For the Second Year, Ellen is America’s Favorite TV Personality

New York, N.Y. – January 21, 2014 – She’s going to be the host of the Oscars in early March, she’s returning to the sea as Dory in her own movie in 2015 and, for the second year in a row, Ellen DeGeneres is America’s Favorite TV personality. DeGeneres has been on the top ten favorite TV personality list since her talk show started in 2003, and this is the third time she’s appeared at the top of the list. Remaining at number two this year is NCIS’s head agent, Mark Harmon, and despite a year which saw the host take a summer sabbatical The Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart remains at number three.

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll® of 2,311 U.S. adults surveyed online between December 11 and 17, 2013.

Seventh Heaven

The seven personalities rounding out the top 10 are four more talk show hosts, two sitcom actors and one drama star. America’s favorite physicist The Big Bang Theory‘s Sheldon Cooper – or rather the actor who portrays him, Jim Parsons – moves up one spot to number four this year. And, in his last year (again!) as the host of The Tonight Show, Jay Leno drops one spot, to number five.

Sure to cause some competition in the halls of Comedy Central, Stephen Colbert returns to the top 10 at number six after dropping off last year. Moving up three spots to number seven is the current Blue Bloods star who will always also be Thomas Magnum to millions, Tom Selleck, and retaining her number eight spot is Oprah Winfrey. Rounding out the top 10, in a tie for the ninth position, are two newcomers to the list – Robin Williams, whose Mork and Mindy predates the list but who is currently back on TV with The Crazy Ones, and Steve Harvey, who does double duty on television screens these days as host of his own talk show as well as host of Family Feud.

My Three Sons

With one returning personality and two newcomers on the top 10 list, that means three TV personalities, all of whom are talk show hosts, have dropped out of the top 10. Fox’s Bill O’Reilly, after four years in the top ten (including last year at number six), drops off the top 10, as does Anderson Cooper after his debut in the top 10 last year at number seven. And after 13 years in a row on the top ten list, TV’s longest serving late night host, David Letterman, drops out of the top ten after being number 9 last year.

Numbers

Normally, there are a lot of different chart-toppers for different groups. This year, while there are some differences, it’s largely Ellen’s list and everyone else is lucky to be part of it. While men say Jon Stewart is their favorite, for women it is Ellen DeGeneres. The three youngest generations all say Ellen is their favorite TV personality, while for Matures Mark Harmon is number one.

All four regions of the country say Ellen is their favorite, and she is the favorite for both households with and without children. By education, Ellen is number one for all except for those with a post-graduate degree, who name Stephen Colbert as their number one TV personality.

There are some partisan and political philosophy differences. Mark Harmon’s tough agent appears to resonate with Conservatives and Republicans, as he is the top TV personality among these groups. Ellen, however, is number one for Democrats and Liberals, as well as among Independents and Moderates.

 

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TABLE 1

FAVORITE TV PERSONALITY

Who is your favorite TV personality?

Base: All adults

1993

1994

1995

1996

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

Ellen DeGeneres

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

=10

Mark Harmon

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

Jon Stewart

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

=6

Jim Parsons

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

Jay Leno

*

8

10

=10

8

=6

*

=7

6

9

9

Stephen Colbert

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

Tom Selleck

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

Oprah Winfrey

2

2

3

3

3

1

2

1

3

1

1

Robin Williams

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

Steve Harvey

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

= means there was a tie for that position

 

TABLE 1 (continued)

FAVORITE TV PERSONALITY

Who is your favorite TV personality?

Base: All adults

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

Ellen DeGeneres

7

6

=8

1

3

=4

7

2

1

1

Mark Harmon

*

*

*

*

=9

8

1

1

2

2

Jon Stewart

=2

2

2

5

6

6

=5

3

3

3

Jim Parsons

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

9

5

4

Jay Leno

5

=4

6

3

1

3

*

5

4

5

Stephen Colbert

*

*

*

=6

=9

*

*

10

*

6

Tom Selleck

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

10

7

Oprah Winfrey

1

1

1

2

4

1

=2

7

8

8

Robin Williams

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

=9

Steve Harvey

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

=9

The 2002 survey was conducted in January 2003.

= means there was a tie for that position

 

DROPPED OFF OF LIST IN 2012

Bill O’Reilly (was No. 6), Anderson Cooper (was No. 7) and David Letterman (was No. 9)


TABLE 2

FAVORITE TV PERSONALITY AMONG DIFFERENT GROUPS

AMONG:

2013

Men

Jon Stewart

Women

Ellen DeGeneres

Echo Boomers (18-36)

Ellen DeGeneres

Gen X (37-48)

Ellen DeGeneres

Baby Boomers (49-67)

Ellen DeGeneres

Matures (68+)

Mark Harmon

Republicans

Mark Harmon

Democrats

Ellen DeGeneres

Independents

Ellen DeGeneres

Conservatives

Mark Harmon

Moderates

Ellen DeGeneres

Liberals

Ellen DeGeneres

Household with children

Ellen DeGeneres

Household without children

Ellen DeGeneres

East

Ellen DeGeneres

Midwest

Ellen DeGeneres

South

Ellen DeGeneres

West

Ellen DeGeneres

High School or less

Ellen DeGeneres

Some College

Ellen DeGeneres

College Graduate

Ellen DeGeneres

Post Graduate

Stephen Colbert

 

Methodology

This Harris Poll was conducted online within the United States December 11 and 17, 2013 among 2,311 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online.

All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words margin of error as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.

Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

The results of this Harris Poll may not be used in advertising, marketing or promotion without the prior written permission of Harris Interactive.

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Q835

The Harris Poll® #6, January 21, 2014

By Regina A. Corso, SVP, Harris Poll and Public Relations