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Nielsen's to include mobile in TV ratings

Nielsen's to include mobile in TV ratings
Photo courtesy of SHUTTERSTOCK

It might seem a little bit overdue, but starting soon, Nielsen's TV ratings will include more than just TV screens.

That's right, Nielsen will start measuring what media is being consumed on your TV as well as online, or on your smartphone or tablet.

However, with any new technology comes a new set of problems.

A range of issues, from the lack of commercial rights across digital platforms to the need for the networks and pay-TV distributors to implement Nielsen’s new technology, could mute the early benefits, underscoring just how difficult it has been for the media business to keep up with the rapidly changing ways we consume video today.

 Nielsen will be using the same technology that was beta tested during the Olympics this year in Sochi.

“Our Olympic experience overall, across all platforms — whether mobile or TV or streaming — was all exceptionally positive,” said Linda Yaccarino, NBCUniversal’s president of advertising sales, of the network’s ability to track various forms of viewing. The network said its website and the NBC Sports Live Extra app delivered 24.6 million video views, 160 percent more than during the Vancouver Winter Games four years earlier.

But, Yaccarino added, “The real focus for us is not just about the Olympics … it’s about total audience measurement. And we don’t think we [in the television industry] are there yet. We continue to suffer due to the lags in measurement.”

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