When Charlie Gibson took over “World News Tonight,” (as it was still known then) in May 2006, he began to give perennial #1 evening news broadcast “NBC Nightly News” and its newish anchor Brian Williams, who took over “Nightly” in December 2004, a run in the ratings.
By March 2007, Gibson had overtaken Williams. Viewers would see-saw between the broadcasts for the rest of the year with “World News” coming out on top winning the ratings for 2007, the first time that had happened in 12 years.
Back to the beginning. Gibson’s first week anchoring — May 29, 2006, which included Memorial Day — “World News Tonight” averaged 7.17M Total Viewers. “Nightly News with Brian Williams” averaged 8.01M and the “CBS Evening News with Bob Schieffer” averaged 6.78M. Interestingly, this was also the week Katie Couric left the Today show. She would take over the CBS Evening News later that summer.
Last week, the week of August 24, 2009, Gibson’s broadcast averaged 7.08M to NBC’s 7.86M and CBS’ 5.39M.