Channel 10 Loudly Claims Victory - Channel 12 Says Not So Fast

Friday, March 02, 2012


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First, to be clear, both stations here in this market are fighting like dogs for viewers and ratings.

Both stations are faced with a new media that has audiences going away - to places like this - the internet. Therefore, when rating numbers come out station leaders work hard to get their station's story out - as they should - as any leader of a news organization would.

The important February ratings period has come and gone. The results, frankly, are impressive for both stations. Channel 6 continues to plug along in 3rd place.

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Channel 10 Says It's #1 All Time Periods

Channel 10 is out loud and proud saying it has continued it's dominance in the news market. The station says it won every newscast beating the competition combined. They made a point to single out their 11pm newscast showing that time period remains a hot bed of competition.

The 11pm Battle

One of the hardest fought battles has been at 11pm. The "winner" of that time frame has gone back and forth. We also saw a significant move at Channel 10 recently when long time anchor Gene Valicenti was replaced by 7pm anchor Dan Jaehnig. (Valicenti still anchors the #1 rated 6pm news and also the 5:30pm news). Anyone expecting that the Valicenti-Jaehnig swtich would product some blockbuster news is a fool. This is the first rating book with the change and in fairness to Jaehnig it will take some time to see what the future holds. As far as the ratings, Channel 10 is claiming it is #1 in all newscasts including the 11pm. A verbal scuffle between the two stations over rounding has 10 saying it won by 1-rating point - but 12 saying it was a statistical tie. Bottom line is that the race at 11pm is as tight as it ever was.

Channel 10 says it beat 12 by a full rating point. 12 says that's not true and the actual rating book when printed will show each station equal.

The 6pm Battle

The story here is that Channel 10 is clearly the winner at 6pm.

There is little doubt about that. No version of rounding can change that.

Channel 10 scored a 9-rating. Each rating represents about 5,200 households watching TV at a certain time. Channel 12 had a 7 rating.

While 10 is the highest rated newscast in the market at 6pm hands down--even when you combine Channel 12 and Channel 6 - one nugget of information is striking.

With Channel 10's 9 rating--and Channel 12's 7- rating---this race has never been closer. Records dating back to 1991 don't show as close a race as now. There was time when Channel 10 would be 5, 7 9 rating points better than 12. Channel 12 says it grew it's 6pm audience 23% year over year.

The Morning Battle

Channel 12's story here is growth.

Channel 10's story here is ratings.

In the 4:30am to 7pm slot Channel 10 wins the time period. But the race here has tightened up with Channel 10 adding resources like a new anchor side kick and a new traffic reporter. Channel 12 says the numbers show they are closer to beating Channel 10 now more than any time since 1994.

In many news markets around the country---the focus has shifted to mornings and RI is no exception. This is new 6pm newscast if you will because people are getting up earlier and that's why you have seen the shift to a 4:30am newscast start in the morning.



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