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View Full Version : I've always wanted to know.How do they calculate TV ratings?


TERRELL
1-6-04, 07:52 PM
I was watching "Access Hollywood" and they always tally up how many people watched last night shows.exactly how do they do that? I mean,is it a signal they get or something?


This question been on my mind for YEARS and watching Access Hollywood reminded me of how long I wanted an answer to this question.So,I logged on to ask my fellow great fellow forum members...:)

user00265
1-6-04, 07:57 PM
Eh... that's a good question... I'd like to know too!

Mirzabah
1-6-04, 08:00 PM
They have a number of households they use as a representative sample. They install monitoring equipment in those households and extrapolate national figures from the results from the sample population.

Details here (http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/question433.htm).

TERRELL
1-6-04, 08:03 PM
Thanks Mirza,lol,I've just did a quick google search myself and and found this...The internet is great!!!



Televisionary: Your TV isn't a tracking device, Johanna, but the boxes the folks at Nielsen place in sample families' homes certainly are. I've covered this before, but it's been a while, so what the heck? Others are probably wondering about this kind of thing, too. Here are the basics.

Nielsen uses a representative sample of U.S. TV households to determine who's watching what and when for obvious reasons, tracking each of the country's 99 million households with TVs is out of the question. The sample is made up of more than 5,000 houses, containing more than 13,000 viewers, that are randomly picked in order to represent a wide range of demographics and locales. Extrapolating from that, in theory, provides a picture of what the whole country is watching at any given time, within a certain range of error.

Exactly how do they measure? Using a few methods. They know the age, gender, etc. of each family member when they choose which households to work with. Meters are installed on every video device in the home TV sets, cable boxes, VCRs, satellite dishes to record which shows each is tuned to. Also, the company uses "people meters" to keep track of which person in the house is watching, and diaries and other methods are used to gather numbers on a market-by-market basis.

daddio
1-6-04, 08:27 PM
Originally posted by Mirzabah
They have a number of households they use as a representative sample. They install monitoring equipment in those households and extrapolate national figures from the results from the sample population.

I wish they'd ask me to participate, I'd provide them the same accuracy I provide for exit polls every election :D

BerksWebGuy
1-6-04, 08:38 PM
Actually, comcast did call me once. They hook up a box to your cable, and they can pull the times/channels that you watch...that gets sent with who's in your house and how old they are.

Or something like that.

Croc Hunter
1-6-04, 09:13 PM
Heh.. My Gran swore blind they put a camera in the set-top-box so they can see who is watching. lol. Only found this out when I caught my own Mum peering into the LED behind the smoked plastic.

BerksWebGuy
1-6-04, 09:18 PM
I guess I better stop watching the PlayBoy channel then;)

Croc Hunter
1-6-04, 10:33 PM
Eeewwww!!@Berks.. to much information bro. lol.

user00265
1-7-04, 12:05 AM
Originally posted by Mirzabah
They have a number of households they use as a representative sample. They install monitoring equipment in those households and extrapolate national figures from the results from the sample population.

Details here (http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/question433.htm).
Intresting read, very deep and long :p

I'ma watch my mouf from now on... Sorry Mirzabah...

-Samuel

HalfaBee
1-7-04, 06:31 AM
It is probably similar as how they get the Unemployment figures.

A guess plus a random telephone poll of poeple and an adjustment for the time of year and an adjustment for ????

In otherwords it is just a guess and it doesn't mean anything.

If you beleive polls you will just vote/watch someone else.

It is basically just advertizing hype to make big bussiness put more money into sponsership or TV advertizing.