Survivor losing viewers

2006-10-27 09:58
Johannesburg - Survivor South Africa's viewers have almost dropped by half since the first episode was broadcast on September 3.

After the record figures of the launch episode - 1.25 million viewers with an AR (Audience Rating) of 6.5 - the figures for last Sunday night's episode fell to 675 470 with an AR of 3.5.

According to a spokesperson for Telmar, the company whose computer programme was used by Beeld to obtain the statistics, the AR is determined by means of a formula that calculates the number of viewers watching the programme and the time they spend watching.

Telmar's figures are released by research company AGB Nielsen, the same company that provides viewing figures and ARs to M-Net.

AGB Nielsen's figures are determined by research done in households which has to comply with certain requirements.

These households receive a "person meter" - an apparatus that every family member has to use when they watch television. A viewer has to press a button for the programme he or she is watching and every time the channel is changed.

"These figures are lower than we expected and it is obviously disappointing," Carl Fisher, head of M-Net's Local Productions said on Thursday. Fisher added that M-Net's determination of viewing figures was done differently to the system used by Telmar.

He said the channel was, however, hoping that the figures would improve after last week's tribe merge.

Fisher also thinks the low figure for the past Sunday's episode could be attributed to the Brazilian Grand Prix that was screened in the same time slot.

"Something like that will definitely influence viewing."

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