Nielsen to begin tracking Netflix, Amazon Prime audiences

Clinging to its position as television's dominant audience ratings provider, Nielsen said it will begin offering it customer data on Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) and Amazon Prime (NASDAQ: AMZN) SVOD audience usage sometime in the middle of this year.

"That will be the last significant overall television content viewing that we don't already measure," Nielsen CEO Mitch Barns told Bloomberg Tuesday. "We really will have a full set of capabilities in the market to measure what we call the total audience across all screens, devices and platforms."

Neither Netflix nor Amazon--nor Hulu, for that matter--share audience data with their programming partners. This has given the SVOD companies an advantage in program licensing negotiations.

"Collecting ratings on streaming services is an outdated mode of doing business," responded Netflix spokesman Cliff Edwards to the news service.

Nielsen is using a set-top technology that matches audio tracks to recognized programming. It will not work with Netflix original series like Orange Is the New Black or House of Cards.

For more:
- read this Bloomberg story

Related links:
SVOD services like Hulu and Netflix aren't enough to offset video piracy
Netflix's Aussie strategy: Let 'em VPN, at least up until launch
SVOD drives connected device ownership, usage in U.S. homes, Nielsen says

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