Traditionally, May is a critical time of year for the television industry, with networks touting their latest and greatest to advertisers in numerous Upfront events. Of course this year, none of that happened given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The sheltering in place at once meant a surge in streaming and new viewing patterns on TV. But it wasn’t all reruns and stale TV — ESPN’s beloved miniseries The Last Dance wrapped up and select sporting events returned to TV screens. Then, in late May and early June, as protests broke out nationwide after the death of George Floyd, viewers turned to news networks to stay up to date.
Using second-by-second, anonymous household viewing data, this report from Inscape and VIZIO Ads gives viewership insights around all of the above, plus a look at how the launch of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon created a very unusual ripple in the normally steady flow of attention to TVs across an entire 24-hour cycle.