January 28, 2013

The Musial Funeral TV Ratings Are In!

The ratings are in...and according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Stan Musial's funeral wasn't a hit (get it?) for the local stations in St. Louis that opted to cover the event Saturday.

Wait, hold on. 

You mean to tell me that a televised funeral for a baseball player, albeit one that was universally loved, wasn't a ratings smash? 

I mean, regardless of how much St. Louis loved "The Man"...he hasn't played in the bigs since BEFORE President Kennedy was assassinated and, it's likely, that people living in the shadow of the Gateway Arch had better things to do on a Saturday, right?

Ugh.

In all seriousness, this is what kills me about the television sometimes.  You don't air something like Stan Musial's funeral to get ratings...you do it to sell advertising.

Correction. 

You do it because it just might be the right thing to do for your viewers.  It's called "viewer benefit" and my guess is that all of Cardinals Nation (or whatever they call themselves) had Musial on their minds.

Matter of fact, getting ratings "wasn’t (the) focus" for local stations KTVI and KPLR.  The news director for the FOX/CW duopoly pointed to wall-to-wall coverage being the main focus and, if you've been paying attention...that's pretty much been the marching orders for every station in St. Louis.

But, back to those numbers.

The Musial proceedings were shown live on five local television outlets...with a combined rating of 12.7.  What does that mean?  It means that 12.7 percent of the homes in the St. Louis DMA tuned in to watch the funeral as it happened.

In case you were wondering, KTVI was tops with a 6.0 rating.  Now, across the Mississippi River (and nearly the entire state of Illinois), Comcast SportsNet delivered its highest regular season ratings for a Chicago Blackhawks broadcast on Sunday night.

That rating?  6.31.

So, really, were the Musial numbers all that terrible for a Saturday afternoon?  And, really, does it matter?

Now, forget everything I just wrote so you can watch the great Bob Costas talk about a true legend.



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