For the first time ever, Nielsen ratings are meaningful in Charlottesville, and it looks like NBC29 is tough to beat. During sweeps, the longtime local station had an average of 11,886 viewers. WCAV (CBS) had just 656, and WVAW (ABC) just 534. The 6pm newscast numbers are particularly strong — 32,000 viewers for NBC29, 499 for WCAV and 354 for WVAW (showing only Seinfeld at that time).
The general manager of the two upstart stations points out, rightly, that they’ve only been around for six months, and haven’t had a chance to make any proper headway in the market just yet. I’d figured that there’d be a certain number of disaffected WVIR viewers looking to get their news elsewhere, but I thought there’d be more than 500. The good news, though, is that advertising on the two new stations is really cheap.
Lisa Provence had the skinny in the soon-to-be last week’s Hook.