At last, a Nielsen survey where NBC ranks first: in product placement. NBC had 21,286 on-camera product plugs in primetime during the 2004-05 season, nearly twice as many as the year before and nearly twice the count of its nearest competitor, CBS (12,294 placements). Fox had 10,422, with more than 3,000 from American Idol alone. Overall, on all six broadcast networks, placements rose 30 percent in one year. No doubt the number will only continue to rise, as networks and advertisers come up with new ways to promote their brands that you can’t skip over with your TiVo.

Has the plugging gotten out of hand, or is it so pervasive that you don’t even notice it anymore? And are you more or less likely to buy products you see given prominent placement during a program?