A new proposal for measuring how viewers "respond to" television is coming out of the MIT Media Lab. Marketed through Bluefin Laps, the proposal builds on the notion of mapping the "TV genome" to come up with new metrics focusing on how viewers respond to television programs through comments on social media networks. The system seems to track and count social media comments for programs, and then compares those counts with other programs in the same initial daypart to come up with "Response Level" and "Response Share" metrics similar to traditional ratings and shares measures.
Interesting, but I'm not sure how useful counting comments, rather than eyeballs, will be - the proposed metric still faces the problems of delayed viewing and multiple airings for programs, and while perhaps helpful for programmers, doesn't seem to be of much value to advertisers, who are the ones really driving the measurement of audiences.
Source: "Bluefin Labs rolls out social TV ratings system," lostremote.com