31.1M Watched Jackson Memorial

By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 8, 2009 5:03 PM CDT
Michael Jackson fans watch his memorial broadcast live from Los Angeles.    (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis,File)
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(Newser) – Michael Jackson had a big audience for his final show. Nielsen numbers show that 31.1 million people tuned in on 19 TV networks across the US, reports the Washington Post. The stats are especially impressive considering the memorial aired on a weekday afternoon, unlike the funeral for Princess Di, which drew 33 million on a Saturday. It also doesn't include online viewers.

Internet numbers are hard to pin down, but MSNBC, for one, says it set a record with 19 million video streams. CNN recorded 10.5 million streams that day. In terms of just TV, Jackson's audience was about the same as the last American Idol finale and 6 million fewer than the most recent Oscars, but it topped the funeral of Ronald Reagan by 10 million. Meanwhile, an estimated 6 million watched in the UK.