New York -- Basic cable's average total-day household
share rose two points for the October-to-March period, while that of the "Big
Three" broadcast networks fell by 1.6 points, according to a Cabletelevision
Advertising Bureau analysis of Nielsen Media Research data.
Analyzing Nielsen's fourth-quarter-1997 and
first-quarter-1998 statistics, the CAB found that cable's full-day household share
was 33.4, compared with 39.1 for the Big Three broadcast networks.
That cut the cable/broadcast share gap to 5.7 points,
"the smallest level ever," with CAB president and CEO Joseph Ostrow predicting
that cable's share will top the Big 3's "well before the end of the
In primetime alone, basic cable's 27-week Nielsen
share was 30.1, versus the Big 3's 42.3, the CAB said.
CAB researchers added that they want to weight Fox's
numbers appropriately before including them.