Last night’s episode of Scientology and the Aftermath The Ranches featured two more heartbreaking case studies of Scientology abuse.
But it had no information in it that law enforcement can use to bring criminal charges to David Miscavige or anyone in the Church of Scientology.
It exposed important stories of abuse to a wider TV audience from a kid’s ranch that closed 15 years ago, first reported on the Internet around 10 years ago.
It was also the least-watched episode in both seasons of Leah Remini’s Scientology and the Aftermath, with 1.226 million viewers.
The viewership of the show is now half of what the 1st episode of the 1st season pulled.
26 thoughts on “Scientology and the Aftermath The Ranches Continues Downhill Slide for Viewers”
Alanzo, can you rerun these statistics, removing the premiere, the “specials”, and the reruns? That will give us an accurate view of the actual changes in viewership. I think your mean may shift quite a bit.
When considering how to analyze data points usually discussion happens in advance. The first question is “what are we interested in measuring”? I am assuming you are interested in knowing regular base audience interest in this series, and change over time.
Articulating these questions is important to prevent data from being deliberately “skewed” to fit a predetermined bias. (Busted!).
In looking at this data set, the first point (premiere) is clearly an outlier, and needs to be considered for inclusion since it will skew the data set positively. There are a couple of ways to handle this. One is to argue (in advance) that premieres are likely to not be representative of regular viewership and decide to not include the first episode. Another way (if you want to leave out the premiere) is to also remove the lowest score (the opposite outlier).
Then you have to justify the inclusion of each data point, because there are so few points. I would think that reruns and specials would not be good indicators of base viewership, and remove those. I would suggest using scheduled first runs of episodes to try to control for noise created when episodes are dropped into the schedule. In any event, it is important to consider the data points individually. The reason for this is that there are too few data points, so any one observation will inevitably skew the results, and result in an inaccurate estimation of actual regular viewers.
A number of other considerations, but this gives an idea about how a data set would be handled in reality.
Or you could just throw out a trend line, and move the data points around until you find one you like! Are you studying anthropology again Alanzo?
Very funny Eileen! 🙂
I will bow to one who probably did many more classes in statistics than I ever did.
But one of the things that Hubbard taught me about statistics was that they should always begin as discrete countable products, and all very real. That lesson has served me well in my marketing career.
I really do think this is a good lesson – still – because it’s where you should begin before you do any fancy slicing and dicing of the data, as you suggest. Just stay grounded in real numbers first. Then get fancy later.
So what we are measuring here are the number of real viewers per episode.
And the graph in the post is simply a graph of the real numbers of viewers.
Another basic way to look at the information is to break up the seasons.
Average 1.572 per episode
S2 E4 1.38
s2 E5 1.43
s2 E6 1.23
Average 1.144 per episode
The dive in real viewers from the premier simply says to me that after checking out the show, a quarter of their viewers decided it was not for them. And they have not returned. Not a big deal.
But there is an average of 400,000 fewer people tuning in for each episode of Season 2, than tuned in for Season 1. That could be 30% less ad revenue for A&E between Season 1 and Season 2, and if they have another show they think can make more money in that time slot, A&E probably can’t afford to overlook that opportunity.
But I did look at the viewer numbers for some of A&E’s other shows. And Leah’s show, even though downtrending, is a solid show for them, bringing fairly steady numbers each week on which they have a new episode.
Their other shows vary way more than Leah’s does.
But with the show winning an Emmy in the interim? The numbers should have gone up – not down.
I do also have to say that the content Season 2 is very different from Season 1. It’s as if Leah and Mike radicalized over the interim. They are willing to lie about Scientologists believing pedophilia, Mike is calling Scientologists vermin, etc.
A lot more emotional manipulation is going on in Season 2 than went on in Season 1. A lot more stretches are being made to suggest that the Church, or even Scientology itself, is responsible for the abuses detailed in the show. I think this is very clear.
