the ratings game

TV Execs (And No One Else) Rejoice As Nielsen Adds Metrics for Smartphone and Tablet Viewing

They're also going to measure your #tweets.
Miss you. (Photo: ABC)

Miss you. (Photo: ABC)

Nielsen, the leader in collecting television ratings data, is going to start measuring peoples’ viewing on smartphones and tablets. The Wall Street Journal scoops that the company is finally adapting to the times by rolling out the ratings metric long desired by media companies, who rely on the service to measure ad rates

The announcement is slated for next week, but Nielsen won’t implement the new system until next fall. The Journal called the moved “significant” because media companies have long been annoyed that they’re not getting a precise measurement of who is watching what.

It’s meant to streamline the scattered system of measurements currently in place, with no one company providing viewership data across all devices. That can hurt ad revenue, since buyers can’t plan how much money they are going to spend without a solid number.

if you’re not sick of discussing “How Twitter Is Changing TV Viewing Habits,” then you’re going to love Nielsen’s other new product. The company will roll out a Twitter-based ratings service that tracks how many tweets a television show earns. The company says that for every one tweet, around 50 people see it.

Young people’s shift toward mobile viewing is one of the main reasons Nielsen is unwrapping this new service. “The reason we’re investing heavily and moving quickly to measure this is that it is set to grow at a fast pace over the next couple of years,” said Steve Hasker, president of Global Product Leadership for Nielsen.

But what about Google Glass?

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