Twice this week I’ve found gems over at the Hollywood Reporter! Here’s a few excerpts from the latest:
Nielsen Media Research said Thursday that the impact of digital video recorders is a leading cause of why television viewing dropped precipitously this year.
Many of the top shows — from ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy” to Fox’s “American Idol” to CBS’ “CSI” — saw their ratings drop in the spring.
I have a personal beef against industries that jump to point their woes on technology (newspapers, have you met MLB? you have a lot in common, I’m sure you’ll be good friends). It’s just too easy a scapegoat, and there’s not an easy way to defend the tech side. It’s actually nearly impossible.
For example, I’ll make the opposite claim of Nielsen – I’ll claim that the slip in viewership is due to quality (and maybe a bit of the ol buyshifting – hey, I can plug my own work, can’t I?). Now I’m not exactly sure when it happened, but over the course of 06/07, the quality of TV went from what seemed like an awesome lineup into a big old snoozefest. I think it’s just too many years of investigating crime scenes, grizzly murders, and serial killers; too many years of mediocre singers trying to get their 15 minutes; I suggest that audiences are getting tired of it.
But, just like Nielsen, I can’t prove it. I don’t even have hard data like them, but I know enough about the “technology” in use to accept that they can’t prove it either. The music industry is suffering as well, but frankly they’ve spent the better part of 10 years making as many wrong decisions as possible. And they blamed the tech the whole way down the slide. My advice to the TV folks: look inward for problems before being so quick to point fingers outwards.