I call shenanigans on these stats! Who under 50 doesn’t have a DVR these days to skip all the ads for viagra and incontinence issues and to watch what you want when when you want? It’s only the older folks who aren’t into tech and don’t have young’uns to hook them up with one.

So, they don’t count people with DVRs which skews the stats older which causes shows to be made for oldersters (and as someone over 50 I’m generally bored by them) which causes the younger ones to stop watching and… It’s a vicious circle produced by the flawed stats.

TV viewers’ average age hits 50

The broadcast networks have grown older than ever — if they were a person, they wouldn’t even be a part of TV’s target demo anymore.

According to a study released by Magna Global’s Steve Sternberg, the five broadcast nets’ average live median age (in other words, not including delayed DVR viewing) was 50 last season. That’s the oldest ever since Sternberg started analyzing median age more than a decade ago — and the first time the nets’ median age was outside of the vaunted 18-49 demo.

Fueling the graying of the networks: the rapid aging of ABC, NBC and Fox. The three nets continue to grow older, while CBS — the oldest-skewing network — has remained fairly steady.

“The median ages of the broadcast networks keep rising, as traditional television is no longer necessarily the first screen for the younger set,” Sternberg wrote.




  1. GregAllen says:

    I read (somewhere!) that TV viewing skews MUCH older than the stereotype of teens spending endless hours in front of the tube. That stereotype actually better fits senior citizens.

    The main reason advertisers cater to younger viewers is because of disposable income and the higher value of brand loyalty setting in at a young age. It’s not because young people watch more TV.

  2. deowll says:

    The key is broadcast tv. Young people watch a lot of tv. Only a subset is largely limited to broadcast tv. I may not have watched a single broad cast program this year and I’m 58. Okay sometimes I watch the local news for a while but I only get dish network. PBS has a couple of programs worth watching.

  3. Uncle Patso says:

    “So, they don’t count people with DVRs which skews the stats older which causes shows to be made for oldersters ”

    Huh? I call shenanigans on that idea! It seems to me shows are being skewed younger and younger. Most shows on network TV these days seem aimed at six-to-eleven-year-olds!


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