With traditional television viewership in decline, the TV industry needs to embrace the new ways people want to get content instead of fighting against it.
The New York Times reports audience numbers are way down for the major networks. Over a recent four-week span, ABC viewership was down 21%, Fox was down 20%, CBS 8% and NBC 3% for the 18-49 age demo, which is the all-important sweet spot for advertisers.
What’s behind the widespread drop in viewership? Lots of people would say the DVR, but that has actually increased viewership of shows when you think about it.
My theory is that the TV industry is being a bunch of Luddites and they’re shooting themselves in the foot because of it. Technology has changed how we want to get content. People want content on tablets, computers and even short bits on phones. But instead of embracing change, the industry fights it at every turn.
For example, NimbleTV.com is a startup that lets you be a cable or satellite subscriber and watch your TV anywhere in the world on any device. But the assumption is the lawsuits are coming against Nimble, just like they are against Aereo.com, a startup from the founder of Fox TV I told you about that offers an affordable way to take your local broadcast TV on the go.
Listen, TV industry people, your IQ is not even room temperature. You’re being hogs. Get over yourself because you can’t put the tech genie back in the bottle. Embrace it and figure how to profit from it. Don’t interfere with capitalism and technology. It’s not the right way to do business.
Editor’s note: This segment originally aired April 26, 2012.