As the traditional fall TV season begins, it will usher in an interesting meta-spectacle in the way the performance of networks and shows is presented and judged. Especially after NBC’s Rio Olympics results, which showed hefty drops in linear ratings but dramatic surges in digital viewing, networks are likely to point more than ever to delayed-viewing stats. One boost for programmers: Nielsen’s Total Audience Measurement, which seems on track to replace C3 ratings as currency in the 2017 upfront marketplace. With digital numbers augmenting linear, programmers could once again beat their chests about overnights. The right to brag is one thing from the analog days that networks will have trouble leaving in the past.
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