Olympics Ratings Drop; Still Dominant
Viewers may have been overly saturated with the Olympics. Thursday night's coverage on NBC saw its audience decrease a whopping 39 percent versus last Thursday night among viewers 18-49. Its 22.4 million total viewers was the lowest number yet for the 30th Summer Games. (One of the reasons for the lower viewer figures is that in some markets it was competing against local coverage of preseason NFL football.) That said, the Olympics telecast nevertheless remained by far the highest rated program of the night, as it peaked in the 9 30 p.m. half hour with 24.59 million viewers, according to preliminary Nielsen overnight figures. By contrast the highest-rated programs broadcast by any other network were CBS's The Big Bang Theory , which drew 6.90 million viewers at 8 00 p.m. and Big Brother, which drew 6.32 million viewers in the 9 00 p.m. half hour.