‘Big Bang Theory‘ is always one of the highest rated comedies on television as millions of people tune in to watch each week. With that in mind, ad spots during the show cost a premium compared to say, a declining show in a sub-optimal time slot.
So it should come as no surprise that CBS would want to maximize the number of ads they are able to stuff into a show’s time slot with ratings that continually brings in 15-20 million weekly viewers.
But something almost completely absurd happened during last night’s first episode of 2016, as the airtime of the actual episode barely reached 18 minutes of actual content. The average HOUR of broadcast television normally has upwards of 14 and a half minutes of commercials, so it seems completely excessive that one 30 minute slot of television would have almost 12 minutes of advertisements.
When we polled readers earlier in the year as to whether or not they’d rather pay more for Netflix or have Netflix introduce advertisements in order to bring in more content, overwhelmingly, 79% of you said you’d much prefer to pay more.
It’s no wonder, when networks start behaving in such a way that they feel 12 minutes of a 30 minute slot is fair game for commercials, that more and more people are looking for ways to go ad-free through streaming services. Hulu recently introduced its ad-free option for $4 a month, Netflix has promised to always remain ad-free, with CEO Reed Hastings squashing all rumors of potential introduction of ads, and sentiment in general towards the overwhelming presence of commercials has only continued to sour.
To be frank, this most recent push of slimming down a show’s airtime in order to maximize revenue doesn’t seem like a trend that’s going away anytime soon. As network profits continue to decline, it makes sense they will look for ways to solve the problem with hot-fixes like this recent display, instead of perhaps looking for ways that actually appease the larger consumer base.