For the first time, ad-supported cable networks are poised to defeat the seven broadcast networks for the larger share of TV audience for the season.
Cable is pacing at a 49.8 share, compared to a 47.2 share for the seven broadcast networks, according to Turner analysis. Of course, no cable network has a show that draws audiences as big as Fox's American Idol, or any number of other broadcast offerings, the share momentum is in the wired world's favor.Cable also looks like a winner over broadcast in the May sweeps—another first. Cable is posting a 49.9 share for May, while the broadcast total is a 47.1 share. Turner's TNT is beaming over its own broadcast defeat. TNT is outdelivering UPN in May prime time in the three key adult demos. Among viewers 18-49, TNT is averaging 1.67 millions viewers, compared to 1.5 million for UPN; in 18-34, TNT is averaging 795,000 to UPN's 752,000; and in the 25-54 demo, TNT averaged 1.69 million to UPN's 1.41 million.