On May 16th, CBS cancelled Jericho, which I really liked, but wasn’t sure was going to make it through the first season.
Beginning almost immediately thereafter, in a tie-in to the season finale, over 20 tons of nuts were shipped to CBS in protest of the cancellation.
On June 6th, CBS announced via their fan forum that due to unexpected fan response they would be ordering an additional seven episodes for next year. They also expressed that to continue production of the series the fans will need to grow the number of viewers for the show.
Additional information was provided in a quote from one of the actors, a Waukesha native:
The biggest problem with our show is that so many people were watching it on the Internet or Tivo (which doesn’t count toward Neilson ratings), so I think the fans are now aware to watch it when it’s on.
So that’s two different comments indicating that watching via DVR or online doesn’t count toward the ratings of a show. This indicates to me the same problem that has been faced so often in the past… technology advances, but the big companies don’t know how to deal with it.
While I agree that CBS needs to see an increase in the number of viewers to continue the show, I sincerely hope that they’re going to take additional steps to determine how to track the “profitability” of a network show, especially one that was geared so heavily towards the Internet as Jericho was up to this point.
Hey ACNielsen… it’s high time to figure out how to provide more comprehensive tracking data… those Nielsen Ratings need to be expanded to capture more information or else you’re just misleading everybody in the long run. I don’t envy the task, but as we move more towards Internet-centric broadcasting it will become more and more vital.