Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Old, older, oldest

I realize that the old skew of traditional game shows is a touchy subject for moi. After all, I'm skewing older every day. Last night, for instance, I got a letter from the Social Security Administration. A snail mail letter, in fact, just like in the, ahem, old days. I filled out the form they wanted and actually sent it back by snail mail. How ancient can you (or I) get?

So it's with some trepidation that I address GSN's efforts to take a tiny bit of gray out of their elderly audience. I'm part of that elderly audience myself, and I've got plenty of gray to prove it. But today I saw this entry on Game Show Network News that gave GSN's new reality show Steampunk'd only a 35% chance of renewal, despite its extremely high (by GSN standards) viewer numbers in the exalted 18-49 demo. I couldn't resist dissenting in this comment...

Just to show how old GSN skews, this 2013 story from the New York Times notes that GSN is one of the very few cable networks with a median viewer age over 65. "The only other networks [besides Fox News] to hit 65-plus are the game show network GSN and the rural news network RFD."

So now you know why GSN is trying stuff like Skin Wars and Steampunk'd. The network is desperate to get a little younger. Traditional game shows will always skew old, but even for GSN there's a limit to how ancient an audience they can tolerate. Anyway, if Steampunk'd maintains anything like its debut 18-49 numbers, the odds for renewal are 110%.

Look, I don't watch these reality shows on GSN, because I don't watch reality shows anywhere. And at the risk of sounding like the traditionalists who regularly plaster web sites with howls about GSN's programming, I don't like the network going away from game shows. But I can understand why they're doing it. After a while, you want somebody in the audience who doesn't get lots of snail mail from the Social Security Administration.


  1. Sounds like ageism to me. Of course, if this were a case of Nielsen not wanting to program to a certain race or sexual preference, everyone would throw a shit fit over it. Instead, people outright condone this sort of ageist bigotry, with you being a shining example.

    Seriously, you've made the same post 1,200 times about "GSN skews old", "older is better crowd", etc. ENOUGH of this !!!! Either make a new post or turn this into a Nielsen appreciation blog.

    And NO, I'm not giving you my name, because it's none of your damn business. I don't want my cyber-security being hacked into.

  2. It's Casey's blog, he can post whatever he wants and if we don't like it there are a gazillion other blogs out there. But I do agree with you.

    I think it's a fetish with Casey, I can't find the right word really to describe it so I call it a fetish. It's the same debate with Casey as far as the whole age issue goes. He seems to call anyone who favors classics more as "older is better", well some may like classics more, but it doesn't make them older is better. People can still watch new game shows. I'm 18, I like classic game shows. I also like modern game shows depending on what they are. I'm a trivia/word game guy so I watch shows like 5th Grader, The Chase, Idiotest, Chain Reaction, etc. I don't even watch or record classics much anymore, but thats me and those are my game show watching habits.

    I really don't watch as many game shows as I used to. Classic or modern.

    The point is, some people aren't stuck in some sort of a lala land. I think the term "older is better" or "GSN skews old" are becoming overused terms on the internet with you, Casey. Favorite terms is more like it.

    News networks mostly skew old, especially the conservative Fox News, but that gets millions of viewers, more than CNN and MSNBC combined.

  3. Sorry to break the news to both of you guys, but the old skew for traditional game shows is, without a doubt, the biggest single issue for the entire genre. Trying to ignore it is silly, so I'm not surprised you both want to ignore it.

    Anyway, GSN execs sure aren't ignoring it. They can't afford to live in fantasyland. That's why they're programming these reality shows, to try to get a slightly less geriatric audience.

  4. By the way, hiding behind anonymity is cowardly, no matter how much you try to explain it away. At least Robert Truskey posts under his real name.

  5. I'm not trying to ignore it, I think we all know that game shows skew old. But it's OLD news. I wasn't born yesterday.

    As for the reality shows, GSN tried many reality shows dating back to probably about 2004/2005 and lots of them didn't work. GSN eventually got something that works in Skin Wars and we'll see how the others do in the future. Hey, it's good to know GSN hasn't given up.

    If GSN even cares about the game show genre, themselves though, they'll take what they can get, whether it means sticking with high rated Family Feud or originals like The Chase. Although I'll say Reality competitions are competitive and doesn't hurt GSN's brand much at all.

    Heres some more old news. Younger people don't watch as much TV as older people anymore, especially on Friday and Saturday night.

  6. It's critical news. It explains GSN's recent programming developments. If you don't me pointing out the most important news in the genre, that is too bad. Try reading other sites which live in the fantasy that the U.S. TV audience is begging for more fifty-year game show reruns.

  7. Yet again your facts are wrong. I'm not living in a fantasy nor am I begging, personally. Hey, I'll accept that response. No problem.

  8. Had to delete one post from the anonymous coward for gross profanity. Read legalities and technicalities at the bottom of the blog.

  9. What profanity????? Was it the "s" word???? Gimme a break!!!! Fine, if that word offends you, I apologize, but I'm simply telling you that giving your personal info over the web is dangerous. Someone could get your personal information based on your name and hometown and your safety could be compromised, and that's the truth. I also mentioned that I don't condone ageism or bigotry.

    If anyone's the coward here, it's YOU for deleting a perfectly valid comment.

    Please tell me, in your opinion sir;

    1) Is it okay for people to have their safety compromised on the web by giving their personal info?

    2) Is it okay for Neilsen to be ageists bigots?

    3) Do you personally support ageism and bigotry?

    PLEASE, give me some honest answers; no sarcasm or name calling necessary. And PLEASE leave my comment up this time!

  10. Yes, of course it was the s-word. If you don't like the rules on this blog, feel free to comment on other blogs. The "Legalities and Technicalities" state clearly that profanity and obscenity will be deleted.

    And if you're too cowardly to put your real name on insulting and profane comments, that's your problem, not mine. I put my real name on every comment I make on the Internet, here and elsewhere. I haven't had any of the alleged problems you imagine.

    As for ageism and bigotry, I have no clue what you're talking about and neither do you. Nielsen collects data and provides it to their customers. Just because you don't like the numbers doesn't make Nielsen, me or anybody "ageist" and/or "bigoted."

  11. Okay, you want my name, big shot? Fine. I feel strongly enough about this issue that I'll give it to you:

    Michael (Mike) Robinson

    Happy now? I'm not giving you anything more that.

    And yes, anytime you cater to one group and leave out another, it's bigotry and discrimination (in this particular case, ageism). And you can get off your high horse with this "I don't know what I'm talking about" nonsense. I've already explained it to you more than once, and I'd rather not again.

    I'm not sure if you were/are a Neilsen employee or are just an Autistic game show fan with bad reading comprehension and poor common sense like many others I see on the web (see "The Board Formerly Known As Matt Ottinger's if you want proof of that). Either way, you have some issues with your personality you need to address.

    1. I'm not a Nielsen employee. I'm not autistic. I read pretty well. My common sense is about as good as most people's.

      And you are the one with personality issues. Enough said.

  12. Well Casey is an older person himself if you see his profile pic above. (wink)

    I agree with Casey in the sense that I use my real name and haven't had any problems with it myself. I've always done it. But it is a free country and you don't have to give your name if you don't want to and you certainly shouldn't feel pressured to.

    I can understand why Casey doesn't have "guest posting" and has the comment folks login to post comments. I've even experienced this. A lot of anonymous people can and do post profanity and obscenities. I've had blogs and experienced this, I have also experienced it elsewhere. At least when you login, most people "show themselves" and don't hide under anonymous.

    As I said though it is a free country and if you want to login as anonymous, it's alright with me as long as you're civilized, but I always like to know a persons name myself, but I try not to question it.