Date: 4th October 2000

No Quick Ratings For Debates

Nielsen said that it will not be able to produce preliminary audience measurements for Tuesday night's presidential debate until about 5:00 p.m. ET. It said that the delay was due to NBC's decision to allow its owned stations and its affiliates to decide whether to carry the debate live or delay it until after the MLB playoff game between the New York Yankees and he Oakland Athletics.

Fox also indicated that some of its stations would be carrying the debate live and others would be delaying it. In an interview with Bloomberg News, Nielsen exec Anne Elliott said, "We are working very closely with our customers at NBC and Fox. ... We have to get listings from them of what affiliates are doing what.

For us to report on this requires a lot of tap dancing on our part."
Paxson Communications said Tuesday that its stations in 13 markets received permission from NBC to carry the playoff game when NBC's own stations in those markets opted to carry the debates instead.

Source: Studio Briefing