This year’s Oscars broadcast saw its worst viewership in the history of the show, sending many in the industry scrambling to pinpoint a cause for the drop.
But what if it’s not that simple?
With a nearly 20% decline from last year’s numbers, the Nielsen results for 2018 Oscar viewers capped out at 26.5 million. But ratings for many major television events – not just the Academy Awards – have been steadily declining for years, so this isn’t necessarily an isolated incident. Causes for the downward trend have been attributed to streaming, increased options for content and a resistance to live, commercial-riddled events.
Reasons aside, this year’s viewership sparked new concerns regarding what The Academy needs to do to keep a pulse going.
What do you think needs to be done in order to make the Oscars more appealing to a wider audience? Call 866.893.5722.
Robert Thompson, professor of television, radio and film and founding director of the Bleier Center for Television and Pop Culture at Syracuse University