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April 23, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

The big news coming out of the Nielsen ratings for last week had little to do with primetime programming, which remained “same ol’ same ol’,” and everything to do with the evening news, where, for the first time in more than six years, ABC World News with Diane Sawyer topped NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams in the key (for nightly newscasts) 25-54 age group for the second consecutive week. The margin of victory last week climbed to 85,000 viewers from 12,000 the previous week and came despite the fact that NBC News increased its audience versus the same week last year. NBC News remained ahead among total viewers, however, attracting 8.6 million viewers to ABC’s 7.9 million. (The CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley trailed with 6.3 million). Oddly, NBC also prevailed among the primetime money group of 18-49 year-olds. Commenting on those results, the New York Times said today, “It is rare in television that a show will have a sizable margin in total viewers, win in the 18-to-49 group, and yet lose in the 25-to-54 group. But winning in that group is essential in news programming.” For the week overall in primetime, CBS again led the field with a 5.9 household rating and a 9 share. ABC placed second with a 4.1/7, followed by NBC with a 3.5/6. Fox trailed with a 2.5/4.