) ended on 5.7%. The 15 FTA channels had a total viewing share last night of 82.2%. The 10 digital channels had a very high share of 25.9%, the five main channels, 56.2%.

The five most-watched pay TV channels were:

  1. Lifestyle (2.98%)
  2. TV1 (2.88%)
  3. Fox 8 (2.79%)
  4. UKTV (2.09%)
  5. Fox Sports 3 (2.04%)

(Fox 8 had a very rare loss last night)

The five most-watched pay TV programs were:

  1. Relocation Relocation Australia (Lifestyle) — 111,000
  2. Grand Designs (Lifestyle) — 88,000
  3. Killing Time (TV1) — 77,000
  4. The Simpsons (Fox 8) — 69,000
  5. Jersey Shore (MTV) — 64,000

Regional: Prime/7Qld (three channels) won narrowly with 30.7% from WIN/NBN (three) on 30.3%, SC Ten (three) was on 17.2%, the ABC (four) was on 16.3% and SBS (two) ended with 5.9%. The main channels were won by WIN/NBN on 22.7% from Prime/7Qld on 19.9%. Eleven won the digitals with 6.4% from 7TWO on 6.0% and 7mate on 4.8%. The 10 digital channels had a very high FTA total of 35.6% last night. Prime/7Qld leads the week with 29.8% from WIN/NBN on 29.1%.

The five most-watched programs in regional areas were:

  1. Seven News — 439,000
  2. A Current Affair — 456,000
  3. Nine News — 445,000
  4. RBT — 421,000
  5. Today Tonight — 360,000

Major Markets: Another mixed night. Nine won Sydney and Melbourne overall and the main channels. ABC and ABC 1 were third in Sydney and ABC 1 was third in Melbourne. Seven won Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. ABC was third in the main channels in Adelaide and Perth. Ten was third in Brisbane. Go won Sydney, Eleven won Brisbane and Adelaide, ABC 2 was Melbourne and shared Perth with 7TWO. Nine leads the week in Sydney and Melbourne, Seven leads in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

(All shares on the basis of combined overnight 6pm to midnight All People)

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Viewing always falls in summer ratings because of the absence of old favourites. And we are seeing the full value to the networks of the digital channels, even though they are stuffed full of repeats and old favourites. That means the networks make more money than they would have in the past in summer when they only had one channel and had to program fresh stuff every now and then to keep viewers from going to pay TV or turning off their sets.

The digital channels are proving to be a real boon to the networks, especially Nine, Ten and Seven, which are running their main channels on a very lean, low-cost basis to try and maximise profits, especially in the run-up to Christmas.

The Thick of It might have been a repeat last night on the ABC at 9 o’clock, but it was still very relevant and immensely funny with some of the foulest, but funny invective ever written. The producers and writers of At Home With Julia should be made to sit down and watch last night’s episode to learn how to write a political satire/sitcom with bite. It made me realise what At Home With Julia was lacking — passion and real gutter politics.

The top five programs nationally last night were:

  1. Seven News — 1.599 million
  2. Nine News — 1.432 million
  3. Today Tonight — 1.313 million
  4. A Current Affair — 1.305 million
  5. RBT — 1.188 million

Tonight: With The Slap on ABC 1 and the hideous, but fascinating Beauty and The Geek Australia on Seven, Thursday nights over the past eight weeks of ratings had been interesting. Even Crownies, which ends tonight on the ABC, had been watchable for a while. But no more.

To compensate, summer has really arrived with Test cricket on Nine from today and hopefully until Monday evening (is that too much to wish for, Michael Clarke?).

The Family on SBS might be worth a glimpse from 8.30. Ten has Keeping Up With The Joneses. The Project stands out as the night’s highlight for Ten. But it has to be revamped for next year if it is to remain in the hour-long form. Seven has the US version of The Amazing Race. Nine has Getaway at 7.30, back in prime time on a weeknight, where it used to reign supreme (that’s ancient history).

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports