Content with a focus on the COVID-19 pandemic and social unrest has driven a 23% increase in national and local TV news consumption in September versus the same month a year ago, says Nielsen — down from the near 50% increase in the second quarter. Weekly time spent watching TV news content rose to 7 hours/5 minutes in September 2020 versus 5 hours/46 minutes in September 2019.
A new report, released at the TVB Forward Conference ’12, shows that news on TV stations in the top markets dwarf the five major cable news networks’ national and in-market audiences.
You know the economy is bad when people actually begin to care about the news. But Americans vote with their pocketbooks and the resurgence in TV news viewing clearly is an extension of that. What is also interesting is the surge in news interest would seem to buck the supposition that people want to put troubles aside and cuddle up to a comedy or law-enforecement drama when times are tough.