By Eunice Lee
“Who will be the next American Idol?” There is no way to tell without staying in tune with one of America’s top television shows. Although American Idol debuted it’s eleventh season just last week, its viewership significantly continues to drop every year since 2008.
Viewership peaked during Season 5 with 30.3 million viewers, but audience levels have declined annually since Season 6, with Season 9 at its lowest average audience since Season 2. American Idol also fell 27 percent in ratings from 44 percent in the last two years.
With other CBS television shows, like The Big Bang Theory, taking similar time slots play a role in viewer ratings. Compared to last season, Idol’s viewer rating decreased from 7.8 to 5.7. According to Bill Carter, a writer for the New York Times, he stated, “That is a worse percentage falloff than the show experienced on Wednesday night, and it may be a signal that viewers will not latch on to the series this year as they have in the past.”
Another particular cause of why Idol has experienced this significant decrease in viewership is due to competition from similar talent shows: The Voice, X-Factor, and Dancing with the Stars. In the last season, the Winter Olympics and Dancing with the Stars exceeded Idol’s viewership.
It’s almost a given that people like to experience the “new”. Not many pop culture fans stick to only one show. There is no doubt that the fire for this show is slowly dying out. “Its power is clearly diminished”, stated Carter. On a lighter note, American Idol is still considered to be a top television show in all of broadcast television networks. Despite the diminished ratings, it’s still quite impressive how a show so old continues to receive the ratings they get.