But fewer Americans were watching this year
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Medal-winning athletes such as the USA’s Jaelin Kauf celebrated their achievements at the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, China. Kauf (reacting to her score above after competing on Feb. 6) won the silver medal in the freestyle skiing women’s moguls. The network airing the Beijing Olympics, NBCUniversal, probably isn’t celebrating. The first four nights of the games saw viewership reach only about half the levels of the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea across all platforms. (Even with the reduced audiences, the Olympic coverage still produced the most-watched programs on network television on each of the first four nights.) The lower ratings were not a surprise to NBC. In late January the network told ad agencies to expect about half the audience of the 2018 games. NBCUniversal Television chairman Mark Lazarus told Sports Illustrated that the company is “delivering what we promised to the marketing community.” NBCUniversal reportedly paid $7.75 billion for rights to the Olympics through 2032.
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