When we asked readers last week why they chose pay TV, the most popular response was not to have pay TV at all. But amongst those who were paying, the chief reason was sporting access — a finding which matches up with the ratings for pay TV generally.
Our favourite TV blog TV Tonight publishes a weekly summary of pay TV ratings. The most recent set (linked below) demonstrates just how important sport is in attracting audiences: the top 16 programs were all live sporting broadcasts. And the top-rating non-sports program attracted just 54,000 viewers — a difficult sell when free-to-air broadcasters can easily attract half a million viewers to just about anything, even in an era of declining ratings.
Pay TV Ratings: Week 19 [TV Tonight]