January 21, 2013 (Chicago, Ilinois) – The Oprah Winfrey interview with Lance Armstrong on January 18 and 19 greatly boosted ratings for the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) reports Corus Entertainment citing BBM Canada TV Meter. Canadian data shows that the first segment of the “no holds barred” interview on Thursday, January 17 led the Canadian English Specialty Networks drawing an average minute audience of 715,000 (2+) for part one of the special episode of Oprah’s Next Chapter at 9 p.m.
This was the highest-rated show for the day across all Canadian English Specialty Networks for adults aged 25-54. The special Oprah’s Next Chapter premiere episode marked the highest rated telecast in OWN (Canada)’s history for all key demos.
In the U.S.A., some 4.3 million viewers were watching 3.18 million TVs on Thursday – as Armstrong finally admitted to doping with performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) after years of denials – reports TV by the numbers citing Nielsen ratings. Data does not seem to be available yet for Friday’s second segment of the same interview.
As previously reported, OWN decided to air the first segment of the interview in the same time slot as the season’s return of “American Idol,” the most popular TV show in the U.S.A. But many viewers now have the ability to now record one show while watching another, perhaps diminishing the significance of going head-to-head with a popular show.
Ironically enough, OWN is a subsidiary of The Discovery Channel according to Wikipedia. Discovery Channel was also one of Armstrong’s former team title sponsors.