BBC key player in Irish market

The Irish Times (subs needed) quotes the Nielsen 2004 television viewing figures for the Irish Republic showing that BBC is a key player in the Irish market although RTE programmes still occupy the top ten places.

Eight out of the top ten were Irish made programmes, the exceptions being Eastenders and the Eurovision Song Contest.

Top was You’re a Star with 772,000 followed by the Late Late Show on 763,000 and Killnaskully on 753,000.

The only programmes from RTE2 in the top ten were the All Ireland Hurling and Football finals while TV3’s highest entry, Coronation Street, came in just outside.

TV3 has a market share of 13.5% while the combined BBC1, BBC2 and Channel 4 was 14.6%

Another interesting statistic: BBC1 has double the market share of the Irish language station TG4.

However, as the BBC collects no advertising revenue in the Irish Republic, the indigenous stations can ignore its presence completely.

The article also points out that, unless the Irish government introduces a digital policy, the days of getting BBC in Ireland may be numbered for many as the anologue signal will be switched off in 2012 while HTV goes digital in 2008.

  • Keith M

    Those who slagged my interest in all things Eurovision, should take note of what’s popular in this country. Two of the top three most watched programmes last year were Eurovision related.

  • smcgiff

    I love the BBC, as an organisation (in it’s many guises) and as a TV station

    ‘Two of the top three most watched programmes last year were Eurovision related.’

    A sad indictment of our country.

    You’re A Star – The best argument against democracy I’ve ever witnessed. The only consolation is when that embarrassment competes in the semi-finals it wont be watched by as many as the final (which it wont qualify for).

  • GavBelfast

    Why the mention of HTV, surely only the people on or close to the east coast from Drogheda to Wexford can receive it.

    Why is UTV not mentioned? Are they not fond of telling us that they are the third most watched channel in the South?

  • Henry94

    I have decided to extend my witholding of the TV Licence fee for another year in protest against the witholding of funding to Sinn Fein elected representatives.

  • GavBelfast

    I would be tempted to follow-suit, not so much in solidarity with Henry94 but on the basis that if he doesn’t pay, why should I.

    But then I would bet the amount of the licence that I would be the one who would be prosecuted.

  • D’Oracle

    Half the Republics population is on or near the East Coast so terrestrial spillover signal from Wales is no problem

  • GavBelfast

    Fair eough, D’Oracle, I didn’t think it was quite as easily received (unless you had a decent outdoor aerial), but the point I was making was that HTV Wales (or ITV1 Wales as it is now) does not target viewers in the Republic, whereas UTV (or Ulster Television before it realised where its bread was buttered!) does and makes no bones about it. I was just surprised it seems to have been left-out of this equation.