Speaking at the Television Critics Association meeting on Sunday, Sarandos said NBC's efforts to measure original TV shows on Netflix's subscription video-on-demand service "doesn’t reflect any sense of reality of anything that we keep track of."
Earlier in the week at TCA, NBCUniversal President, Research and Media Development Alan Wurtzel revealed in a presentation addressing 18-to-49s viewing of some Netflix original shows -- by way of third-party technology company Symphony -- that traditional TV still dominates overall viewing.
Netflix has a long-standing policy of not releasing any data concerning its viewers or viewing of its shows.
“I don't know why anyone would be spending so much energy and time," Sarandos said. "Given what I believe is really remarkably inaccurate data, I hope no one's paying for it.” He added: “18- to-49-year-old viewing is so insignificant to us that I can't even tell you how many 18-49-year-old members we have. We don't track it.”
Explaining Netflix's current strategy of not revealing data about its viewing, Sarandos said: “I really don't want to get into a position where we are reporting. Because I do think that once we give a number for a show, then every show will be benchmarked off of that show. Even though they were built sometimes for very specific audiences.”
Netflix targets different audiences for shows -- not always looking for the biggest numbers. “We may build a show for 2 million people, and we may build a show for 30 million people.”
Sarandos says Netflix doesn’t want to get into the trap of what linear advertising-supported TV networks need to survive.
“If we turn it into a weekly arms race by doing box scores every live plus three or live plus seven, I think it's going to have the same result that it has on television. Which, I think, has been remarkably negative in terms of the quality of shows.”
Sarandos did offer some guidance. With regard to "Orange is the New Black," he said it has been "our largest show."