A new study indicated that there is 8% more commercial and promotion "clutter" on the broadcast networks in prime time than there was in 2000, and 36% more than in 1991.
According to the study, by Los Angeles-based PhaseOne Communications, viewers are now exposed to an average 52 minutes of commercials, on-air promos and public-service announcements during the three hours of prime time programming on the Big Four nets each night. The average commercial break in prime time is now just over 3 minutes long, up 41% from five years ago, PhaseOne said.
ABC ranked the highest in the study, with an average 54.6 minutes of commercial, PSAs and promos. CBS had the least amount of non-program time in the daypart, an average 50.8 minutes. Fox and NBC were in between. "Breaking through the clutter and getting a television ad noticed today is harder than ever," says Terry Villines, director of analysis for PhaseOne.