Grammys Make A Comeback
After ratings for the recording industry's annual Grammy Awards plunged to their third-lowest level in history last year with just 17.18 million viewers tuning in, they zoomed upwards Sunday night, attracting 19.05 million. Critics, as usual, generally dissed the awards telecast, but generally gave host Craig Ferguson high marks. In its report, Reuters commented, "The increased viewer ratings provided some cheer to an industry fighting a losing battle to maintain album sales in an era of legal and illegal digital downloads." Meanwhile, the real star power was demonstrated Monday night when, according to Nielsen overnight ratings, a press conference with President Obama attracted 37.19 million viewers on the four broadcast networks 11.49 million on ABC; 10.03 million on CBS; 9.75 million on NBC; and 5.92 million on Fox. The number of cable viewers was not immediately available. The New York Times noted today (Tuesday) that among those chosen to question the president were 88-year-old Helen Thomas, who now works for Hearst Newspapers, and 26 year old Sam Stein, who works for the online Huffington Post. "It was ... the very fact that he took a question from Mr. Stein that created a buzz and signaled yet another shift in the ever-evolving news media landscape," the Times observed, as it noted that the White House had decided in advance which reporters would be selected and that those working for The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune, Time and Newsweek were not on the list.