ABC drama appears to lead the TV-on-Internet herd by a wide margin, drawing 2.5 million unique viewers in the month of February, according to the latest numbers from Nielsen Online. Those 2.5 million viewers initiated some 48 million streams of “Lost” episodes, clips and made-for-Web content a la the ultra-fun audio and video podcasts that showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse grace us with once a week (or thereabouts).
As much as I love writing “‘Lost’ is No. 1′,” there’s an important caveat to these numbers. Nielsen Online’s monthly survey does not include numbers from Hulu, the NBC Universal-News Corp. joint venture. Hulu is on a tear these days, as readers of today’s Daily Variety know from this page 1 story on Hulu climbing to No. 2 among online video providers behind only YouTube (which remains the equivalent of Wal-Mart, Microsoft, McDonalds and Toyota combined when it comes to online vid).
ABC.com ranks No. 6 among Internet vid providers for February with 187.1 million streams, up 14.5% from January. Hulu, on the back of its big marketing push, spiked 33% to 309 million streams. The average Hulu viewer spent 176.9 minutes watching its vid, compared to 104.8 minutes for ABC.com
So with that understanding, here’s the rest of the top five online TV shows per Nielsen’s report. They’re mostly ABC shows, but that would likely change if only Hulu would cough up some show-specific numbers. Nielsen’s report does include the individual websites of Hulu partners NBC and Fox, so there is some representation of their shows.
“Grey’s Anatomy” — 18.7 million streams/1.3 million unique viewers
“The Bachelor” — 15.1 million streams/962,000 unique viewers
“The Office” — 15 million streams
“Heroes” — 11.7 million streams