Tuning In to TV: Another day of record Olympics ratings for NBC

Another day, some more record Olympic ratings for NBC.

The Nielsen company said that NBC’s prime-time coverage of the Olympics on Sunday was seen by 36 million people. That’s the largest audience ever for the second night of competition for an Olympics taking place outside the United States. Three nights in a row, including Friday’s opening ceremony, NBC set viewership records.

NBC is averaging 35.8 million viewers in prime time over the three nights, up from the 30.6 million for the same period in Beijing.

Many online complaints about NBC’s tape-delay strategy have flooded social media - but many of these complainers seem to be watching.

Twitter suspends reporter’s account

Twitter has suspended the account of a Los Angeles-based reporter for a British newspaper who included the email address of the NBC Olympics president and asked his followers to write him to complain about the network’s coverage.

Guy Adams, a correspondent for the Independent, was upset with the network’s decision to broadcast the opening ceremony on tape delay when he sent his critical tweet Friday afternoon.

“The man responsible for NBC pretending the Olympics haven’t started yet is Gary Zenkel. Tell him what u think!” it read, before going on to provide his corporate email listing.

Mr. Adams checked his Twitter account Sunday and received a message it was suspended. He then received an email Monday that attributed the move to his tweet that included Mr. Zenkel’s email.

“We filed a complaint with Twitter because a user tweeted the personal information of one of our executives,” NBC Sports said in a statement Monday. “According to Twitter, this is a violation of their privacy policy. Twitter alone levies discipline.”

Rachael Horwitz, a spokeswoman for the social media site, said the company never comments on individual users for privacy reasons. But she said Twitter considers work emails private unless they’re publicly shared.

NBC has racked up record ratings through the first couple days of the London Games, but also has faced harsh criticism online, largely from American viewers upset with tape-delayed coverage. Angry Olympic fans used the hashtag “nbcfail” and even set up at least one parody account poking fun at the TV wait.

The network is streaming the events online, but that clearly isn’t enough for some viewers who shelled out thousands of dollars for big-screen TVs and want their live coverage.

“If this Gary Zenkel doesn’t want to hear from the many tens of thousands of customers he upset with his network’s coverage, I think he’s in the wrong job,” Mr. Adams said in a telephone interview with the Associated Press.

When Twitter receives a complaint like the one against Mr. Adams, its support team does its own investigation before deciding whether to suspend the account.

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