Audience Results - Television
While funding results in this annual report illustrate activities in the 2018-2019 fiscal year, audience results reflect the most recently completed broadcast year, specifically, 2017-2018.
Overall English-language Viewing Trends
Canadian vs. foreign programs
Domestically-produced programs accounted for 35% of full-day viewing in English-language television, down three percentage point from the previous year and a five-year low. During peak-viewing hours, 32% of English-language television viewing was devoted to Canadian programming, down five points from the previous year and also a five-year low. These lows coincide with CRTC policy changes which took effect in the 2017-2018 broadcast year, which lifted Canadian-produced exhibition requirements for specialty broadcasters in prime time.
CMF-funded genres vs. other genres
Overall viewing to English-language programs, both domestic and foreign produced, in the four CMF-supported genres (Children’s & Youth, Documentary, Drama and Variety & Performing Arts) was 38% for full day, down one point from last year and a five-year low. The peak hour share to CMF-supported genres’ also dropped one point to 40% compared to the previous year, another five-year low. There were marginal declines in peak hours share to VAPA, Documentary and C&Y programming, and a commensurate slight increase in share to reality programs.
CMF-funded programs vs. non-funded Canadian programs
When examining full-day viewership to Canadian programs in only the CMF-supported genres, share to CMF-funded programs dropped five points to 46%, a seven-year low. Much of this decline can attributed to the reduction in airings of Just for Laughs (VAPA), lower tuning to CMF-funded Documentary projects, and large declines in viewing to C&Y due to reductions in commissioned projects. In peak-viewing hours, the share of viewing to CMF-funded programs versus other Canadian programming rose by one point to 55% (changes to Canadian exhibition requirements not appearing to have a direct impact on the ratio of CMF vs non-CMF Canadian projects aired in peak hours).
Overall Viewing of English-language programs in CMF-supported Genres
In 2017-2018, CMF-financed English-language content dropped to 10-year lows in total hours tuned. CMF share of viewing during peak periods also dipped to 10-year lows. This decline of over 30% was largely driven by the aforementioned changes in CRTC policy with respect to content exhibition requirements by specialty broadcasters, as the decline in overall tuning due to the migration of consumption to non-linear platforms was only on the order of 5% this year compared to last.
In Children’s & Youth, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped by twelve share points to 25% , while viewing to foreign projects increased by ten share points to 63%. In peak viewing hours, viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped by thirteen share points to 31%, while the share to non-CMF-funded Canadian projects in peak hours increased by nine points. CMF-funded hours tuned in Children’s & Youth programming has decreased by over 65% since 2012-2013. The decline might also partly be reflective of a steep drop in hours of C&Y content produced in 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 fiscal years (2016-2017 was down 35% from 2014-2015). This genre is also one of the most susceptible to changing consumption patterns due to new technologies, with children’s content readily accessible on alternate platforms including tablets and OTT services that are favoured by younger consumers.
In Documentary, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded content dropped by one share point to 22%. In peak-viewing hours, share to CMF-funded content was 21%, down four points from its 5-year high last year, while share to foreign content increased by five points to 53%. Much of the decline in tuning to CMF-funded projects appears to be driven by a near equivalent proportional decline in content aired in prime time (again likely a result of changes to CRTC exhibition quotas).
In Drama, the full-day share of viewing to CMF-funded content declined by two points to 6%, a 5-year low. Meanwhile shares to viewing in peak hours declined by one share point to 7%, another 5-year low and furthering a downward trend observed since 2013-2014. There was a marked reduction in the number of episodes of CMF content aired (down 45% from last year), although much of the impact in tuning would have been partially mitigated by the fact that the majority of THT to drama is still derived from conventional services for which CRTC exhibition quotas were not changed. This would explain why shares, while still in decline, were not as heavily impacted in this genre relative to the others.
In Variety & Performing Arts, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded content plummeted by 17 share points to 11%, a record low, while during peak hours, viewing to CMF-funded programs declined by 14 share points to 7%, also a record low. The removal of much of the catalogue of Just for Laughs along with fewer airings of successful series such as Still Standing were primary drivers in this decline. It should be noted that there is limited amounts of CMF-financed VAPA programming produced. As such, even minor adjustments in the amount of programming exhibited can have magnified effects in terms of share changes.
