Monday, March 08, 2010

Fake Statistic Watch.

How many people watch the Oscars? I don't know anyone who does yet the most cited figure for the events ratings is:
This is complete and utter bullshit that narcissistic Hollywood types tell themselves to convince everyone that the world is transfixed by them.

First of all that is more than 1 in 7 of the world's population, and when you consider that many people on the planet are from countries where Hollywood is not the dominant film producer or where English isn't the first language or where televisions are rare or from places in really inconvenient time zones then that eliminates a most of the planet.

Furthermore even in the strongest market for the event, the USA, scarcely more than 1 in 10 of the population watch it.

Finally there is no organisation that provides viewing estimates for international events anyway (even for genuinely popular events like the World Cup the supposed viewing figures are nonsense).

Anyway with only aroung 30 million viewers in the USA it is highly unlikely that the global figure is over 100 million let alone anywhere near a billion.


Anonymous said...

I've been watching bits of it.
Who cares that they exagerate. They are show biz.
Reality is not for them.

Matthew said...

I woudn't think it has much to do with Hollywood and their narcissism, as par for the course for this type of thing. WhenI nvestigaged the Boat Race's claim of 400m, I found it was probably 5m (possibly 80m tops, but sceptical about even that) and Premiership Football collapsed when it was made non-free-to-air.

The Oscars probably are free-to-air, but as you say there's no reason to believe the proportion watching is higher anywhere else than in the US,a nd almost certainly a lot lower.

The other classic for this is Formula One.

Ross said...

Matthew- in your post you say:

"Often these are massively over-inflated by sponsors, sometimes even just referring to the number of TV Sets that could "

Yes, one of the most ridiculous examples of that trick is the Rugby World Cup who claim that the total viewing figures for the tournament is several billion, when in fact the final gets around 30 million and most games considerably fewer than that.

Furor Teutonicus said...

How many people watch the Oscars?

Never heard of them, but I watch the Simpsons.