NY Times, NY Post

ABC’s ‘World News Tonight’ Ascends to No. 1, Prompting What’s Being Described as ‘Crisis Meetings’ at NBC

Oct 8, 2014  •  Post A Comment

There’s a new No. 1 in evening news. ABC News’ “World News Tonight” finished first in all of the key ratings categories last week, surpassing perennial leader NBC News for the first time in more than six years, writes Bill Carter in The New York Times.

“ABC had been edging ahead of NBC in the newscast competition more regularly among viewers ages 25 to 54 — the group that drives most advertising sales for news programs,” Carter writes, adding that NBC had continued to maintain an advantage in total viewers and in the 18-49 demographic.

“That changed last week, when ABC’s newscast had 8.41 million total viewers, compared with 8.25 million for NBC,” Carter adds. “ABC also edged NBC in the 18-49 category and won in the 25-54 group for a ninth straight week.”

The win came after David Muir replaced Diane Sawyer Sept. 1 as lead anchor on the ABC News evening newscast, but it continued a rising trend for ABC that had begun on Sawyer’s watch, Carter’s piece notes.

ABC’s win prompted what the New York Post’s Page Six calls “crisis meetings” at NBC News over the future of “Nightly News with Brian Williams.”

The Post story quotes sources saying that after the ratings figures came out Tuesday, “the NBC News morning call was very somber. A meeting was held with the ‘Nightly News’ executive producer to try to motivate the staff. There will be further crisis meetings.”

Complicating the situation, NBC News President Deborah Turness and Williams reportedly have an “icy” relationship, the piece adds.

But a representative for NBC denied the report about Williams and Turness, and said the two “talk all the time and meet multiple times a week.”

The rep added: “The only tension in our morning call was about getting our colleagues safely out of West Africa.”

abc world news tonight


  1. It’s no wonder NBC’s ratings have crashed. It’s all those Sports fluff profiles about some NYC baseball player that is retiring. Is this local news or a Network Newscast?Since when do the Networks run LOCAL Sports stories. Who cares about local sports or sports in general? AND how about all these local TV feel good spots about some kid who’s sick, but wants to be famous and meet somebody?—get over it. Is this a Network World Wide News organization or a local PM magazine show for stay at home parents of dubious intelligence who want to have a good cry in the afternoon?
    The Enquirer does a better job covering News than does NBC News.

  2. “Crisis Meetings”, TV Week? That reads a bit inflammatory, don’t you think?

    I’m sure the Peacock News people are having a thought and a talk, or two, over the ratings report, but a .16 of a point difference means bupkis in a short span of time.

    Straight forward, unbiased reporting by any entity today will deliver a gain in viewership in the long run.

    Not every story is headline material. There needs to be more content in each of their given half hours, even if some reports are “Tell Stories” versus location pictures, and sound with production techniques.

    Pardon me, there I go thinking again.

  3. Better call Zucker!

    I kill me!

  4. @johan johnson,I hate baseball but jeter retiring was national news. Maybe Brian Williams can go on Fallon’s show and do more stupid bits to get dumb kids to watch his newscast.

  5. CBS with Pelley has the hard news. You learn more and they seem to have more information than the other two networks.

    NBC news is for the 50 and over demographic and stories are presented with those in mind. It tends to be stodgy in presentation. I agree they need to ditch the feel good stories. That said, I like Bryan Williams.

    ABC news is the People’s Magazine rendition and thus attracts those that read the magazine headlines while waiting in a supermarket checkout line. That said, David Muir is a refreshing voice and face.

  6. Oh YES PLEASE take Zucker back before he destroys CNN, Like EVERYTHING he has touched since today show

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