Top Performing CMF-funded English-Language Programs
The following is a list of the Top 10 English-language programs funded by the CMF and aired during the 2017-2018 broadcast year.
Six CMF-funded programs airing in the 2017-2018 broadcast year achieved average audiences of over 1 million viewers. Seven of the Top Ten programs were from the Drama genre, achieving audiences that ranged from just 782,000 to 1.6 million viewers. One Documentary and two Variety & Performing Arts programs ranging in audience from 1.0 to 1.4 million viewers made the Top Ten list.
The top performing CMF-funded English-language program, The Indian Detective averaged close to 1.6 million viewers for its 4-episode run. Next was the Gord Downie documentary Long Time Running at 1.4 million, followed by Murdoch Mysteries at 1.2 million. The top domestic programs overall were CFL Grey Cup on TSN at 4.1 million, World Junior Hockey Playoffs (2 episodes) at 2.8 million and PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games Prime Time at 2.2 million.
By way of comparison, the top performing foreign series in a CMF-supported genre, The Big Bang Theory, attracted an average audience of 3.3 million viewers during the regular season, while two other drama series (The Good Doctor and Young Sheldon) delivered over 2 million viewers on average, equal to last year but down from six two years before. For added context, the program with the largest audience overall in 2017-2018 was NFL Super Bowl at 4.9 million viewers.
|Rank||Broadcaster||Program Title||Day||Time||CMF Genre||# Telecasts||Viewers Age 2+ Average Minute Audience (000)|
|1||CTV||The Indian Detective||Thu||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||4||1,552|
|2||CTV||Long Time Running||Fri||8:00pm - 9:36pm||Documentary||1||1,382|
|3||CBC||Murdoch Mysteries||Mon||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Drama||20||1,228|
|4||CBC||RCAF New Year's Eve Special||Sun||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,210|
|5||Global||Private Eyes||Sun||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||9||1,098|
|6||CBC||Ron James The High Road (NYE Special)||Sun||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,016|
|7||CTV||Cardinal||Thu||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||6||972|
|8||CTV||The Disappearance||Sun||9:00 - 10:00pm||Drama||6||884|
|9||CBC||Rick Mercer Report||Tue||8:00pm - 8:30pm||Drama||22||848|
|10||CBC||Frankie Drake Mysteries||Mon||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||11||782|
Source: CMF Research (Numeris) 2017-2018 Broadcast Year, Original Airings Only
Overall French-language Viewing Trends
Canadian vs. foreign programs
Canadian programs continued to account for the majority of viewing in the French-language market with a 58% share of full-day viewing, down one percentage point from the previous year. However, 2017-2018 tied with 2015-2016 for the lowest share of viewing to Canadian content observed since the CMF began tracking data in 2005-2006. In peak hours the share of viewing to Canadian programs in 2017-2018 declined by four points to 58%, another all-time low since 2005-2006 and a further illustration of the gradual increase in tuning to foreign programming in the French market.
Additionally, the French viewing market is continuing to see declines in overall viewing similar to what was experienced in the English market several years ago with the advent of new non-linear viewing platforms. Overall total hours tuned to French television declined by more than 6% in 2017-2018 compared to the previous year and over 11% compared to two years ago.
CMF-funded genres vs. other genres
Share of viewing to CMF-supported genres in the French-language market was 40% for full-day and 45% for peak hour viewing in 2017-2018. Shares to the Children’s & Youth category for full-day viewing dropped by one point in 2017-2018 to just 3%. In peak periods, ne point share increases were posted in both Documentary and Drama (with a 24% share in Drama being a 5-year high).
CMF-funded programs vs. non-funded Canadian programs only
When examining viewership exclusively to Canadian content in CMF-supported genres, CMF-funded content captured a 58% share of full-day viewing, identical to 2016-2017 and relatively consistent over the past five years. In peak hours, CMF-funded content captured a 72% share, an all-time record high since the CMF began tracking this data in 2005-2006.
