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NEW YORK (AP) — The 16-year ratings dominance of NBC’s “Today” show, one of television’s most epic streaks, has apparently ended.
The Nielsen Co. said Monday that ABC’s “Good Morning America” beat NBC’s morning show last week by a razor-thin margin of 13,000 viewers — and ABC owes Tim Tebow a hearty thank you.
The “Today” show had won 852 consecutive weeks in the ratings, a streak that began in December 1995 when Bryant Gumbel and Katie Couric were the chief anchors.
The streak was a huge point of pride at NBC as the rest of the network declined. Morning shows are also an important revenue source, and a changing of the guard could have significant financial repercussions. The “Today” show earned an estimated $484 million in revenue in 2011, according to Kantar Media, more than “GMA” ($298 million) and CBS’ morning show ($156 million) combined.
NBC this month signed “Today” co-host Matt Lauer to a contract extension that reportedly makes him the highest-paid on-air talent in television news. Lauer, however, was on vacation last week. David Gregory and Carl Quintanilla subbed for him
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