Under 50s turning of TV

Traditional television viewing numbers are plummeting in the 18-49 age group according to Duncan Grieve at The Spinoff.

Ratings show people under 50 are abandoning television

A few months ago NZ on Air published some research which showed how radically media consumption has evolved among younger generations in this country. Specifically, it showed that the younger half of the country was more likely to watch video online on a daily basis than linear television.

It was not well received by much of the television industry, or by NZ on Air…

…I asked a friend who works at a media agency to provide me with some television ratings data.

What I found astounded me.

18-49 Ratings decline in NZ2006–2016

tvratings18-49

That’s a decline of 41% over four years.

This doesn’t really shock me. Younger people are turned off by and are turning off traditional television.

Greive goes on to ask questions about whether NZ on Air should plough so much money into the old channels, and gives an example of abysmal bang for bucks.

…the last episode of Dirty Laundry – TVNZ1’s flagship drama, produced at a cost of over $500,000 per episode – attracted an audience in its channel’s target 25-54 demographic of just over 25,000.

A minuscule number, by any standards – particularly given that we are repeatedly told that television remains the place mass audiences live, and thus justifies its exorbitant share of the funding budgets.

25,000 people in a target demographic watching a $500,000+ episode of television represents around $20 per viewer.

That is shocking.

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16 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  18th November 2016

    There’s so much crap on TV I hardly watch it myself these days. I don’t even usually watch the whole 1 hour evening news segments any more.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  18th November 2016

      Me neither. Get news and entertainment elsewhere.

      Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  18th November 2016

      I can’t remember when I last watched something other than the news*, either, and I am guessing-call me psychic-that Gezza is, like me,a bit over 18 😀 If my television dies, I may well not replace it. I used to like some of the good English programmes, but it’s not the same watching them alone-and they are very much in the minority.

      My television is small, but it’s still bigger than a computer screen so I do wonder why people would rather watch something online-or are they flipping it through ?

      I don’t watch the sports news, of course, as I don’t play or go to any sports.

      * except when I turned it on on Monday to see if the earthquakes were being shown.

      Reply
    • the first 5-10 minutes of 6pm ‘news’ are enough – then if you’re really desperate, Stuff, NZH, BBC, AlJ…. plenty of real news outside of NZ MSM

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  19th November 2016

        I can’t have Al Jazeera-I was told it was 16-no go-went all the way up the channels, but nothing.

        Reply
      • Gezza

         /  19th November 2016

        If I remember to watch the tv news these days I prefer TV1, but because they have a couple of headline leading items, and then sprinkle other relatively important or significant items amongst a lot of magazine/infotainment-type trivia and the ‘today’s weather’ segment over the first 35 minutes, I get trapped into watching a lot of useless in-between crap that irritates me. I quite oten find I mentally swich off, get distracted, and then miss the Items I wanted to see. 😕 I don’t think TV3’s any better, really.

        Reply
  2. John Schmidt

     /  18th November 2016

    Once you get to 50 and beyond the last thing you want watch is reality TV.
    PS here is a hint to the geniuses at TV and radio cjannels, 50 plus is the money is.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  18th November 2016

      The good English ones like those about historic places don’t count as ‘reality TV’ to me.

      SOMEONE must have watched the endless cooking shows, but nobody I know did.

      Reply
  3. Kitty Catkin

     /  18th November 2016

    My television wears a piece of vintage linen most of the time, as even the flatscreens are not really ornamental. Was there anything uglier than the clunky ones (two toned, grey and black erk) that preceded these ? They were even uglier than the old box-shaped ones made of woodgrain or even the ones before the ones before flatscreens.

    Reply
  4. patupaiarehe

     /  18th November 2016

    I can’t say I make a point of actually watching TV anymore. It is on in the background in our household most of the time, but nobody pays much attention to it unless someone sees something interesting, which doesn’t happen often. Gone are the days when I would make a point of watching something at a certain time, it is all available online now, whenever I want to watch it….

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  19th November 2016

      If it’s always on in your house, I suppose that that would count as ‘being watched’ for a survey.

      We used to watch Fair Go, until it became rather trivial and silly. The last one I saw, just to see what they’d say, was someone complaining that a jar of moisturiser wasn’t the same size as the box it came in-which FG took seriously. What next ? Complaints that when one buys a box of chocolates, the box has spaces in it and isn’t solid chocolate ? When I buy perfume, I don’t expect the bottle to be the same size as the box it comes in !

      Reply
  5. I would never have guessed in 1968 (I think it was) when we got our first TV – rather late by many people’s standards – that, having watched the ‘birth’ of broadcast television, I would live to see the effective death of it …

    … or that its demise would be precipitated by further massive increases in visual media technology, accompanied by the very real danger of our imaginations – the ability of the mind to be creative or resourceful – turning off commensurate to digital media doing the ‘visualisation’ work for us …

    In this sense it is all a kind of “opiate of the masses” …

    But even more important than ‘sedation’ by the medium is the content or message purveyed by so-called ‘entertainment’ media … and what the planned [or unforeseen] outcomes may be …

    “In this world of fiction, power, wealth and senseless pleasure are the objects of life, folly and crime, beauty and craftiness are the key to success …. The soulless machine man must seek diversion in other departments of the mechanised world without, not in moral elevation above that world. An elevation which cannot be measured, calculated and checked would be dangerous, individual, alien to the machine” – Frank E Warner “Future of Man” 1944

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  19th November 2016

      Very prescient, that last para.

      Reply
      • Yes, Warner (international jurist Ernst Frankenstein, probably a sort of Geoffrey Palmer character of his day) based his evaluation on how literature, the press, radio and cinema were already being used in the 1930s & 40s, perhaps especially by the Totalitarian States, but not exclusively so … he mentions their private use as well …

        80 years later I find it relatively easy to relate what he says to Sheldon Wolin’s concept of “Inverted Totalitarianism” … Control of the media being so important to it …

        I see there’s a special on at Dick Smith … in the games department …

        ‘Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare’ …. Half price Gezza … reduced to $69 …

        Do you see …?

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverted_totalitarianism

        Reply

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