When it comes to television, social media and Twitter , in particular, has exploded as an audience opinion tracker, with heavily televised events like the Olympics  and the 2012 presidential debates kicking up a storm of 140-character-long messages during the events. Before the Age of Twitter, when American families gathered around the television after dinner, ratings company Nielsen  would track some of their viewing habits with in-home Nielsen boxes.
Back to now: Twitter and Nielsen are teaming up to gauge viewers' opinions through a new program called Nielsen Twitter TV Ratings . "...Twitter data [is] a necessity in producing standardized metrics representing online and mobile conversations about television," Nielsen's people wrote in their announcement . The Twitter data will add to the other metrics Nielsen has in place to gauge audience viewing habits.
Would your tweeting habits change if you knew the people making your favorite TV shows were watching and reading?
[Image: Flickr user .reid ]