It was Seven’s night, although Nine had a big win in Sydney because Australia’s Got Talent beat The X Factor (401,000 to 383,000); 60 Minutes beat Sunday Night and the NRL final boosted the audience for the Nine News at 6pm to a huge 640,000 (297,000 ahead of Seven News). Seven won well elsewhere, with big margins in Adelaide and Perth, and in regional markets.

But the big story from last night was the abject failure of Ten’s schedule, from the 5pm news, all the way through to the end of ratings.  Ten News had 553,000 national/ 394,000 metro/ 159,000 regional viewers, which is well under figures from earlier in the year (it’s being renamed EyeWitness News, which won’t look good if the number of viewers continues to weaken). All programs had below par figures, but the third episode of The Bachelor from stood out with its worst ratings so far — 755,000 national/ 575,000 metro/ 180,000 regional viewers. And at 8.30pm Ripper Street tanked further to 424,000 national/ 336,000 metro/ 88,000 regional viewers, which was an audience that rivaled those ‘hits’ from 2012, Everybody Dance Now and I Will  Survive.

Ten’s performance yesterday was one of the worst this year (and it had weak performances on Friday and Saturday nights as well). In fact, Ten had a prime time main channel ratings share last night of a very low 8.5% in metro markets and an all time low of 5.6% in regional markets. No wonder Southern Cross is very, very unhappy with the higher amount it has to pay Ten in affiliation fees.

Nine’s high cost, high profile Power Games: The Packer Murdoch Story (1.068 million national/ 773,000 metro/ 295,000 regional viewers) didn’t add or lose viewers for its second part. That’s because it was over by the time Rupert Murdoch went to London to buy The News of The World in the late 1969’s and then snapped up the Telegraphs from Kerry Packer in the early 1970’s. From 1969 onward the Packers were provincial players from Murdoch’s point of view.

Network channel share:

  1. Seven (34.6%)
  2. Nine (31.1%)
  3. ABC (16.6%)
  4. Ten (13.4%)
  5. SBS (4.3%)

Network main channels:

  1. Seven (27.8%)
  2. Nine (23.1%)
  3. ABC1 (13.1%)
  4. Ten (8.5%)
  5. SBS ONE (3.1%)

Top digital channels: 

  1. GO (4.2%)
  2. 7TWO, Gem (3.8%)
  3. 7mate (3.0%)
  4. Eleven (2.9%)
  5. ABC 2 (2.2%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. Nine News — 2.250 million
  2. The X Factor – Performance (Seven) — 2.207 million
  3. Sunday Night (Seven) — 1.900 million
  4. 60 Minutes (Nine) — 1.836 million
  5. Seven News — 1.762 million
  6. Australia’s Got Talent (Nine) — 1.730 million
  7. Bones (Seven) — 1.378 million
  8. ABC News — 1.281 million
  9. Supersized Earth (ABC1) — 1.146 million
  10. Power Games: The Packer Murdoch Story  (Nine) — 1.068 million

Top metro programs:

  1.  Nine News — 1.499 million
  2. The X Factor – Performance (Seven) — 1.440 million
  3. 60 Minutes (Nine) — 1.241 million
  4. Sunday Night (Seven) — 1.200 million
  5. Seven News — 1.192 million
  6. Australia’s Got Talent (Nine) — 1.172 million

Losers: The Bachelor, Ripper Street on Ten. the second part of Power Games: The Packer Murdoch Story on Nine.Metro news and current affairs:

  1. Nine News — 1.499 million
  2. 60 Minutes (Nine) — 1.241 million
  3. Sunday Night (Seven) — 1.200 million
  4. Seven News — 1.192 million
  5. ABC News — 858,000
  6. SBS World News — 218,000
  7. The Observer Effect (SBS ONE) — 97,000

Metro morning TV:

  1. Weekend Sunrise (Seven) – 336,000
  2. Weekend Today (Nine) – 279,000
  3. Insiders (ABC1, 158,000, 98,000 on News 24) — 255,000
  4. Landline (ABC1) — 178,000
  5. Financial Review Sunday (Nine) — 142,000
  6. The Bolt Report (Ten) — 121,000
  7. Offsiders (ABC1) — 118,000
  8. Inside Business (ABC1) — 97,000
  9. Meet The Press repeat (Ten) — 93,000
  10. The Bolt Report repeat (Ten) — 91,000
  11. Meet The Press (Ten) — 81,000

Top five pay TV channels:

  1. TV1 (2.3%)
  2. Foxtel Movies 8 (2.1%)
  3. LifeStyle (2.0%)
  4. Fox 8  (1.9)%.
  5. Fox Sports 1  (1.8%)

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. AFL After The Bounce (Fox Footy) – 83,000
  2. Seinfeld (TV1) – 75,000
  3. The Vicar of Dibley (UKTV) – 70,000
  4. Midsomer Murders (UKTV) – 69,000
  5. The Campaign (Foxtel Movies) – 64,000

Tonight:  Ten starts a new program called A League of Their Own. Watch it and wonder why. Two hours earlier Seven starts Million Dollar Minute. If you haven’t seen the promos or outdoor ads for this one you’ve been overseas. It’s Seven’s big move to try and stop the rot in the ratings of its  6PM news broadcasts in Sydney and Melbourne. Seven feels that Nine News is being boosted (which it is) by Hot Seat at 5.30pm (hosted by Eddie McGuire). So its solution is a home-grown game show to try and first neuter Hot Seat’s impact in Sydney and Melbourne, and then win the segment. This all sounds a bit trite, but there’s a lot riding on this for Seven; higher ratings means more ad revenues in Sydney and Melbourne. And, if it works, it could mean Today Tonight lives to fight for another year.

*Data © OzTAM Pty Limited 2013. The data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) in whole or in part, without the prior written consent of OzTAM. (All shares on the basis of combined overnight 6pm to midnight all people.) and network reports.

Peter Fray

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