LONDON -- If there remain United States television viewers who maintain grievances against NBC for choosing to air the Opening Ceremonies on tape delay, the numbers are not in your favor.
The network's taped coverage of Friday night's festivities, which began airing at 7:30 p.m. EST, or 3 1/2 hours after they officially began at Olympic Stadium, earned the highest overnight rating for a non-US Opening Ceremonies ever, summer or winter.
According to information compiled by the Nielsen Company, NBC earned a 23.0 overnight rating and a 40 share.
The 23.0/40 is 7 percent higher than the Opening Ceremonies for the 2008 Beijing Olympics (21.5/37) four years ago. It also tops the winter numbers for the 1994 Lillehammer Games (21.0/34), and came in 15 percent higher than the 2010 Vancouver Games (20.0/33).
The numbers would not have been nearly so high had they aired live in the United States with a 4 p.m. start time.
Boston was tied for 11th place with Indianapolis among metered markets with a 24.8 overnight rating and a 45 share. San Diego was tops overall (27.8/49).