The American Music Awards (AMAs) could be taking a break for one year, as the Billboard Music Awards (BBMAs) move to its usual Sunday held for the AMAs on Nov. 19, 2023. The producer of both ceremonies, Dick Clark Productions, which is owned by Penske Media Corp, has neither managed to secure a broadcast partner for AMAs or BBMAs. Therefore, they made the decision to promote their own brand, Billboard. This news has come as chatter amongst music industry professionals is that the AMAs are no longer exciting and new but have become stale.
ABC has collaborated with the American Music Awards for some time, but ABC was unaware of BBMA’s date change until it was announced publicly on March 15. In contrast, NBC has aired BBMA since 2018, but the network decided not to pick it up this year. NBC is instead focusing on expanding its People’s Choice Awards franchise in the fall, including the new People’s Choice Country Awards, which are coming up in September.
Furthermore, ratings for the AMAs have been dropping steadily in recent years, with the lowest number of viewers at 3.53 million total viewers and a 0.6 rating among adults in the key 18-49 demographic in 2022. In the two years prior, the show had garnered a 1.0 rating and four million viewers in 2021 and 2020, respectively.
The AMAs originated in 1973, and by the mid-80s, they became the Grammys’ biggest competitors in attracting more viewers during some years, especially during Michael Jackson’s popularity peak in the early part of that decade. Nonetheless, these days for awards shows, licenses to broadcast or stream on partners play a significant role in determining ratings.
The American Music Awards and the Billboard Music Awards are waiting for network partners or streamers, and we will have to wait to see how this shuffle affects these ceremonies.