– During the latest Grilling JR, Jim Ross touched on WWE’s reliance on quarter-hour ratings numbers as an indicator of which segments were and weren’t striking a chord. Ross recalled that the internal quarter hour numbers were metrics that creative “lived and died by,” and that they could be both a blessing and a curse. Highlights are below:
On whether they were tracking quarter hour ratings per roster member: “That’s a great question. It should be — maybe they’re doing it now. At that time, I didn’t ever see an official summary of quarter-hour ratings by talent. Now, we certainly had kept track of all the quarter hours. And you knew who was in the match, because it said there. But keeping a running total of how you did overall every week when you’re on TV, I never saw that.”
On the importance of quarter-hour ratings numbers at the time: “But we were certainly aware of the quarter hours. And that can be a blessing or a curse. I got in a lot of situations where my quarter-hour numbers with whomever was carrying me were very, very good. Which was a curse, because you know that if it’s good, they’re gonna do something else. And I got tired of getting my a** [kicked]. I got bloodied and you know, Bischoff broke a cinder block over my head for God’s sake. I always called that the Bill Shaw block of death. Yeah, they kept track of it. And of course, it became a very valuable tool. And maybe too much so at times, because if something didn’t get over, there may have been other reasons that happened. There could have been a news break, it could have been something on television — a competitor, that they switched the channel on. I don’t know. But sometimes it was a little unfair. It wasn’t quite clear. But no official cumulative running total, but certainly the quarter hour, the creative guys lived and died by the creative hour, the creative rating.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Grilling JR with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.