Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Web-based Olympics audience grows
Although it recorded lower ratings than its last Winter Olympic Games in 2002, NBC said its Web site, http://www.NBCOlympics.com/, attracted larger numbers in the first week than ever before. NBC Sports also claimed increases to its cable channels, including USA Network, MSNBC and CNBC.
The network’s TV ratings were down 35% from 2002's Salt Lake City games and down 26% from the 1998 games in Nagano, Japan.
However, NBC Olympics chairman Dick Ebersol said the network would make a profit of $50 million-$75 million on the Turin games overall, resulting from about $900 million in Olympics advertising spending.
NBCOlympics.com reported 232 million page views in the first week, significantly outpacing the total in Salt Lake City of 5.9 million video streams. Ebersol said it's the first time that the company will make a profit from the Web site: roughly $5 -$6 million.
This year’s coverage of the Torino Olympic Winter Games featured the most coverage, including the most live coverage, across all of the company’s terrestrial and cable TV channels, radio and Internet platforms than any Winter Olympics in history. Despite the six-hour time difference between the U.S. East Coast and Italy, the combined NBC Universal, NBC, USA, MSNBC, CNBC, NBC HD and Universal HD channels provided viewers with 416 total hours of coverage. That’s more than the 375.5 hours of coverage on NBC, CNBC and MSNBC from Salt Lake.
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