The Scripps National Spelling Bee semifinals and finals drew 9.2 million viewers appearing on all six of Scripps’ entertainment networks: Ion, Bounce, Defy TV, Grit, Laff and Ion Mystery.
The total this year, up 22% from 2022, the first time the Bee appeared on Ion after years on ESPN.
The finals on June 1 drew 6.1 million viewers live and on immediate encore telecasts– up 60% and the highest since 2012.
“This year’s fantastic growth further proves the power of over-the-air television, the promise of the Scripps Networks to connect with its diverse audiences and the special place this nearly 100-year-old competition holds in the hearts of Americans,” Scripps CEO Adam Symson said.
Streaming added significantly to the overall audience. Bee programming was watched for nearly 5.6 million hours, up double digits from last year
Dev Shah, a 14-year-old speller from Largo, Florida, won the 2023 Scripps National Spelling Bee in the 15th round of onstage competition.
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Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.