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Head Man at Viacom Takes a Shot at Nielsen

Nov 14, 2014  •  Post A Comment

Television ratings firm Nielsen came under fire from Viacom Chief Executive Philippe Dauman, who said the company has failed to keep up with the TV industry, reports The New York Times.

“We are in a transitional moment with existing measurement services that have not caught up to the marketplace,” Dauman said during a conference call Thursday. “They are trying to catch up. I am sure they will eventually catch up. In the meantime, we are not waiting for that.”

Dauman’s comments come after ratings for Viacom’s networks, such as MTV and Comedy Central, slipped 15% during the third quarter. Those ratings problems caused Viacom’s domestic ad sales to decline 5 percent during the period, Viacom reported Thursday.

Dauman added that a significant portion of viewing is done through gaming devices and mobile apps, which Nielsen doesn’t track.

The Times adds that Nielsen “has faced a wave of backlash in recent years, as a series of TV and advertising executives criticized its ability to measure the new ways people watch television. That criticism heightened in recent weeks after the company acknowledged that it had been reporting inaccurate ratings for broadcast networks for seven months.”

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