In Depth

Hillary Clinton Brings Broadcast Ratings Gains

NBC once again won the 10 p.m. battle of the broadcast networks’ Democratic National Convention specials and CBS once again finished third Tuesday night.

The good news for NBC: Preliminary national data from Nielsen showed its Brian Williams-hosted hour was up 1.19 million viewers from Monday night to average 6.04 million viewers. The second night of the convention in Denver featured New York Sen. Hillary Clinton urged her supporters to vote for Illinois Senator Barack Obama to be the party’s presidential nominee.

ABC News’s hour, anchored by Charles Gibson, George Stephanopoulos and Diane Sawyer, also gained viewers, up 490,000 to post an average of 4.27 million on Tuesday.

CBS’s hour, anchored by Katie Couric, Bob Schieffer and Jeff Greenfield, lost some 127,000 viewers to average 3.39 million viewers Tuesday.

For the second night in a row, only ABC’c convention coverage grew compared to its entertainment lead-in, picking up some 73,000 viewers from “Wanna Bet.”

NBC’s convention special lost nearly 4.9 million from the audience for the peacock network’s summer hit, “America’s Got Talent.”

CBS’s convention coverage lost more than 3 million viewers from “Big Brother 10.”

There are no comparisons to the second night of the Democratic convention back on July 27, 2004, because none of the broadcast networks covered it. The three nets’ convention specials on Monday lost a combined 1 million viewers compared to opening night in 2004.

Cable news networks, which opened their convention blitzes with double-digit audience growth from four years ago, will report their Tuesday ratings later Wednesday afternoon.

(Editor: Baumann)