Viewer fatigue has IPL's TV ratings plunging to an all-time low

Big sixes or classy strokes, hotshots of Bollywood or superstars of the ICC World Cup, nothing seems to be helping the plunging television ratings of the fourth version of the Indian Premier League. Where have all the cricket lovers gone? To the stadiums? Nah, the stadiums too are running far below capacity.

Has the IPL bug lost its bite or has an overdose of cricket killed the excitement? Whatever the reasons, you don't see viewers buzzing around the TV anymore. Even if they do watch, as SetMax suggests, the finger on the remote is restless, switching to other channels pretty swiftly.

All that shuffling

This year's IPL saw the re-bidding of players, which resulted in players who were once the poster boys of fans being torn of the walls. The local boys too were shuffled around. With Anil Kumble deciding to quit the game and Rahul Dravid showing off his elegance for a different Royal, many people in the city felt the home team had lost its identity.

Early enthusiast

Sabastian Pushpak, CFO of an IT company, who watched every Royal Challengers Bangalore match during the first three seasons, says, “Before, I could relate to players like Dravid. But now, only Virat Kohli from the previous seasons still plays for the team. There is not one player I can identify with in the team, so I just stopped watching the matches.”

Talen Claude, student, also feels the same. “IPL has become all about the money. After the reshuffling of players and all the hype about it, people have lost interest.”

There are also those who believe that the IPL has just become a secondary choice. Nikhil G.K., student, says: “It has become more of a time-pass. People watch it in between other shows. Too many endorsements during the game have also spoilt the experience. People have taken a break from this IPL hype especially after the long World Cup season.”

Saas and bahus are back

The saas, bahus and betis are once again in the limelight. Many households have reverted to having their dinners with a serving of good old-fashioned melodrama. Jacqueline D' Souza, who sacrificed her daily dose of soaps to watch the previous season of IPL, says,

“I am really confused with the IPL this time. I was excited before as it was a new format and I knew the Bangalore players. This time I don't even know who the players are. We are back to watching serials in our house.”

Surely as things stand IPL needs a strategic timeout.

Keywords: IPL 2011


Couch Potato March 9, 2011