Television viewers don’t seem half as interested – literally – in the 2020 Democratic national convention as they did in the Democrats’ 2016 convention.
Nielsen Media Research ratings reveal that during the first two nights of the Democratic convention, viewership dropped significantly from how many people were watching when Hillary Clinton topped the Democratic presidential ticket back in 2016.
Preliminary numbers now coming in are showing an approx. 50% drop in DNC viewership from 2016 on the broadcast networks. Final numbers including cable news coming in a bit, but expect more of the same in the 40% drop range. Earlier thoughts: https://t.co/IzfFZzBL3I
— Joe Concha (@JoeConchaTV) August 18, 2020
The ratings dropped by a quarter compared to 2016 on night one and shot down further on night two
Only 6.13 million people watched the network broadcasts of the convention on CBS, ABC, and NBC during nights one and two this week, which is a 48% drop from four years ago.
The first two nights featured speakers like former First Lady Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton, and New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, among other prominent Democrats.
The ratings went down 28% compared to 2016 on the first night of the convention and continued to plummet on night two.
Ratings for Monday's virtual Democratic National Convention were down -28% versus 2016, when the event was held live. https://t.co/hTj2A64NKj
— U.S. News (@usnews) August 18, 2020
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Team Biden deflects
On night two, Tuesday, Joe Biden officially accepted the party’s nomination alongside his wife, Jill Biden.
National press secretary for Biden’s campaign, TJ Ducklo, deflected when addressing the poor viewership numbers and said that digital viewership was up because more and more people use streaming services as opposed to traditional network television.
“28.9 million Americans tuned in to @DemConvention last night across TV & digital platforms, up from 2016 & shattering the previous record for digital streams, which totaled 10.2m even as numbers still come in,” Ducklo tweeted on Tuesday. “We are producing a digital convention, and people are watching.”
NEWS: 28.9 million Americans tuned in to @DemConvention last night across TV & digital platforms, up from 2016 & shattering the previous record for digital streams, which totaled 10.2m even as numbers still come in.
We are producing a digital convention, and people are watching.
— TJ Ducklo (@TDucklo) August 18, 2020
Republican convention is next week
Republicans are scheduled to have their national convention next week. President Trump has said some of the speeches will be held on the White House lawn, where supporters of the President could be in attendance.
“I’ll probably be giving my speech at the White House because it is a great place,” Trump said to the New York Post.
“We could have quite a group of people,” Trump added. “It’s very big, a very big lawn. We could have a big group of people.”
SCOOP: President Trump confirms he's decided on the White House lawn for his convention speech.
— Ebony Bowden (@ebonybowden) August 13, 2020
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