For politicians, an election is a loaded game: there is one winner and the rest are losers. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Unless, of course, it is a hung parliament or assembly.
Not so for those in the business of capturing their victories and defeats.
All three of India’s leading English news channels are claiming that they were the channel of choice on results day, March 6, when the verdict of the elections to the five State assemblies, including Uttar Pradesh, came out.
# Times Now* newspaper advertisement: “Times Now reaffirms its undisputed leadership on election counting day.” Citing TAM ratings, it claims fullday viewership of 39% (versus 23% for CNN-IBN and 22% for NDTV), and primetime (7pm to 11 pm) viewership of 48% (versus 18% for CNN-IBN and 20% for NDTV).
# CNN-IBN newspaper advertisement: “Elections = CNN-IBN & IBN7. India’s best team = India’s best results. CNN-IBN, IBN7 and The Week post-poll conducted by CSDS gets the projections right again.” On air, CNN-IBN says it was the most watched of the channels.
# NDTV 24×7 newspaper advertisment: “Who won the election without any shouting and screaming? NDTV24x7 had more viewers than all other news channels COMBINED.” Using an opinion poll by GfK-Mode in 11 cities (sample size 5,000), NDTV claims it had 51% viewership compared with CNN-IBN’s 19%, Times Now’s 15% and Headlines Today’s 10%.
* Disclosures apply
Also read: Times Now. Times Now. Times Now.