Folks whining about how online viewing should be measured by Nielsen will have to find something else to whine about now that Nielsen is able to measure commercial ratings within 3 days of TV airdate on TV (and DVR) as well as online viewing (C3).

But the networks don’t seem in any hurry to jump on the bandwagon. Only Turner Networks has signed up for the service so far.


Anyone interested in the topic should read the entire article by MediaPost’s David Goetzl, but allow me to summarize some of his points why there have been so few takers so far:

  • Reluctance by the networks to make their content available ubiquitously.
  • A jumble of different authentication methods to verify subscribers for online viewing.
  • Worry that online viewing could cost networks rights fees from cable and satco providers.
  • While PC viewing is captured, viewing on devices like iPads and other mobile devices is not.
  • There are logistical hurdles for the networks to implement the tracking by Nielsen.
  • For some networks it doesn’t make business sense to sell online and TV ads together, and they  want to sell the online and TV viewing ads separately, and so would like them to continue being measured separately.
  • It’s not economically worthwhile for many smaller networks to pay Nielsen for the service.
And to beat that dead horse just one more time. The reason that ratings exist isn’t to measure popularity of TV shows, it’s to allow the pricing and selling of advertising.


Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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