Thursday, August 24, 2023

Pocketpiece Updates for 1960-1977

My initial goal for the Pocketpiece scanning project was to focus on the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s as that is where the majority of lost/unknown primetime viewership data lies. I previously had a nearly complete index of primetime viewership data from the 1980s, so I figured that I only needed Pocketpiece scans through the 1980-81 season. 

However, due to some circumstances, it became immensely easier than I thought it would be to acquire the complete collection of Pocketpieces for the 1980s, and I've heard from several people that having the non-prime data for the 1980 would be very helpful. So the current plan has now changed slightly to finishing out posting the 1980s and very early 1990s, up through either the end of the 1990-91 season or through the end of the 1991 calendar year.

This means that unfortunately, the earlier decades have been put on the back burner for now in terms of posting the complete Pocketpiece scans. At the current trajectory, I likely wouldn't have been able to post Pocketpieces for the 1960s or early 1970s until the end of next year at the earliest.

Recently though, a very kind contributor reached out to me with scans for the primetime portions of nearly all of the Pocketpieces from Fall 1960 through 1977. These cover the entire regular broadcast season (September through April). So, I will be posting these in season-long batches over the next couple weeks/month(s) to serve in place of the full Pocketpieces until the time comes that I am able to scan the remaining pages of those 17 years.

These posts will not include any of the summer season (May through August) nor will they include the weeks that the Pocketpiece doesn't cover. Until 1973, there were 4-5 weeks per year that Nielsen did not measure at all ("black weeks") and starting in 1973 they measured these separately in a report called the "Fast Weekly Household Report." I do not possess any of the Fast Weekly Household Reports from 1973 through 1978 though I do have the nearly complete collection from 1979 through 1987 (when the Pocketpieces turned to a weekly format).

Hopefully, these will be helpful in the time between now and when the full Pocketpieces are able to be scanned. As soon as I have posted the full Pocketpieces through 1991, I will start working backwards from 1977.

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