Network TV Records Worst Ratings Ever

Fox is tops in dismal strike-plagued season; cable's gain continues
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2008 11:25 AM CDT
New technology put a big crimp in ratings.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – With just a few days left in the 2007-'08 TV season, Fox is set to take the ratings belt from five-time winner CBS. But it’ll be something of a hollow victory, because network TV on the whole recorded its worst year ever, Variety reports. Among the top five networks, audiences fell 7%, and the coveted 18-49 demographic fell 10%.

Networks have been hemorrhaging to cable for years, but 2007-'08 results were made especially brutal by the writers' strike—without which CBS would likely have won for a sixth consecutive year. DVRs are also hurting numbers. “The strike made this year an anomaly,” said Fox Entertainment’s chairman. “But we should all be shocked into being more aggressive about our thinking.”