Problem is Temis
I agree that though I believe the Nielsons aren't really much of a yardstick for the modern viewers, I still don't know how anyone can possibly do better. It would definately take a total re-vamping of the entire system.
It's like if say Family A watched channel 1 at 8 on a Friday, Family B watched channel 2 at same time, and Family C watched channel 3, yet all three families taped the same show that was showing the same time on channel 4. The channel 4 show would be physically watched by three times as many people, but wouldn't even show up on the Nielsons.
But I'm sure the money-making machine weighs up the revenue from downloads, selling to other networks, and DVD sales against lost advertising revenue. These secret calculations are the ones that decide if a show lives or dies. Could also explain why some shows that deserve to die can hang on for season after season, while others are cut horribly short. Hey, I may not have liked Jericho
but that was simply cos it didn't quite catch me, but I can certainly see it had potential.
Thing is on Neilsons alone if that was the true yardstick, basically all we'd have would be reality TV, soaps, cop shows and game shows, with very little if any genre shows in sight.