Who won the 2010 TV ratings?

By David Knox

Nov 28, 2010

Seven, Nine and TEN are all claiming victories -- but who is the real winner?

The 2010 ratings season is over, and what a year it was!

MasterChef Australia: The winner's announcement was the year's most popular TV episode, pulling in a stunning audience of 4.03 million viewers. It was followed by MasterChef Australia: Finale Night (the same event) with 3.6m viewers.

Next up were various broadcasts of the first AFL Grand Final at 3.36m (presentations), 2.77m for the match, and 2.7m for the Melbourne Cup.

More sport filled out the top ten shows with the AFL Grand Final re-match, State of Origin and Underbelly's first episode attracting 2.35m viewers.

Declaring a network as the winner for the year is a lot more difficult, with the three commercial networks all using different methodologies to trumpet their victories.

Seven says it is the number one network in Total People, News and Public Affairs, Breakfast Television, Primetime, Advertising Revenue and Overall. It claims to have won the year with a 28.7 percent network share over Nine's 27.7 percent share and TEN's 21.2 percent share.

Nine agrees with those figures (although it notes TEN is 21.1 percent) but claims to have won the advertising-friendly demographics of 16-39, 18-49 and 25-54. TEN also says it has won 16-39 and 25-54 but measures these just on Primary channels between 6pm-10:30pm instead of all five channels between 6pm-midnight. Talk about confusing.

TEN is also the only network to deduct both Olympics and Commonwealth Games from figures which is common practice for special event programming. Seven even included Easter non-ratings. So in effect, nobody is issuing information with equal measures.

What is clear is that Seven has won Total People, Nine has won the Advertiser Demographics, and TEN winds up with the top rating show of the year.

In digital channels GO! has led the way, consolidating its position with a 3.8 percent share over 7TWO's 3.4 percent and 7mate's 2.7 percent. At the other end of the spectrum are ABC News 24 and ABC3 both on 0.5 percent -- however the latter ends its daily broadcasts, denying it an equal playing field.

TEN has also lagged behind by not having a third channel on air. Eleven will launch on January 11.

Top shows for ABC1 were Gruen Nation, The Gruen Transfer, Yes We Canberra! and Midsomer Murders while SBS' best were Man vs. Wild and the FIFA World Cup.

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  • carltonues Dec 05, 2010

    I have to say that channel nine is the biggest looser the only shows I watch on that network are the football underbelly two and a half men and big bang although GO I watch another four to five regulary, channel seven and ten are my preferred deffinetly favorites being house neighbors football good wife burn notice Dexter NCIS ncis la modern family glee 7pm rush and probably a few more criminal minds brothers and sisters rafters and many more.

  • amazing_race Dec 03, 2010

    Channel Seven is vastly more enjoyable than any of the other channels. I watch shows The Amazing Race, Criminal Minds, Desperate Housewives, Brothers & Sisters, Minute To Win It, How I Met Your Mother, Beauty & The Geek, Family Guy and True Beauty whenever they are on, while the only Channel Ten shows I watch are NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles and Lie To Me and the only Channel Nine shows I watch are Survivor and Cops: LAC.

  • tko6070 Dec 02, 2010

    the major networks (excluding abc &sbs;) are brain cell atrophy. the only show I've watched is reruns of the sopranos (7two) which have no contenuity with the time slots all over the place.

  • Super_Dooper Nov 30, 2010

    Who cares anyway? Ratings are a sham, they are not representative of the nation at all. There are only approximately 5000 ratings boxes to determine what 20 million people watch. Unreliable much?

  • saltyblood Nov 29, 2010

    lol, I barely watch channel 7 anymore spend most of my time on nine and Go

  • PiperPrueLover4 Nov 29, 2010

    Go Channel 7!!

    I've never understood the draw of Masterchef...