PBS NewsHour up +10.9% in HH, +13.8% in P2 for 2015-16 Broadcast Season

Washington, DC (November 8, 2016) — PBS NewsHour’s household rating (0.7) during the 2015-16 season increased 10.9% over the previous television season, while the nightly news broadcast, which last month completed its 40th year on broadcast, had a P2+ rating of 0.3 that increased 13.8%, according to Nielsen NPower data. Co-anchored by managing editors Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff and ranked #1 overall as the most credible print and television news source according to the most recent Erdos & Morgan Opinion Leaders Study, NewsHour’s growth on broadcast coincides during a year that included a significant increase in special programming, including:

  • Primetime coverage of the Republican National Convention and Democratic National Convention produced in partnership with NPR that reached 29.7 million total viewers, a 3% improvement on the 28.8 million viewers for the 2012 coverage on PBS;
  • The PBS NewsHour Democratic Primary Debate between Secretary Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders produced in partnership with Facebook that reached a combined 8.03 million viewers on PBS stations nationwide and simulcast on CNN;
  • Town hall specials including with President Obama in June 2016 and America After Charleston on race, politics and inequality at Charleston’s Circular Congregational Church in September 2015;
  • The 2015 Peabody Award winning series Desperate Journey on the refugee and migrant crisis facing Europe.

NewsHour’s online efforts grew +18% with more than 43 million users and +8% with more than 100 million pageviews from October 2015 through September 2016 compared to the same months of the year prior. Considerable efforts were focused on enterprising reporting projects including “The End of AIDS?,” a six-part broadcast and digital series on various worldwide efforts to curtail the HIV/AIDS epidemic and NewsHour’s Science Bedtime Stories.

Total video views on Facebook reached nearly 200 million (at 199.6 million) while 30-second views approached 50 million (at 46.9 million) from October 2015 – September 2016. Likes for NewsHour’s Facebook page grew more than +102% at 945,000 as of September 2016, compared to the year prior. Most viewed content on NewsHour’s Facebook page includes a clip of President Obama addressing the Second Amendment and gun control following the NewsHour town hall that has been viewed more than 46 million times and a segment from NewsHour’s Facebook-first Brief but Spectacular series on growing old that has been viewed more than 6.9 million times on Facebook.

Video viewing on NewsHour’s YouTube Channel and internal video player COVE was up +143% at 89.9 million total views October 2015 – September 2016. Watch time on NewsHour’s YouTube channel surpassed 650 million minutes, up +273%, while YouTube subscribers closed September 2016 at 274,000, up +92% over the previous year.

NewsHour’s updated app – rereleased in September 2015 and created for both iOS and Android devices – was downloaded more than 115,000 times and had more than 14.5 million page views. New publishing platforms including Apple News had more than 600,000 new favorites added and Google AMP had more than 630,000 pageviews. NewsHour also added Safari notifications, ending the year with more than 215,000 new subscribers.

In addition to NewsHour’s 2015 Peabody Award for its Desperate Journey series, additional NewsHour reporting and journalists were recognized with industry awards:

  • PBS NewsHour co-anchor and managing editor and Washington Week moderator and managing editor Gwen Ifill was named the recipient of the 2016 John Chancellor Award for Excellence in Journalism.
  • PBS NewsHour science correspondent Miles O’Brien’s February 2015 two-part series on advancements in robotic arms technology earned a 2015 AAAS Kavli Silver Award in the television spot news/feature reporting category of the science journalism competition.
  • “Food, Glorious Food,” a collaboration between PBS NewsHour and NPR by Alison Aubrey and Mary Beth Durkin, was named winner of the 2016 James Beard Award.
  • The PBS NewsHour segment “Escape From Terror” by special correspondent Marcia Biggs was selected as Grand Winner of a 2016 Gracies Award in the Hard News Feature Category and earned a Bronze World Medal in the New York Festival’s World’s Best TV and Films competition.
  • The PBS NewsHour segment “Fighting ISIS” by special correspondent Marcia Biggs was selected as the 1st place winner of a 2016 National Headliner Award in the ‘Continuing Coverage of a Major News Event’ category.
  • PBS NewsHour co-anchors and managing editors Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff were honored with the Women’s Media Center’s Pat Mitchell Lifetime Achievement Award at the Center’s 10th anniversary gala in New York City.
  • The PBS NewsHour set unveiled in July 2015 was named the 2015 National Set of the Year by NewscastStudio.