200 000 viewers have abandoned Hungarian public media’s newly-launched all-news channel M1 since it was launched in March, the daily newspaper Népszabadság claims.
According to their report, 332 000 viewers tuned in to the channel’s 19:30pm news programme, which decreased to 116 000 by June. The combined audiences of the five state-operated television channels stood at 16.2 per cent among the adult population in the week before reorganisation; this has fallen to 15.5 per cent.
As a result of the overhaul of public media in March, its flagship channel M1 has become an all-news outlet, with other types of programmes previously aired on it being transferred to Duna TV. Immediately after the reorganisation, 6.2 per cent of adult viewers opted for M1 and 4.3 per cent for Duna TV; this has since turned round, with 7.3 per cent now watching Duna TV and only 2.5 per cent M1.
Public television’s 19:30pm news programme, which used to be among M1’s most popular, has fallen constantly from an average of 332 000 viewers at the time of reorganisation to 187 000 three weeks later, 151 000 by mid-May and 116 000 by early June. An average of 129 000 people watched Duna TV’s evening news programme.
Although news programmes’ audiences regularly decrease in the summer period, figures are comparable to the 600-800 000-strong daily audiences of the commercial broadcasters – RTL Klub and TV2 – similar evening news programmes.