Apparently if people aren’t actually watching TV during prime time, it makes advertising “trickier to measure and pitch to marketers,” resulting in less ad revenue, giving the networks “no choice but to adapt.”
There are about a dozen shows set up to auto-record on my TiVo and of those shows, I might be able to tell you the exact time and date that two of them air (The Office is on at 9:00 on Thursdays and America’s Funniest Home Videos is on at 7:00 on Sundays — or is it 8:00?). I have no idea when new episodes of the rest of my shows air. I don’t know the day or the time.
So the question becomes; does “prime time” even matter. Sure it does. It matters for sports events and it matters for people who don’t have digital video recorders, on-demand, or internet access. Once they die off, though, (old people, not sports) television networks might as well make everything on-demand, with new episodes being made “available” at a certain day and time.