Channel 2 franchisee Keshet and the channel's news operation joined forces and scored a clear election-night victory, in terms of ratings. A combination of news and entertainment proved the perfect recipe to hold viewers' attention even after the stars of the Eretz Nehederet ("Wonderful Country") satire program temporarily left the election-night broadcast at 9:30 P.M.
Channel 2 topped the evening's broadcast ratings, and the most watched segment of the evening was Eretz Nehedet, which went on the air an hour before the 10 P.M. exit polls were released on television. From the moment the exit poll results were broadcast, Channel 2's ratings lead widened. Channel 2 had 28.2 percent of the viewing audience for its exit poll broadcast, while Channel 10 had a 12.3 percent share and Channel 1 had to settle for just 6 percent.
The news-entertainment combination proved itself when Channel 2's viewership rose to two-and-a-half times that of Channel 10, and five times that of Channel 1. The peak audience on any of the three stations during election night went to an Eretz Nehederet segment which was seen by some 977,000 viewers.
Although the election campaign was seen as lackluster, the Channel 2 broadcast was the station's most watched election-night program of the past three election campaigns. Channels 1 and 10, on the other hand, saw a drop in ratings compared to the last election in 2006.
The director general of Channel 2's news operations, Avi Weiss, expressed satisfaction yesterday at the rating figures. "We were pleased to combine a lot of news with satirical sketches," he said. "And we were pleased to see that the public showed their confidence in us."
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