Do Os­cars and Gram­mys in­di­cate awards shows los­ing ap­peal?

The Times Herald (Norristown, PA) - - LOCAL NEWS -

NEW YORK » Af­ter Nielsen’s bru­tal morn­ing-af­ter re­port cards for the Os­cars and Gram­mys this win­ter, it’s worth ask­ing whether tele­vi­sion view­ers are los­ing in­ter­est in watch­ing the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try’s most prom­i­nent peo­ple cel­e­brate them­selves.

The Academy Awards reached 26.5 mil­lion view­ers, eas­ily a record low for what is of­ten the sec­ond most-watched pro­gram of the year af­ter the Su­per Bowl. A month ear­lier, Grammy view­er­ship slipped be­low the 20 mil­lion mark, down 24 per­cent from 2017 and the mu­sic awards show’s small­est au­di­ence since 2009. Open­ing night of the Win­ter Olympics had a big­ger crowd than both shows.

That’s alarm­ing news for net­works that have con­sid­ered ma­jor awards shows to be re­li­able, DVRproof live events. Ex­perts sug­gest the shows aren’t im­mune to the same forces de­press­ing view­er­ship across all of tele­vi­sion, with some spe­cific fac­tors that hurt the Os­cars and Gram­mys this year.

By the time the Os­cars are done, view­ers who fol­low these things are prob­a­bly ex­hausted from awards. Be­sides the Em­mys, Golden Globes and Gram­mys, the cal­en­dar is filled with the ac­tors, pro­duc­ers and di­rec­tors guild awards, the MTV Movie Awards, the Bill­board mu­sic awards, the iHeart Ra­dio mu­sic awards, the Amer­i­can Mu­sic Awards, com­pet­ing coun­try mu­sic or­ga­ni­za­tion awards... You get the idea.

There’s lit­tle novel about celebri­ties stand­ing on stage with a piece of hard­ware, thank­ing God, their spouses and agents.

Big awards shows used to be one of the few chances to see celebri­ties out­side of their work. But the en­ter­tain­ment news shows make that com­mon-place, too, said Tom O’Neil, edi­tor of Gold­, a web site that dishes

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