Nielsen, Broadcasters At Odds Over Headphone Measurement

In today’s Inside Story—our weekly in-depth feature covering critical issues that impact radio’s success—managing editor Paul Heine taps into something of a rallying cry among broadcasters. The question is, how effectively is Nielsen capturing headphone listening in PPM markets?

Broadcasters continue to doubt that all listening taking place on headphones and earbuds is being detected, in part due to the PPM’s awkward headphone adapter. Nielsen, while defending its numbers, insists the meter is capturing the lion’s share of headphone listening and says the ultimate solution is census-style measurement from its SDK-based digital audio service. What’s at stake? A potential chilling effect that makes some broadcasters reluctant to promote their streams on-air for fear the listening won’t be captured in the ratings.

Inside Radio remains committed to finding and reporting on the issues that are most relevant and important to you. How are we doing? By all means, please let us know. And thanks for reading.


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