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War: It is not cricket

By , agencyfaqs! | In | April 02, 2003
The war in Iraq started on March 20. It was also the day of the India-Kenya semi-final match. Who won? Cricket or war? An analysis


March 20, 2003, will go down in the history of civilization as the day when the second chapter of the Gulf War unfolded on television screens across the world. Much like the Kuwait crisis in 1990-91, the current conflict in Iraq seems to be a boon to TV news reporters and channels who have spared no efforts in presenting a day-to-day account of the crisis, in many ways making it a media war - a spectacle literally for public consumption. How did viewers in India react to the conflict, which broke out on the same day when the national cricket team clashed with Kenya for a berth in the finals of the World Cup 2003?

A quick recap of TAM figures for the week of March 16-22 (Target audience: C&S four plus, all-India) highlights that the first half of the India-Kenya semi-final on MAX tops the ratings chart, that is the C&S Top 100, with a TVR of 17.7 while the second half of the same match enjoys a score of 13.7. While none of the news channel came close to striking distance, a quick scan of their channel share figures shows the war in Iraq did bring some good news for news channels.

Taking into account the channel share of all news channels in week 12 (March 16-22), the figure stood at 8.3 per cent, which is double the channel share for the previous week, which stood at 4.5 per cent. Individually too, there are significant gains recorded by news channels that week. Aaj Tak, for instance, had a channel share of 4.0 per cent, which is double the figure in the previous week, when it stood at 2.3 per cent. STAR News, ZEE News, BBC World, CNN and CNBC also recorded better channel shares in week 12, compared with previous weeks. Percentage figures for week 12 are as follows: STAR News - 0.8 (week 11 - 0.5), ZEE News - 1.5 (week 11 - 1.1), BBC World - 0.6 (week 11 - 0.1), CNN - 0.5 (week 11 - 0.09) and CNBC - 0.1 (week 11 - 0.06).

In reach terms as well, news channels performed better in week 12. Aaj Tak, the leader in the news genre, recorded a figure of 46.7 per cent (week 11 - 40.9 per cent), while STAR News stood at 32.8 per cent (week 11 - 28 per cent). ZEE News recorded a figure of 34.4 per cent (week 11 - 30.3 per cent), BBC World stood at 26 per cent (week 11 - 10.6 per cent), CNN had a reach of 15.5 per cent (week 11 - 5.4 per cent), and CNBC stood at 13 per cent (week 11 - 7.4 per cent). (Source: TAM Media Research; TA: Males, 15 years and above in C&S homes across SEC ABC in the six metros of Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad).

Clearly, the war helped improve the statistics of the news channels - both Indian, and more importantly, the international ones (CNN and BBC) in week 12. © 2003 agencyfaqs!

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