DD News leads the way as English news channels left far behind
As almost all English news channels on the Television sets in India flash numbers related to their viewership and make tall claims of being the most watched, the truth seems to be something else. While logic dictates that such claims of at least one of them would be accurate, it turns out that none of them is.
Instead it is the public sector broadcaster Doordarshan (DD) News, which has beaten all such private channels, according to the data released by Broadcast Audience Research Council of India (BARC), which uses a real-time television rating points (TRP) measurement system, and is a non-profit body of the Indian Broadcasting Foundation, Association of Advertising Agencies of India and Indian Society of Advertisers.
And DD News in the English genre has done so in some style as numbers related to all different measuring standards applied by BARC show.
According to the data released by the Council for the week of 10th to 16th June of this year, when DD News broadcasted English News, an average of 34.2 per cent of well educated & high income group male viewers of age group 22 and above in cities with a population of 10 Lakh or more, watched DD News, leaving other English News channels far behind.
In fact other than Times Now (28.2 per cent) and newly launched Republic TV (17.9 per cent), all other channels combined did not reach number achieved by DD News.
Along with this, the data of average for the same week shows that more than half of the viewers in the category of both male and female of ages 15 or above in rural and urban areas watched DD news when it showed English bulletin while all other channels were left fighting over less than 50 per cent of the market share.
The average viewership pattern of last four weeks has also shown a similar trend with BARC data of average last 4 weeks in the rural & urban area, showing that an average 58 per cent of English News viewers watched DD News when it aired English news bulletin.
Even when it comes to urban areas having more than 10 lakh population, an area which is conventionally thought to be the dominant market space of private English news channels, the figure of average last 4 weeks BARC data shows that more than 40 per cent of the well-educated and high-income group Males of age group 22 and above watched English news bulletins of DD News, with most other channels struggling to even reach the 5 per cent mark.
And though the hope with the release of such numbers along with the fact that in a population of more than 1.2 billion people in the country, the English news channels reach just a meager 4 million people, would help reduce the screaming and boasting by 'superstar' news anchors on such channels, chance of this happening seem dim.
But they would do well to change their ways, especially given the numbers posted by DD News, which prove that the alternate and more conventional method of delivering news works just fine.