Dems Win First Round In Convention Viewing Ratings

The New York Times reports:

Shortly after the start of the Republican National Convention on Monday, President Trump’s former campaign manager Brad Parscale complained that Fox News had repeatedly cut away. “Can’t believe I have to watch the convention on @CNN,” Mr. Parscale carped on Twitter. “Unbelievable.” Plenty of viewers ignored his advice.

A significant portion of the convention’s TV audience on Monday — 42 percent — watched live on Fox News, one of the biggest ratings days in the network’s history, according to Nielsen. Fox News typically leads the pack during a Republican convention, but its dominance during Monday’s Trump-centric spectacle was striking.

Total TV viewership for the remote Republican gathering, however, fell short of the Democrats’ convention opener. About 17 million people watched between 10 and 11 p.m., a program that featured Donald J. Trump Jr. and Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, down from the 19.7 million who tuned in a week earlier for speeches by Senator Bernie Sanders and Michelle Obama.

The New York Post reports:

Network viewership of the opening Democratic convention festivities plunged 28 percent from 2016, with less people interested in the pre-taped and low-energy speeches from people’s homes. According to Nielsen, the audience for the Republicans on the first night of their celebration also fell 28 percent from 2016.

These figures do not include digital streaming, which has grown substantially in the past four years. It’s therefore unclear how much online streaming and mobile devices affected those numbers as TV viewing habits change and are not factored into traditional ratings.