GB News launch gains more viewers than BBC or Sky news channels
The news channel launched at 8pm on Sunday evening.
The launch of GB News was watched by more people than both the BBC News channel and the Sky News channel according to data released on Monday.
The news channel, fronted by Andrew Neil, was launched on Sunday with Neil delivering its mission and values to camera. The channel claims to "lend an ear to some of Britain's marginalised and overlooked voices," and champions its anti-wokeness.
And according to the TV industry magazine Broadcast, it peaked in its opening minutes with an audience of 336,000. Between 8pm and 9pm it averaged a viewership of 262,000, significantly more than the 100,000 who watched BBC News across the hour and the 46,000 who watched Sky News.
Broadcast said 57% of GB News’ opening show’s audience was male, while 52% were aged 65 years or older and 82% were from middle class demographics.
The channel did tweet its own figures, claiming to have attracted a 1.1% audience share between 7pm and 11pm. However it is unlikely that the BBC will be worried by these figures, as they were dwarfed by those of the main channels, with BBC News at Ten attracting a 30.6% audience share.
BARB Data 1900-2300
#1 @GBNews 164.4k 1.1 share
#2 BBC News 133k 0.9 share
#3 Sky News 57k 0.4 share
— GB News (@GBNEWS) June 14, 2021
The launch of GB News was also hampered by technical issues, with poor picture and sound quality being apparent throughout the opening night.
Many also couldn't help but notice how cheap-looking the whole set-up was.
Office insisted I watch a bit of GB news. So I tuned in. How comes the set up is so crap?
It's soo cheap, Sound quality is poor. Text at the bottom of the screen looks like it was done by a 7 year old.
I thought they pumped money into this.@BylineTV looks much better.
— Dawn Butler MP✊🏾💙 (@DawnButlerBrent) June 14, 2021
Woah, #GBNews is budget. Like, really budget. It looks like an amateur student production. What have they pissed all their money on?
— Owen Jones 🌹 (@OwenJones84) June 13, 2021
GB News looks like when an ITV drama has a newsflash and they’re not allowed to make it look too realistic in case it confuses viewers pic.twitter.com/DyzSXUllUX
— Glenn Moore (@TheNewsAtGlenn) June 13, 2021
The channel has championed itself as new voice in the media world, swimming against the tide of so-called cancel culture and apparent wokeness.
In Neil's opening monologue to the channel, he said: "We are proud to be British – the clue is in the name." Although Neil himself lists his main residence as France in documents.
“We are proud to be British” says #GBNews founder Andrew Neil.
Every single one of GB News’ major shareholders is based outside Great Britain
— Sam Bright (@WritesBright) June 13, 2021