Nielsen Sees Gold In TiVo Users

from the gotta-rush-that-out dept

It looks like TiVo is finally catching on. While Nielsen had planned to start including data on people using TiVo-like devices in 2006, they’re now pushing that deadline up a year, as they’ve noticed that the TV-watching public is increasingly signing up for such services (thanks, in part, to various cable and satellite providers offering them with basic service). For the extra paranoid, Nielsen says they won’t track things like whether or not people fast forward through commercials, but only whether or not the show was watched at a different time than it was originally broadcast. Still, it probably won’t be long before they’re tracking commercial skippers as well. So the question is, once the data on commercial skippers becomes public, what will happen? Will broadcasters demand changes in the technology (or the law!), or will they admit that it’s time that they, themselves, changed how they present advertising (or, even, how they fund their operations)?

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Comments on “Nielsen Sees Gold In TiVo Users”

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OldYeller says:

The next Ad Offensive (or should I say, Offensive

I was watching Cold Case Files on CBS last night, and at least 3 times during the show a DishTV text-only ad crawled across the bottom of the screen, pretending to be an alert for subscribers.

This was really annoying since it overlayed the content itself insead of being in a separate crawler-space at the bottom, and obviously hit all of the viewers while pretending to be a targeted message (we use cable). Since we were expecting snow the next morning, it was hard to ignore since it looked like a weather warning.

Then it hit me- this was a crude attempt to Tivo-proof their pitch, since it’s part of the show. I don’t know if this was a local or national ad, but I will vote with my remote and switch off any show that tries this on me again.

Michael Armstrong (user link) says:

Re: The next Ad Offensive (or should I say, Offens

Well, I wouldn’t blame the show, or even the network. I saw the same message on any show I watched the entire weekend. During Cold Case, it was tagged with the local affilliate name. During other shows, it was more generic.
Offhand, I’d guess that my cable system (Comcast) gets its satellite feeds via Dish/Echostar and that the crawler was force-fed by them.

aNonMooseCowherd says:

skipping commercials

Still, it probably won’t be long before they’re tracking commercial skippers as well. So the question is, once the data on commercial skippers becomes public, what will happen?

Isn’t it obvious? People who skip the commercials will be branded “pirates” and will go to jail for “theft of service”.

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