Miss America Audience Younger, Smaller


The good news for Miss America: This year's pageant was the most-watched program on CMT since last year's pageant.

The bad news: The competition's overall ratings were down compared to last year.

CMT says the pageant, which aired Monday night from Las Vegas, averaged 2.4 million viewers in its live airing at 8 p.m. ET. That's down about 700,000 viewers from the 3.1 million who tuned in last year, the pageant's first on cable. (About 9.8 million people watched Miss America in 2004, its last year on ABC.)

Miss Oklahoma Lauren Nelson won the crown for 2007, becoming the second Sooner State native in a row to take the title.

On the ratings upside, the audience for this year's pageant was significantly younger than it was in 2006, which both CMT and the Miss America Organization say was a goal this time around. The median age of pageant viewers was 43, down from 51 last year, and ratings among those ages 18-24 jumped by more than 200 percent.

CMT is also touting the fact that the pageant and a replay at 10 p.m. ET "reached" 7.2 million viewers -- that figure reflecting the number of people who watched at least a minute of either broadcast. Similarly, 10 broadcasts of the pre-pageant special "Pageant School: Becoming Miss America" on CMT, VH1 and MTV "reached" 16 million viewers, which means that many people lingered at least 60 seconds before changing the channel.

CMT will replay the pageant six more times through Sunday.

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