Broadcast 'Premiere Week' Viewership Falls into 'La Brea'-Sized Sink Hole, Down 53% Decade to Decade (Chart of the Day)

NBC series 'La Brea'
(Image credit: NBCUniversal)

Representing only 28% of overall U.S. TV usage in August, according to Nielsen, streaming may not yet be the dominant video consumption medium, but it certainly seems to be on the way. 

And that usage seems to be coming right off the plate of broadcast (whittled to a 24% share of the August pie.) 

The latest Nielsen data for the Big Four broadcast networks' biggest yearly programming event, fall "premiere week," elegantly showcases the decay. (Hat tip to LightShed Partners' principal Richard Greenfield for sharing this graphic on Twitter Wednesday.) 

Premiere week ratings (Image credit: Nielsen)

Collectively, comparing this week's Nielsen performance to fall 2011, ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC have lost 53% of their overall audience, and 72% of their most valuable viewership demographic, adults 18-49. 

CBS has taken the biggest hit, losing 81% of its 18-49 audience. NBC, which captured a now impressive 6.2 million viewers for the debut of its post-apocalyptic freshman series La Brea Tuesday night, has made out the best, while still losing half its audience in the key demo. 

No, TV ain't dying. Far from it. But all the biggest programming events will soon be streamed first. 

Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!