Happy faces at 30 Rock today as Nielsen revised its evening news ratings numbers for the last week of September, which previously gave ABC’s “World News Tonight with David Muir” his first total viewers victory over perennial winner “NBC Nightly News'” Brian Williams.
The revised numbers put Williams back ahead, restoring his winning streak in total viewers at 265 weeks. The updated Nielsen numbers shows Williams drew 8,283,000 million viewers compared to 8,113,000 million for Muir; a 170,000 viewer difference. Muir’s broadcast won in the 25-54 younger demographic, 2,065,000 vs. 1,942,000 for “Nightly”; a 123,000 edge for ABC. Muir, who took over the anchor chair for Diane Sawyer on Sept. 1, has consistently been winning the demo.
“We haven’t seen those numbers yet, but this in no way changes the obvious momentum at World News,” ABC News SVP for Communications Jeffrey Schneider told TheWrap. “We’ve always said this is a very long game and we’re proud to put on the best broadcast every night with first rate journalists and information that helps our viewers better understand the world.”
“We are pleased that the corrected numbers confirm that NBC Nightly News is the #1 news broadcast in America, and has been for the last 265 weeks,” an NBC spokesperson told TheWrap. “We remain, first and foremost, committed to our viewers and bringing them a broadcast with credible, authoritative news they can trust.”
The revision comes as part of a Nielsen’s ongoing revisions after the ratings agency admitted last week to a significant technical screw up, acknowledging its numbers have been off since March. The screw-up doesn’t affect cable or local TV channels and Nielsen will be continuing to issue revisions dating back to August 13 for the remainder of this month.