from the watching-the-watchers dept.
RobotRunAmok writes "The Nielsen Company has been the principal entity tracking TV shows' popularity, and, by extension, their potential profitability. But as our media consumption practices change, some believe that Nielsen's methods have not kept pace. A new consortium including networks owned by NBC Universal, Time Warner, News Corp, Viacom, CBS, Discovery, and Walt Disney — along with major advertisers — is calling for the creation of a new audience measurement service, and planning to solicit bids from outside firms by the fourth quarter of this year. Nielsen says they're not worried about so many of their customers ganging up on them, having just invested more than a billion dollars in research to stay modern. Except that today Nielsen announced they would pointedly not be adding weights to DVR households, and that adding weights for the presence of a personal computer or Internet access in under-represented households would provide 'no significant change or enhancement' to its national TV ratings sample. The pundits deride Nielsen's 'archaic' methodology and 'disco-era tactics,' but others scoff that such a consortium will only 'put the foxes in charge of the henhouse.' Stay tuned..."
"Bond reflected that good Americans were fine people and that most of them
seemed to come from Texas."
- Ian Fleming, "Casino Royale"