A Night Owl’s Take on Nightline
It’s midnight and my Twitter feed, once flowing with serious news from the day, now features significantly more entertainment news. While this does not come as a huge surprise (entertainers Jay Leno, David Letterman and Jon Stewart dominate the late-night time slots on television), it begs the question, why would ABC move their news show, Nightline to an even later time-slot?
The show will be swapping time-slots with Jimmy Kimmel’s late night show, moving to 12:35 a.m. Even though Nightline receives 3.8 million viewers compared to Kimmel’s 1.8 million, ABC believes Kimmel’s audience will attract higher CPM rates (cost-per-thousand viewers), thus more advertising dollars.
According to Poynter’s Julie Moos, the time-swap is just one more step towards the end of the road for Nightline. The only reason ABC is even keeping the show around is to hold the time-slot, Moos speculates. The viewers are older, and unfortunately “less desirable to advertisers,” she says. Moos also reiterates that Nightline has lost its relevancy due to all-news cable channels.
While Nightline is very likely on the verge of death, the reasoning may boil down to more than just its older audience and television competitors.
Online news coupled with Twitter and Facebook allow readers to digest the news faster than ever before during the exciting daytime hours as readers buzz about the issues in real time.
Nightline may be the first to go, but all television nightly news should beware that by the time 6 p.m. hits, the news may have already been digested. In fact, the simple act of following the news on Twitter alone makes the evening news seem repetitive. While breaking news does happen in the evening, viewers’ shift to daytime news consumption may leave them with a smaller appetite for an after dinner news snack.
But that’s just the way this Twitter-loving night owl sees it. Tell us how you get your news in the comments.
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