Q+A struggles in new timeslot

It appears not all Q+A viewers are fans of the new Thursday timeslot, or at least were not aware it had moved.

Last night the show only managed 290,000 viewers in its 8:30 timeslot.

That’s despite Back Roads at 511,000 viewers as a lead-in.

The idea of the new earlier slot is to engage more viewers, not less. In November the show drew up to 488,000 an hour later….

Elsewhere Big Bash League drew up to 490,000 viewers, ahead of Getaway on 334,000 and Ambulance Australia repeats on 331,000.

There was also a very big gap in breakfast:

Sunrise: 292,000
News Breakfast: 214,000
Today: 187,000

Seven network won the night with 31.7% then Nine 21.9%, ABC 17.7%, 10 17.6% and SBS 11.1%.

OzTAM Overnights: Thursday 4 February 2021


  1. I think a big part of it is habit as pointed out by others. It takes time to change habits, especially if they’re very ingrained. If Q&A keeps making headlines, then people might be motivated to follow it.

    I think the other issue is the lead in. Monday is a very strong news night and doesn’t Four Corners and Media Watch seem more related (and possibly more watched?) than Back Roads?

    And I don’t know if it’s just me, but like I just have more mental bandwidth on Monday than Thursday, where I’ve had a long week and I’m getting ready for the weekend.

  2. Don’t all shows rate lower on Thursdays than Mondays because less people watch TV on Thursdays because they are more likely to be out of the house then.

  3. Thursday might well have been the best night for Q&A years ago, but like Sunday Night at the Movies viewing habits have shifted. ABC should have researched it better.

  4. Great figures for repeats of Ambulance Australia. I’ve given up on this show because of the number of times I have tuned in only to find its another repeat. Perhaps its attracting first time watchers on an otherwise boring night???

    I’ll probably just wait for all the new episodes to get uploaded to 10Play and stream the episodes there sometime in the future. Its actually another quality show on 10 deserving of more viewers.

  5. barrington bumbaclaart

    Thursday night has always drawn smaller audiences across the board. The decision to move Q&A to a night that typically delivers a lower numbers was only ever going to end with one outcome….a smaller audience. Doesn’t take a genius to work that out.

  6. Thursday is definitely the wrong day. I usually would watch after Media Watch but now no chance am I watching on a Thursday no matter the time. They still have nothing to put in its old slot so just move it back.

  7. I know Q+A struggles with it not being live to WA but its ABC2 play out last night would have been very delayed (by the whole hour? I was on 24 and 90) by the Perth lockdown press conference which might still be coded as Muriels Wedding, etc. If that matters.

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