#NielsenFamily?

While looking up other information about television ratings, I stumbled along the fact that Nielsen will now start generating ratings based on Twitter posts:

Twitter is rolling out its “Nielsen TV Twitter Rating” system in the US today. The metric was first announced in 2012, and was developed in partnership with TV ratings-tracker Nielsen. It will show both the number of tweets mentioning specific shows, and the number of accounts those tweets reach.

I have no idea how to feel about this. I mean, on the one hand, real-time ratings are clearly less effective these days, between the various time-shifted viewerships from DVR, DVD, Netflix, Hulu, on-demand, and even network online players. Given that, a better way to measure the overall popularity of a show is certainly important.

Then again, when a comics creator’s joke of awesomeness can suddenly set BeMeanToMenDay trending into some unfortunately contextless and far less fun directions, I’m not sure the viral nature of Twitter’s any better for judging actual viewing trends.

Or I’m just jealous of those Twitter whippersnappers messing up the Internet lawn.

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