"For years, it’s been said that Internet use would cut into the time U.S. consumers spend watching television. Today, those premonitions are beginning to reach the tipping point. TV ratings have dropped by 50 percent over the last decade. Goldman Sachs recently called the decline “the sharpest pace on record.”
The firm found that ratings in the 18-to-49-year-old demographic – the key group targeted by advertisers – fell by 17 percent last wintercompared with the winter before. ABC, NBC and Fox were most affected, with decreased ad revenues cutting into profits. (Fox had to get distributors to pay higher subscriber fees to pull a profit). But even highest-rated CBS lost 3 percent of its 18-to-49 audience this season, The New York Times reported in April.
Morgan Stanley analyst Benjamin Swinburne had released charts at the beginning of the year showing the ratings drop, claiming declines are a function of income level..."