SOS/Save Our Soaps! ABC MESSAGE BOARD is Launched
Fans Want Their Voices Heard as Ratings Continue to Decline
On December 24, 2009, fans who founded the “SOS/Save Our Soaps!” General Hospital campaign launched the “SOS/Save Our Soaps!” ABC message board in response to ABC Daytime’s sudden closure of its own ABC Insider Access board on December 23, 2009. As ratings for all ABC soaps have continued to decline, viewers of all three soap operas, All My Children (AMC), One Life To Live (OLTL), and General Hospital (GH), still desire a forum in which to voice their comments and concerns in the hopes that positive changes will occur.
Recently, ABC soaps have frequently found themselves in last place for total viewers versus the other soaps. This is most disappointing for ABC’s lead soap, GH, which tied As The World Turns (ATWT) and OLTL for the ratings week of December 28, 2009, to January 1, 2010, for last place in HH. For the seasons ending September 2007 and 2008, GH was solidly in the third position; however, for the season which ended September 2009, Days Of Our Lives (DOOL) overtook GH for 3rd place and, since then, GH has fallen even further in the rankings.
When compared to The Young and The Restless (Y&R) and DOOL, the ABC soaps’ performance in the important Women 18-49 demographic has likewise been disappointing. GH, which used to challenge Y&R for first place in the 18-49 demographic and had been easily beating DOOL for second place, has fallen to 3rd place in this most important demographic, while AMC and OLTL, which used to compete with DOOL for fourth place, have fallen even further in the rankings. With the cancellation of Guiding Light and the scheduled cancellation of ATWT, that leaves the three ABC soaps, which used to consistently rank among the top daytime dramas, struggling versus Y&R, DOOL and The Bold & The Beautiful (B&B), with GH now in consistently in third place and OLTL and AMC frequently vying for last place.
These decreases in ratings clearly signify the dissatisfaction the audience feels with ABC’s three daytime dramas. Viewers had hoped that their voices would be heard when ABC Daytime opened the ABC Insider Access board as a way to gain direct viewer feedback on all three soaps. Unfortunately, ratings have continued to drop, making many wonder if anyone was even reading the feedback they were requested to provide prior to the board’s sudden closure. This closure is what led the “SOS/Save Our Soaps!” GH campaign to create the “SOS/Save Our Soaps!” ABC message board. Many of the fans from ABC’s board expressed a desire to have a site to continue to express their comments and concerns regarding the shows.
It is clear that ABC Daytime management, led by President and Creative Consultant Brian Frons, has totally lost touch with the audience or does not care to provide a higher quality product. For the four most recent ratings weeks vs. last year, the number of 18-49 GH viewers has declined 13%, AMC 17% and OLTL over 20%. While ABC soaps are losing viewers, the number of Y&R viewers in the same demographic is up 5%, countering the argument that viewership of soaps is only declining.
The “SOS/Save Our Soaps!” ABC message board invites fans of all three ABC soaps to join and give daily feedback on one or all three of the shows and offers a weekly discussion forum for viewers to share their comments and opinions with one another. Weekly, all feedback collected on the site will be mailed to management at ABC/Disney in the hopes that they will acknowledge the desires of the viewers and make the changes required to bring these three shows, AMC, OLTL, and GH, back to being the top-rated, quality daytime dramas they once were. It is not too late for turnaround to occur; however, if management continues to disregard the audience’s disappointment and desires for change, CBS will not be the only network canceling soap operas.
For further information regarding the “SOS/Save Our Soap!” ABC Campaign, please send inquiries to email@example.com or join the “SOS/Save Our Soaps!” ABC message board at www.saveoursoapsabc.com.