TechSpot means tech analysis and advice you can trust. Read our ethics statement.
Twitter's Nielsen TV Twitter Rating system is going live in the US today. The partnership was first announced in late 2012 and will see the ratings company create a metric that will measure a television program's reach within Twitter.
Specifically, the service will measure the number of tweets that mention a specific show but even more important, how many other accounts those tweets reach. For example, the series finale of Breaking Bad garnered 1.2 million tweets but those tweets ultimately reached 9.3 million Twitter accounts. It's numbers like those that advertisers will be paying especially close attention to moving forward.
SocialGuide vice president Andrew Somosi, whose company was picked up by Nielsen late last year, said they have a variety of techniques to record tweets about specific shows and can apply useful filters. For example, the company can track tweets of NBC's show Community while filtering out the general term "community" when used as a societal construct.
Looking forward, Casey sees a future where they will be able to dissect data even further. One example includes determining if a celebrity is tweeting about their own show versus tweets coming in from the viewing public. Such a distinction could have a huge impact on the metrics when you consider that many celebrities have millions of Twitter followers.
It's unclear at this hour how many networks and advertisers are signed up for the ratings system.