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'60 Minutes' interview with Buffalo Diocese whistleblower is a big local ratings draw

It is time for another edition of What Western New York is Watching:

Sunday’s “60 Minutes” interview with whistleblower Siobhan O’Connor led the news magazine to a big rating on WIVB-TV (Channel 4), the local CBS affiliate.

The program dealing with the sexual abuse allegations involving priests in the Buffalo Diocese averaged a 14.6 live rating and assuredly will get more delayed viewing.

However, the first 30 minutes when O’Connor, Deacon Paul Snyder III and the Rev. Robert Zilliox were interviewed about the way Bishop Malone handled the allegations, averaged a 17.3 rating. The program hit a high of 18.0 from 7:15 p.m. through 7:30 p.m.

“60 Minutes” typically gets ratings on Channel 4 in the 8-12 range, depending on the subject matter and the start time. The start time can change depending on the end of CBS’ coverage of NFL games on doubleheader weekends.

The more emotional 11 p.m. Sunday interview that WKBW-TV (Channel 7) reporter Charlie Specht did with O’Connor – his source on previous blockbuster reports on the sexual abuse allegations – didn’t attract a big rating. The newscast had a 3.2 rating. Channel 4’s newscast at that hour, which included clips from “60 Minutes,” had a 7.5 rating. WGRZ-TV (Channel 2) was carrying a football game at that hour.

Bishop Malone: Former secretary's criticisms 'embarrassingly contradictory'

The  6 p.m. newscast on Channel 4 last Thursday that included the interview that anchor Don Postles had with Bishop Malone three nights before the “60 Minutes” report had an 8.6 rating. Channel 2 won the time period with a 9.8 rating and Channel 7 had a 4.4.

Sports Report: The Buffalo Sabres’ 2-1 overtime loss to the Calgary Flames Tuesday night had an 8.2 rating on MSG, which is strong for this time of the year and indicative of increased fan interest as the team has gotten off to a decent start.

The University at Buffalo football team’s 51-42 win over Miami of Ohio carried by ESPN2 had a 6.3 rating. That’s a very strong rating, especially considering the first half competed with the Sabres game.

The five-game World Series in which Boston beat the Los Angeles Dodgers, 4 games to 1, averaged a 7.3 rating for the five games on Fox affiliate WUTV. A year ago, Houston’s World Series victory over the Dodgers in six games had a 7.4 rating.

The top-rated Series game this year was the final one at a 9.5, which was carried opposite New Orleans' win over Minnesota on NBC’s "Sunday Night Football." The football game had a 10.7 rating on WGRZ-TV (Channel 2).

A year ago, the top-rated Series game was the decisive game 6 with an 8.8 rating.

Of course, the most dramatic game in this World Series was the Dodgers win in 18 innings over more than seven hours Friday night and Saturday morning. It averaged a 6.6 rating on WUTV and still hit a 4.6 rating from 2:45 a.m. to 3:15 a.m. However, meters only measure TV sets being on and not how many people are asleep watching.

Game four had a 6.7 rating on Saturday, with viewership hurt by the competition with the Sabres’ 5-4 overtime loss to Columbus that broke the team’s three-game winning streak. The Sabres game had a 7.7 rating, which was another very strong rating.

Of course, the big TV event this week was the Buffalo Bills’ 25-6 loss to the New England Patriots on "Monday Night Football." It had a 41.7 rating and dominated prime-time ratings that night. The highest rated prime-time entertainment program Monday was CBS’ “Bull,” which had a 5.1 rating on Channel 4. NBC’s “The Voice” had a 4.3 rating, which is extremely low for that popular reality program.


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