Despite Viacom's assertions that streaming video site Netflix is doing nothing to hurt its Nickelodeon cable channel, the firm Bernstein Research says it has "hard data" to show otherwise. There is no argument that streaming media has had an impact on traditional video distribution channels. There have been studies to show significant numbers of people are actually cutting the cord for Hulu and Netflix.
So it would seem only logical that the double-digit ratings drop in Nickelodeon must have something to do with the new competition in the streaming media space. Bernstein's Todd Juenger found that homes with streaming media platforms has statistically significant declines in their viewership of children's TV channels. It isn't just a Nickelodeon problem, but it may be suffering more than the others.
"Turns out, Netflix streamers watch just as much traditional TV as non-streamers. However, there is a significant share shift among streamers. Kids’ networks (not just Nickelodeon) and syndicated shows are getting severely whacked," he said. He looked at a 50/50 split of 19,000 people, half of which streamed video and the other half of which just watched regular broadcast TV. Viacom has repeatedly said that Netflix, and other streaming sites, is not impacting its conventional media channels.