The 2020 American Music Awards (AMAs), hosted by Taraji P. Henson, were the latest victims of the coronavirus pandemic — and of TV ratings trends in general. Sunday’s AMAs on ABC sunk to record-low ratings and nearly halved last year’s overall television audience. The annual awards show’s previous low in the key demo came last year. In terms of total viewers, the prior AMAs low was 2018. NBC topped Sunday primetime with an excellent “Sunday Night Football” game, Fox finished in second place thanks to its-late-afternoon overtime NFL game.
Though the American Music Awards might have looked a little different this year with less performers and only a sprinkling of fans making up the audience, but that didn’t stop the stars who were in attendance from heating up the red carpet at the Los Angeles ceremony.
The AMAs was created in 1973 to compete with the Grammy Awards. Until the 2005 edition, both the winners and the nominations were selected by members of the music industry, based on commercial performance, such as sales and airplay.
Since the 2006 edition, winners have been determined by a poll of the public and fans, who can vote through the AMAs website, while nominations have remained based on sales, airplay, now including activity on social networks, and video viewing.
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