Monday, February 28, 2011

Oprah’s New Channel Struggles to Pull in the Viewers

Oprah Winfrey is finding out just how hard it is to build an out-of-the-way channel into a television destination.

OWN, her two-month-old channel, is attracting fewer viewers than the obscure channel it replaced, Discovery Health. At any given time this month, there have been about 135,000 people watching OWN, according to the Nielsen Company, and only about 45,000 of those people are women ages 25 to 54, the demographic that the channel is focusing on.

Those ratings levels, down about 10 percent from Discovery Health’s levels last year, are being carefully watched by people who would like to rebuild cable channels around other celebrities, and by investors who worry that OWN is a drag on Discovery’s stock.

Ms. Winfrey and her partner, Discovery Communications, have preached patience, especially because she will have a minimal presence on the channel until after “The Oprah Winfrey Show” ends its remarkable run in September. Until then, OWN is nurturing shows like “Our America,” a series of documentaries hosted by Lisa Ling, which last week became the first show to be renewed by the channel.

Read more here Oprah’s New Channel Struggles to Pull in the Viewers


Anonymous said...

I must admit, I have not been drawned to the network due to the lack of presence for people of color. Refresh my memory, what shows are geared towards the Black community?

Josh said...
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Anonymous said...

You couldn't be serious in thinking she gives a shit about attracting the black community when the channel is obscure and needs to be paid for on a cable package above basic.

Let's be real. The black demographic aren't exactly the one's she's assuming will have access to her channel.