It has been considered something of a trend that award-presenting shows in general have been in something of a decline with regards to viewership. There are several factors as to why that were so, some rooted in the political atmosphere of the US. The Video Music Awards (VMAs) of Viacom’s flagship cable channel MTV is no exception, as it has been tracking decreasing ratings over the past few years. In their case it might also be added that it simply is because MTV today is a rather different animal from the “Music Television” that it was in decades past. That will explain the dearth in ratings of the 2019 VMAs.
But as The Hollywood Reporter explains, despite this year being the third straight that the MTV Video Music Awards has registered an all-time ratings low not all of it has been bad news. The 2019 VMAs, held this Monday, August 26, in New Jersey for the first time in its history, may have only 1.93 million viewers and a rating of 0.9 to adult viewers aged 18-49 compared to 2018’s 2.25 million and 1.1 rating, but the decline had not been as sharp as from the years prior to 2018.
Whereas the conventional viewership for the VMAs has dwindled, somehow it managed to gain good numbers in terms of social media and online viewing. To wit, they have recorded an 85% uptick year to year in that sector leading up to the 2019 awards. An increase in viewership for older adults of the 25-54 age range was also noted, presumably due to comedian Sebastian Maniscalco being tapped as the VMAs host for this year. Then there was the presence of music stars favored by that particular generation such as Queen Latifah and (Video Vanguard Award winner that evening) Missy Elliot.
Aside from MTV itself, Viacom saw to it that the 2019 VMAs were simulcast on all its major channels such as VH1, Paramount Network, BET, MTV2, CMT, MTV Classic, Nickelodeon and many others. That still did not quite help with the TV viewership numbers and ratings as already stated beforehand, but as it turns out the figures in question were at least better than the 2019 editions of the MTV Movie and TV Awards, Billboard Music Awards, Tony Awards and Teen Choice Awards. While the trend of awards show still look to be a downward slid for the most part, for the VMAs at least they have managed to find a new avenue for support.
Image courtesy of MTV.com