Bad Ball

The football season this year is not exactly making for “must see TV”. I’m struggling to put a finger on exactly why this season totally stinks, but there you have it. It’s dull. I HATE the celebrations. They could be a topic unto themselves, but this is definitely one of those cases where the ‘less is more’ rule applies. I know the “No Fun League” brought them back because people thought outlawing the touchdown celebration was draconian but we were better off without them. It’s difficult enough to get through and average play and not have some idiot showboating that he did his job – frequently to the detriment of actually finishing the play.

Along those lines, here’s the next installment of what I wrote about my time as a Neilsen family. It flashes back to other writing I did about television. It’s almost like that part in Deadpool where there’s a fourth wall break inside a fourth wall break (that’s like 16 walls!), but not actually like that at all.

February 7, 2016

So, the ‘big game’ is on and I’m contributing to the ratings (even if I’m only half watching it). While it’s on I’ve been searching an archive for something I wrote in the past and came across something very interesting. Apparently we’d been given the opportunity to fill out a paper survey for Nielsen way back in 2009. Here’s what I wrote about it at the time:

July 6th, 2009
How average are you?
02:23 pm
We are apparently average (or lucky?) enough to join the ratings system. Yup, that’s right – it’s the Nielsen Ratings system for July Sweeps. Yipee(ish).

I’ve discovered a few things in this process.

First, while the folks at Nielsen DO apparently have electronic devices for monitoring this kind of thing – they still use a little paper booklet for millions of families. Yeah, you read it right – little paper books. Here’s there statement:

“Diaries continue to be a valuable instrument in our measurement toolbox, and are used to collect viewing information from sample homes in almost every television market in the United States. Each year we process approximately 2 million paper diaries from households across the country for the months of November, February, May and July — also known as the “sweeps” rating periods. ”

Second – the depths of my laziness know no bounds. I can honestly say that the simple fact that I’d have to write it down has kept me away from channel clicking when I might have otherwise. Totally not working the way it’s supposed to for ratings, but there you have it. I’m addicted to the TV, but having to do even the tiniest bit of work to get there and I’m completely put off. How’s that for lazy?

My last observation is actually about the amount of TV that actually gets watched at our house. Not much is the short answer (and it’s almost all me). Since we started this last Thursday we’ve totalled approximately 3 hours of TV time, most of that taken up by a movie that lists it’s running time at well over 2 hrs. Don’t get me wrong, the kiddo has watched a movie on DVD and we listen to our 24 hour digital music channel via the cable, but we haven’t really watched anything “on tv”. I looked at the listings over the next couple of days, but really haven’t seen anything world shaking. I’ll probably try to catch the premier of Warehouse 13 (despite the fact that it’s on the syphilis channel) but we might not be home until around the time it comes on. We have lives outside the box – so if we get there, we get there, if we don’t, we don’t.

Have you ever been lucky enough to be picked?
How much TV do you watch on average?

Interesting to see what has changed and what hasn’t in those intervening years.

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