Magazine article Variety

Top Cablers Trend Down for Year

Magazine article Variety

Top Cablers Trend Down for Year

Article excerpt

Even though cable is traditionally measured on a quarterly or calendaryear basis, the end of the broadcast season offers a good gauge of a cabler's popularity during the most-watched months of the year - and to see how they stack up to the big boys.

CBS and Fox claimed ratings victories in various Nielsen categories for the 2011-12 season that ended on May 23. The Eye joined NBC in posting year-to-year gains, while ABC was roughly flat and Fox was down a bit.

During the same period, cable giants ESPN, USA, Disney Channel and TNT all lost ground vs. the previous season, while other top-20 nets including AMC, Discovery and Food posted healthy upswings.

Most-watched broadcaster CBS, which averaged 11.75 million viewers during the season, delivered an audience that was nearly four times the size of top câbler USA (3.03 miUion). And in adults 18-49, the audience for overall leader Fox (4.1 million in that age group) was more than three times that of No. 1 cable network ESPN (1.2 million).

USA remained on top in total cable viewers despite a 2% dip, and ranked third in adults 18-49 (1.13 million), down 6%. It also edged past ESPN in adults 25-54, a reversal of last year. …

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