The test cricket won the battle of the two forms last night – the final session of the Second Test on Nine was watched by more than 1.2 million people. Nine said that more than 1.3 million were watching when Australian captain Steve Smith reached 50 runs around 5.24 pm. Ten’s Big Bash was all colour and movement (to what end?). According to Ten the two sessions had a national audience of 1.02 million each. The preliminary figures from Oztam show session 1 with 1.086 million and the second with 892,000, which doesn’t seem right, so Ten’s data could be right. Because of high audience figures and ratings in Melbourne (which Ten won) and Adelaide (Ten won the main channels), the game ended up with solid figures nationally.

Someone at the ABC had the sense to program a Catalyst program from 2013 which examined if the universe is fine tuned. It’s a very complex subject, and yet, as I saw at the time it was broadcast last year, Catalyst handled it with aplomb, simplifying ideas of black holes and strings and multiverses, quantum mechanics, without any fear (which would have frozen and turned to stone a commercial TV producer and programming executive being pitched to be a journalist with an idea to tell viewers great stories about science). 747,000 viewers agreed and watched the program last night.

Catalyst has lifted its game in the past couple of years and  is now one of the stars in the ABC line up (Quasar?), despite what all the dreary dearies in ABC TV news and current Affairs might think and covet its skinny budget. In my opinion it ranks equally with Australian Story in importance to the ABC TV line up and both programs deserve more, not less resources. While Compass isn’t in the same class (it’s more of a middle ranker), it too has lifted its game in the past couple of years, yet ABC management has rewarded that improvement by gutting it and the rest of the religion area of program making (for radio and TV). That is silly and on a par with the some of the Abbott government funding cuts.

Network channel share:

  1. Nine (27.5%)
  2. Seven (26.3%)
  3. Ten (23.5%)
  4. ABC (16.3%)
  5. SBS (6.4%)

Network main channels:

  1. Nine (19.1%)
  2. Ten (16.4%)
  3. Seven (15.2%)
  4. ABC (10.8%)
  5. SBS ONE (5.3%)

Top 5 digital channels: 

  1. 7TWO (6.2%)
  2. GO (5.5%)
  3. 7mate (5.0%)
  4. ONE (4.0%)
  5. Eleven (3.1%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. Nine News — 1.502 million
  2. Second Cricket Test: Australia v India, Day 2 Session 3 (Nine) — 1.263 million
  3. Seven News — 1.177 million
  4. Big Bash Cricket: Session 2 (Ten) – 1.177 million
  5. Nine News 6.30 1.023 million
  6. ABC News 987,000
  7. Second Cricket Test: Australia v India, Day 2 Session 2 (Nine) — 971,000
  8. A Current Affair (Nine) — 911,000
  9. 7.30 (ABC) — 904,000
  10. Big Bash Cricket: Session 3 (Ten) — 892,000

Top metro programs

  1. Nine News — 1.061 million
  2. Nine News 6.30 — 1.023 million

Losers: The Big Bash on Ten. Yes, it’s colour and movement and great for Ten, but in terms of comparison with what we have seen in the seven days of test cricket with India so far, it’s a pale imitation, artificial colouring compared with the real stuff.Metro news and current affairs:

  1. Nine News — 1.061 million
  2. Nine News — 1.023 million
  3. Seven News — 911,000
  4. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 836,000
  5. A Current Affair (Nine) – 775,000
  6. ABC News — 685,000
  7. 7.30 (ABC) — 618,000
  8. Ten Eyewitness News – 524,000
  9. The Project 7pm (Ten) — 448,000
  10. The Project 6.30pm (Ten) — 391,000

Morning TV:

  1. Sunrise (Seven) – 365,000
  2. Today (Nine) – 276,000
  3. The Morning Show (Seven) — 169,000
  4. News Breakfast (ABC 1,  96,000 + 54,000 on News 24) — 150,000
  5. Mornings – Summer (Nine) — 82,000
  6. Studio 1o (Ten) — 60,000

 Top five pay TV channels:

  1. Fox 8  (3.0%)
  2. LifeStyle  (2.3%)
  3. Disney (1.9%)
  4. TVHITS, UKTV (1.8%)
  5. Arena (1.6%)

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. Dance Moms (LifeStyle You) – 67,000
  2. The Big Bang Theory (Comedy Channel) – 62,000
  3. Lewis (UKTV) – 59,000
  4. Would I Lie To You (UKTV) – 52,000
  5. Selling Houses Australia (LifeStyle) – 50,000

*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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