Fox owns the Super Bowl ratings record after all
from Jason Clinkscales, with YardBarker.com/www.yardbarker.com
Tuesday morning, Fox Sports announced that Nielsen revised the final viewership total for Super Bowl LVII (57) to 115.1 million viewers, making the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory over the Philadelphia Eagles the single most watched telecast of all-time.
Today, Nielsen restated the viewership for FOX Sports’ presentation of Super Bowl LVII as 115.1 million viewers – the most-watched Super Bowl in history. This revision is the product of a thorough review by Nielsen that revealed irregularities in the encoding that enables… pic.twitter.com/cZV5TysadX
— FOX Sports PR (@FOXSportsPR) May 2, 2023
In February, Fox initially said the game captured 113 million viewers across its broadcast network, Fox Deportes and digital streaming services such as Hulu and YouTube TV.
Though that total was considered a six-year high for ‘The Big Game,’ it had been the source of intense debate within the media industry. For starters, Fox believed that Nielsen miscounted a significant number of viewers. Additionally, out-of-home viewers were not included in the initial tally. One source went as far as issuing its own estimate, adding to the belief that the game was woefully undercounted.
Ratings revisions are not uncommon in the TV world, though the adjustments are relatively quick and minor. However, this particular revision came about when Nielsen discovered some problems in its coding that missed many out-of-home viewers as well as some who were streaming from home.
The Super Bowl problem was the latest salvo for TV networks in their battle against Nielsen over the years. The insights company was under fire due to measurement gaps and other irregularities that were found during the first year of the coronavirus pandemic, and it even lost an important industry accreditation that was only regained last month.
Every season the game – and potentially, the ratings record – moves between NBC, CBS and Fox, with ABC rejoining the Super Bowl rotation in 2026. Fox can now pat itself on the back for having the most watched program ever, but a highly competitive Super Bowl could break the record on The Weather Channel. Sports fans couldn’t care less about these industry squabbles as they are loyal to the game as opposed to its broadcaster.