Sochi Closing Ceremony's Ratings Lag Behind Opening Event

Associated Press

38.9 million Russians viewed the event — down from the 43 million who tuned in to the start of the Olympic Games.

MOSCOW – Ratings for the Sochi Olympics' closing ceremony in Russia lagged behind those of the opening event two weeks earlier.

According to preliminary data from the local audience counter TNS Russia, 38.9 million Russians viewed the closing ceremony on Feb. 23, which was broadcast by the state-run stations Channel One and Rossiya 1. For the opening ceremony, the figure was 43 million people, making it the most popular live sports broadcast in Russia ever.

The 41.2 million figure corresponds to an audience share of 60.5 percent and a rating of 27.2 percent.

In Moscow, 4.7 million people watched the event, which brought it an audience share of 60.9 percent and a rating of 31.9 percent.

Meanwhile, the Sochi closing ceremony's Russian ratings were much higher than those for closing ceremonies of several previous Summer and Winter Olympics. For instance, for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, the audience share was 28.9 percent and the rating only 1 percent, which was explained by a substantial time difference between Russia and Canada.

However, the closing ceremonies of several other recent Olympics didn't do substantially better in Russia. The 2012 London Summer Olympics' closing ceremony generated a 27.6 percent audience share and a 3 percent rating, and that of the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics, respectively, 33.9 percent and 8 percent.

In the United States, 15.1 million people watched the Sochi closing ceremony, the Russian news agency ITAR-TASS reported.