As the results of the elections in Tamil Nadu and Kerala trickled in on May 19, political pundits and news anchors on leading English channels were busy either patting their backs for predicting the polls right, or trying to explain with the help of graphics what was happening in these two states.
But how many people really watched English news channels? Do people in TN and Kerala really bother about what's being said in these studios?
According to data provided to The News Minute by Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India, an industry body that measures television viewership, Chennai seems to have preferred Tamil news channels way above English news channels.
On May 19, all the English news channels (Times Now, India Today Television, NDTV 24x7, CNN News18, News X, News 9 and BBC World News) together had 2.2 lakh impressions for the entire TV viewing population (from 4 years of age.)
On the other hand, all Tamil news channels put together had 1.3 crore impressions. (Sun News, Seithigal, Puthiya Thalaimurai, Thanthi TV, Polimer News, Jaya Plus, News 7 Tamil, Sathiyam TV and Raj News 24x7)
Though, the English news channels were clearly not the preferred choice for the general Chennai audience, in the specific English news market, Times Now was the clear leader across India with 2.5 lakh impressions.
CNN-New 18 was number 2 with 0.87 lakh impressions while India Today came third with 0.62 lakh impressions.
While NDTV had 0.42 lakh impressions, NewsX got 0.16 lakh impressions and Bengaluru-based News9 got 0.15 impressions.
Overall viewership of English news channels grew nearly four times as compared to the figures of the previous Thursday of the month.
(Impressions is the number of individuals of a target audience who viewed an "Event", averaged across minutes).