And I think this is a reason that the show has lost almost a third of their audience in Season 2.
I watched the first season premiere, maybe part of one or two other episodes. Haven’t watched any shows since about the third episode.
“Case Studies” are interesting and can be enlightening, but we can’t generalize from a case study to make a statement about a population of people.
The show implies (or even states?) that these case studies are representative scientologist’s experiences. Maybe that fundamental inaccuracy is what gets under people’s skin?
Other than trying to make something out of nothing why not discuss the abuses these kids endured? The AL of old would thoroughly dissect Hubbard’s words and ‘tech’ to try and help people understand how and why scientologists justify this B.S.
Also if you are going to try and make ratings of Aftermath an issue, at least take the time to do it correctly. Ratings are done a bit different because off dvr’s. Final numbers are calculated days, maybe even up to a week later, because we watch TV differently now.
It isn’t ratings, it’s viewer numbers.
I’d love to do that.
Where do I get that information?
As for why I’m not discussing the abuses these kids, and others, endured, everyone else is doing that. They are all totally emotional and crying and raging and angry. I’ve spent too many years doing that.
There is something that happens to you when you wake up from the Skinner Box of your mouse, keyboard, and screen showing you the same Scientology atrocity stories over and over. You realize that you have been raging and raging over the same things, again and again.
It’s very much like a Truman Show, only for anti-Scientologists this time. You see the people keeping everyone raging. And you see how anti-Scientologists interpret every single thing in Scientology into the worst possible nightmare version of itself to keep each other raging. You begin to see that being an anti-Scientologist is its own hysterical fantasy. And you see that if you don’t appropriately rage in the right anti-Scientology frequency of hysteria – they get rid of you. And they shun you. And they discredit you.
Just like Scientologists, they do not want to wake up from their nightmare fantasy of Scientology and question things, seeing them in new ways. Their thought, behaviorial, and emotional habits are really very important to them. For a lot of antis, these cognitive habit patterns are now a source of pride and a valuable part of their own self-identities – who they tell themselves they are.
Everyone applies critical thinking to Scientology now. Because I can now see how toxic and damaging this anti-Scientology conditioning is to Exes, I am now much more interested in applying critical thinking to anti-Scientology.
Comparing and contrasting the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors of both tribes is fascinating to me. I feel much more positive and productive, and like I’m really learning a lot.
You have a very interesting point of view, I appreciate that.
And welcome to AlanzosBlog!
Bolded! Way to go!
Alanzo is right, he is not trying to look at ratings, or even total viewership. He is looking at “live” views. Perfectly legitimate.
However, not all discrete data points are created the same. Alanzo needs to decide whether a “special” is a data point, whether a rerun is a data point. I would argue that they are not.
The goal is to approximate “truth” rather than argue an ideology. Statistics can certainly be used to lie, but it can also be used to reveal (some of) the truth.
The purpose of the specials are to increase viewership. In fact, the purpose of every new episode is to increase viewership.
I agree that re-runs are certainly not in the same category, and that’s why I haven’t included them.
I was going to add that I recall a college professor saying all statistics can be made to lie but Eileen beat me to it – shucks
Someone on Mike’s blog said something to the effect that “Every episode (the abuse) gets worse and worse.” I think at some point a lot of people saw enough and tune out. When and if a Season 3 occurs, maybe bringing the Jehovah Witnesses and other religions and cults into the mix might stir up interest.
Six more episodes to go – time for more popcorn.
The statistics can be used to lie comment cannot be made too often, glad you added it!
It’s in the interpretation of statistics. People see what they want to be true, more than they see what is true.
If I have said anything that is untrue, or made interpretations of these stats that are not justified by the data, I am hoping that you or others will point this out to me and everyone else.
I might be Sinless, but I am not yet infallible. I’m planning on that happening sometime late next year, probably around September or October.
