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Nielsen to change livestreaming ratings methodology

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Jul 27, 2023
Data: Amazon/Nielsen; Chart: Axios Visuals

Nielsen will incorporate first-party data in its livestreaming measurement beginning this fall with Amazon being the first to use the new methodology for the second season of "Thursday Night Football."

Why it matters: Amazon is in the second year of an $11 billion deal to carry NFL games and the new methodology figures to give it a significant viewership bump.

The big picture: Amazon and Nielsen were frequently at odds last season over how many people were watching football games.

  • On average, Amazon's own viewership metrics were roughly 10% higher than Nielsen's count, which still used its tried-and-true panel system to give an estimation of how many people were watching.
  • Advertising deals for the games were based on Nielsen's metrics, not Amazon's.

What they're saying: "Nielsen is committed to evolving our methodologies to provide the most accurate measurement of what the audience is watching," the company said in a statement. "We are making modifications for live streaming measurement to more accurately reflect the growing impact of streaming and first party data."

  • "We will continue to leverage newer data sets as they become available in order to drive our measurement capabilities forward, with the ultimate goal of counting and reporting the viewing habits of everyone, everywhere."
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