Some moments on TV are bigger than others. Whether it be the series finale to an iconic show, a sporting event too monumental to miss, or a president resigning, one moment now stands above them all as the most watched television event ever.
Super Bowl LVII has now become the most-watched U.S. telecast in TV history, following an adjustment from the media company Nielsen.
According to Nielsen Media Research, the game’s original total of 113 million viewers, first reported in February, was not entirely correct, as its new findings now put the total number of viewers at 115.1 million.
According to Fox, the new numbers were the result of “a thorough review by Nielsen that revealed irregularities in the encoding that enables Nielsen’s measurement of TV viewing as well as in the measurement of out-of-home viewing.”
Nielsen Media Research shared a statement with The Athletic on the updated numbers and its efforts to be transparent in its audience measurement.
“The Super Bowl continues to be a unique media event in terms of its size and diversity in how audiences watch the game,” the statement said. “We appreciate the support and collaboration from our partners at FOX and the NFL to correct previously unknown errors to ultimately provide a more accurate measure for this year’s total audience for the game.”
The statement shared that viewers who were supposed to be credited towards Fox were instead given to the NFL Network. The error resulted in 2.1 million viewers fewer being given to Fox’s total.
The initial numbers released shortly after the Feb. 12 game put Super Bowl LVII at the third-most-watched Super Bowl of all time, but now the game has surpassed that of Super Bowl XLIX, which had 114.4 million people watching when Marshawn Lynch should have had the ball in his hands.
Other top events that were not a Super Bowl include the moon landing, which aired on multiple stations, the series finale of "M*A*S*H", and former President Richard Nixon’s resignation.
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