Overall Viewing of French-language programs in CMF-supported Genres
For French-language content in the CMF-supported genres, there was a decrease of one percentage point in full-day share of viewing to CMF-funded content compared to last year. During peak hours, there was also a one point drop in share to CMF-funded content due to an increase in foreign content viewing during peak hours.
In Children’s & Youth, the share of full-day viewing to CMF-funded content dropped by four points to 46%, a five-year low. Both Foreign and non-CMF Canadian programs rose by two points each since last year. However, in peak viewing hours the share of CMF-funded Children’s & Youth programs rose by twelve points to 61%, this significant increase placed it just one percentage point away from the five-year high of 62% experienced in 2013-2014.
In Documentary, full-day share viewing to CMF-funded content grew by two points from the previous year to 22%, while peak hour viewing to CMF-funded content increased by five points to 26%. Overall, CMF-financed Documentaries scheduled during peak hours saw their highest share percentage since the CMF began tracking this data in 2005-2006.
In Drama, full-day viewing to CMF-funded programs remained at 23%. During peak hours, the share of viewing to CMF-funded Dramas also remained consistent with last year at 42%, which was a record five-year high. Viewing to foreign produced dramas increased by four points in peak hours, while viewing to Canadian non-CMF-funded projects dropped in both full-day viewing by two points and peak viewing by four points. Share percentages notwithstanding, there was a decrease in the duration of prime-time hours scheduled (down 7.1%) to CMF-financed drama during peak periods, but a very modest increase of tuning (1.2 %) from last year.
In Variety & Performing Arts, full-day viewing to CMF-funded programs dropped six share points to 81%. In peak-hours, viewing to CMF-funded Variety & Performing Arts also dropped by eight points to 82%. Both are five-year lows. Viewing to non-CMF-funded Canadian content saw an increase of two share points in both full-day and peak hour viewing in 2017-2018, while share of viewing to foreign VAPA projects in peak periods tripled to 9%.
Top Performing CMF-funded French-Language Programs
The following is a list of the Top 10 French-language programs funded by the CMF which aired during the 2017-2018 broadcast year.
All titles on the Top 10 list achieved audiences of more than 1 million viewers, a further nine titles have also met this criterion, bringing the number of CMF programs with over one million viewers to nineteen in total. Continuing the trend for the past few years, Bye Bye 2017, was the top overall program in 2017-2018.
Six of the Top 10 programs were from the Variety & Performing Arts genre, achieving audiences that ranged from 1.3 to 4.1 million viewers. The remaining five programs on the Top 10 list were Drama projects, with audiences that ranged from 1.3 to 1.6 million viewers. No programs from either Documentary or Children’s & Youth genres made the Top 10 list.
The top performing CMF-funded French-language project, Bye Bye 2017 was watched by over four million viewers, while the top performing series, La Voix, was watched by over two million viewers. In terms of Dramas, the top performing program was Fugueuse with over 1.6 million viewers during its ten episode run.
By way of comparison, the top performing foreign series in a CMF-supported genre was Les Petits Doués (Little Big Shots) with an average of 778,000 viewers.
|Rank||Broadcaster||Program Title||Day||Time||CMF Genre||# Telecasts||Viewers Age 2+ Average Minute Audience (000|
|1||SRC||Bye Bye 2017||Sun||11:00pm - 12:19am||Variety & Performing Arts||1||4,064|
|2||SRC||Infoman||Sun||10:00pm - 11:00pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||2,554|
|3||TVA||La Voix||Sun||7:00pm - 9:15pm||Variety & Performing Arts||13||2,042|
|4||TVA||La Voix Junior||Sun||7:00pm - 9:06pm||Variety & Performing Arts||9||1,916|
|5||TVA||La Gala Artis||Sun||8:00pm - 10:38pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,787|
|6||TVA||Fugueuse||Mon||9:00pm - 10:00pm||Drama||10||1,618|
|7||SRC||Unité 9||Tues||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Drama||24||1,611|
|8||SRC||District 31||MTWT||7:00pm - 7:30pm||Drama||120||1,437|
|9||TVA||L'Échappée||Mon||8:00pm - 9:00pm||Drama||24||1,306|
|10||SRC||En direct de l'univers||Sun||7:00pm - 8:30pm||Variety & Performing Arts||1||1,292|