Ask any television journalist and they will tell you that Election Day beats just about anything else, in terms of news coverage. Why? It’s all in the numbers. Over the years television viewership has significantly increased on counting day, and the 2016 Assembly Polls in Tamil Nadu was no different.
According to data provided to The News Minute by Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India, viewership for Tamil channels increased by 215 per cent on May 19, counting day. While Tamil channels overall got 89.5 million impressions on the day of the election results, the previous week garnered 28.3 million impressions.
In a highly crowded and politicised media landscape, private news channel Puthiya Thalaimurai was the most watched in Tamil Nadu with 20.3 million impressions. Polimer News was a close second, notching up 19.3 million impressions. Thanthi TV followed with 17.2 million impressions.
Interestingly, in the race for viewership, AIADMK mouthpiece Jaya Plus managed to beat the Kalanithi Maran-owned Sun News and DMK mouthpiece Kalaignar Seithigal by over 5 million and 6 million impressions respectively.
News 7 managed to get 4 million impressions on counting day, while Sathiyam TV and Raj News received 3 million and 1 million respectively.
BARC’s ratings for regional channels are based on 4+ individuals, meaning those above the age of 4, the entire family. An impression is the number of individuals of a target audience who viewed an “Event”, averaged across minutes.