Clean Sweep (February 2008 Primetime Sweeps)

The evidence is clear. In today's multi-channel universe, Ad-Supported Cable continues to seize a larger share of television viewership than the Broadcast networks combined - with consistent growth year after year. In an era of consumer control and personal attachment to video content that satisfies individual passions, cable is simply at its best.

With the completion of Broadcasts' strongest programming month, Ad-Supported Cable dominated this February Sweeps period, generating a fourteen point household share gap with the Broadcast Seven.


Source: CAB analysis of Nielsen Live+SD. Bdcst=pgm level. 1/31-2/27/08 v. 2/1-2/28/07.

The 2007-2008 Writers Guild of America strike which began on 11/5/07 and concluded on 2/12/08 impacted Broadcast sweeps' programming. The strike which lasted a 100 days; affected program specials such as "The Grammy Awards" which experienced a 15% decline among households from year ago on CBS and "Academy Awards" which fell 21% on ABC. According to an NPR report filed on 2/12/08, the strike cost the economy of Los Angeles an estimated $1.5 billion.

As Broadcasts' audience continued to diminish this February sweeps, viewers migrated to Cable in droves. Ad-Supported Cable outpaced the Broadcast Seven by 9.7 million households and the Big Four by 12.8 million in Primetime. Cable's commitment to excellence continued to spur its growth as viewership grew 9% from last year. In contrast, Broadcast viewing levels hit new lows - down 15% among households.

Broadcasts' loss was mainly driven by CBS's and ABC's weak performances this sweeps period. CBS's decline was driven by lack of Super Bowl Post Game programming which aired last sweeps period and ABC's Oscar specials lacked luster. In contrast, Fox experienced a healthy increase - up 9% due to telecasts of Super Bowl Post Game this sweeps period.


Source: CAB analysis of Nielsen Live+SD. Bdcst=pgm level. 1/31-2/27/08 v. 2/1-2/28/07.

Cable's continuous investment in its programming has benefited consumers by delivering original, compelling and high-quality content that attracts viewers and programming awards. Sweeps after sweeps, Cable's niche programming continues to shatter viewing records, making Cable the leading source of entertainment and information for TV audiences of all ages.

More viewers of all ages tuned into Cable's diverse offerings than ever before. Ad-Supported Cable experienced its largest influx among P25-64 - 3.2 million more viewers from year ago. Broadcast experienced its greatest decline among P35-49 thanks mainly to weak CBS programming this sweeps period - due to lack of Super Bowl post game this sweeps period v. year ago.

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