Apples and oranges

Date of publication: June 15, 1992

Abstract:

How Television and Radio audiences are measured varies widely across the world, and specifically in Europe. That differences in techniques matter is demonstrated. Users of research data, whether representing the interests of international brands or of public broadcasters, need figures that can be compared across national boundaries. A European joint industry working party has been working to this end over the past year. It has published a report giving recommendations on good practice in the data collection and reporting procedures for Television peoplemeter systems. There remain (at least) three issues that need to be resolved by a programme of experimental work that would be painless to research budgets if tackled on a joint industry basis: 1. "presence" v "viewing" 2. linkage of audience appreciation 3. the software conventions of what constitutes a "viewer" at a particular moment. A challenge is put to the industry to invest in its own future.

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