More TV viewers tuning in online

Screenshot from movie and TV show downloading site Hulu.com

TEXT OF STORY

Kai Ryssdal: The television at my house is on the fritz, so we've all been gathering around the laptop to catch our favorite shows online.

It's nice to cuddle together and all, but Marketplace's Steve Henn reports the number of viewers making a habit of watching on the Web is giving executives in TV-land an enormous headache.


Steve Henn: Up to 20 percent of TV viewers are no longer watching TV. Instead, they're streaming their favorite shows on the Net, according to a new survey by Integrated Media Measurement.

Brad Adgate is with media buyer Horizon Media.

Brad Adgate: The pitfall is what does that do to the ratings on the television show.

And advertising dollars. That's a conundrum for network executives and shows like Gossip Girl.

Announcer: The CW network's hottest new series...

Gossip Girl did so well online network executives worried it was cannibalizing the TV audience, so they pulled it off the Net.

But Amanda Welsh at Integrated Media Measurement says that's a bad idea. Online viewers tend to be busy.

Amanda Welsh: Being able to decide when and where they watch TV is critical for them.

They also tend to be women.

Welsh: Well-educated, high-income women of a certain age are very attractive to advertisers because we know they drive a lot of purchasing decisions.

Welsh says when a network streams programs on the Web, more often than not it ends up building its broadcast audience.

In Washington, I'm Steve Henn for Marketplace.

About the author

Steve Henn was Marketplace’s technology and innovation reporter for the entire portfolio of Marketplace programs until December 2011.

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