Updated: 37.8 Mil Watch Obama Inauguration

Jan 21, 2009  •  Post A Comment

A combined 37.8 million Americans watched the inauguration of President Barack Obama on Tuesday throughout the day, ranking it as the second most-watched inauguration behind Ronald Reagan’s in 1981.
Nielsen Media Research released the combined numbers across 17 broadcast and cable networks Wednesday afternoon. The 37.8 million people refers to those who watched between 10 a.m and 5 p.m. EST.
Combined inauguration coverage scored a 25.5 rating and drew 28.9 million in total households, and a 13.2 rating and 37.8 million viewers among persons 2+.
Numbers are only based on live-plus-same-day figures, and are expected to increase after live +7 numbers are released later. This marks the first inauguration since Nielsen began tracking DVR use.
In the top 56 local TV markets, President Obama’s inauguration scored a 29.2 overall household television rating, Nielsen said in preliminary numbers.
The Raleigh-Durham market had the largest TV audience with more than 51% of households tuned into the events.
The Nielsen audience estimate reflects live coverage on the combination of 14 broadcast and cable networks throughout the day’s events from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. East Coast. CNBC and ESPN aired the inauguration from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The numbers count only in-home viewing.
A full market-by-market breakdown appears here.
(Editor: Gelman. Updated throughout at 5:40p.m.)

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