Until then, I’ll need your eyeballs to point out my mistakes.
screw the stats and viewership by whatever metric in present time.
I didn’t see the 2009 Village Voice Truth Rundown Series until 2012. Same with the 2008 Jason Beghe 2 hour interview by Mark Bunker.
Now that’s a good stat.
edit to add:
I didn’t even know until 2014/15 or so that Heinlein questioned every step of Dianetics before it’s release in 1950. Heinlein questioned Campbell’s involvement and the so called “release” and “clear” via several personal letters, and Campbell finally admitted Hubbard had it wrong. LOL
I’ve only mentioned several times the Heinlein/Campbell letters of 1949/1950.
It’s not that I think Heinlein is some guru, I’ver never read any of his books, but the guy did use some critical thinking & scientific method skills and even called out Campbell and Hubbard for rhetoric to promote their new found discovery of Dianetics, LOL
Since Season 1 of Aftermath won an Emmy it might still be available for viewing somewhere 5 years from now. People could then get restimulated by watching things that happened 20 years ago rather than 15 years ago.
The current push by the CoS seems to be promoting its supposed good works rather than benefits from the subject. In 5 years it might be just a tiny group of fundamentalists. The internet killed Scientology.
I still regard Scientology as a learning experience. It was a pretty good if faulty introduction to philosophy, psychology and occultism.
Exactly. This is true for the majority of Scientologists.
I’d disagree from my viewpoint. I wasn’t interested in philosophy, psychology and occultism when I got involved. I only wanted improvement in abilities to survive better, I only wanted to go “clear”.
I know Alanzo likes everyone to Stay on Topic, but with all the different “camps” in Scientology I think this parable by Kahlil Gibran applies.
*Knowledge and Half-Knowledge*
Four frogs sat upon a log that lay floating on the edge of a river. Suddenly the log was caught by the current and swept slowly down the stream. The frogs were delighted and absorbed, for never before had they sailed.
At length the first frog spoke, and said, “This is indeed a most marvelous log. It moves as if alive. No such log was ever known before.”
Then the second frog spoke, and said, “Nay, my friend, the log is like other logs, and does not move. It is the river, that is walking to the sea, and carries us and the log with it.”
And the third frog spoke, and said, “It is neither the log nor the river that moves. The moving is in our thinking. For without thought nothing moves.”
And the three frogs began to wrangle about what was really moving. The quarrel grew hotter and louder, but they could not agree.
Then they turned to the fourth frog, who up to this time had been listening attentively but holding his peace, and they asked his opinion.
And the fourth frog said, “Each of you is right, and none of you is wrong. The moving is in the log and the water and our thinking also.”
And the three frogs became very angry, for none of them was willing to admit that his was not the whole truth, and that the other two were not totally wrong.
Then the strange thing happened. The three frogs got together and pushed the fourth frog off the log into the river.
* * *
LOL! That’s a great one!
reminds me of Hubbard’s Black Panther Mechanism – attack, flee, avoid, neglect or succumb.
There is a sixth, make friends with the black panther
There’s more than that!
7. Get on him and ride him like a pony
8. Feed him pancakes with High Fructose Corn syrup
9. Blare the LRH PDC tapes at him until he dies of boredom
10. Sing song & dance showtunes at him in a loud Ethel Merman voice
out here in the wine fields of calif the fires have been devastating. Although in a small town not to far, the air quality has been so bad that I thought we got to leave. For a week now every morning real smoke filled skies and homes, smelling smoke and breathing such every morning, every day. Finally today, the winds blew out the smoke for the most part, what a relief, I feel for elders and peeps with breathing problems.
The amount of help received is unbelievable, from everywhere, even Canada and Australia has sent firefighters to help, there are over 9000 firefighters from nearby towns and states and countries regardless of political or religious affiliation. It tears me up.
Reminds me of the Starman movie in which he states “You are your very best when things are the worst”
I see no yellow shirts here, LOL
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