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Google to Compete with Nielsen? 97

An anonymous reader writes "Jason Lee Miller thinks that Nielsen Media Research's ambitious new plan for measuring all types of video audiences could put it into competition with everyone's favorite company: Google. From the article: 'The Mountain View's next potential rival: Nielsen Media Research, the audience measurement company that has held a virtual monopoly in the sector for decades. And it shouldn't be surprising. Google's MO is information collection and research.'"
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Google to Compete with Nielsen?

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  • Sounds more like (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Zeinfeld ( 263942 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @06:28AM (#15557814) Homepage
    Nielsen is attempting to compete with Google.

    I doubt Google is going to be conducting research surveys or distributing their own rating monitoring boxes.

    The part they are going to overlap on is a small part of the publicly visible loss leader.

    • Re:Sounds more like (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I doubt Google is going to be conducting research surveys or distributing their own rating monitoring boxes.

      With video.google.com, the audience comes to them rather than the other way around.
      • Re:Sounds more like (Score:3, Informative)

        by Zeinfeld ( 263942 )
        With video.google.com, the audience comes to them rather than the other way around.

        Nielsen make their money conducting market research surveys.

      • by Elixon ( 832904 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @08:15AM (#15557955) Homepage Journal
        I'm sure that audience is coming to Video.Google.com, but is google coming to the audience?

        This is what google served me instead of the clips in "Music Videos" menu:

        "We're sorry, but the provider of this video has not authorized Google to display this video in your location.
        To see more videos visit our home page."

        Does it matter that I'm from EU?
        • So if the provider of a video doesn't want to show it in the EU, Google should refuse to host it at all?

          It's the same as Apple and DRM; I'm not buying it, but it doesn't offend me that they use it, the RIAA wasn't coming to the table otherwise.
          • What makes me different? Why does this censorship apply to me? I feel offended that Google offers tools for censorship to its users. I guess that Chinese see the same message for many political videos...

            Once they build the censorship software for itself they should not allow customers to use the same *****. Or maybe it is the purpose? Let people use free censoring software and if there are thousands of real Americans using the real censorship then who will dare to blame Google for censoring information?

            Rest
          • So if the provider of a video doesn't want to show it in the EU, Google should refuse to host it at all?

            Absolutely. By giving people the OPTION to censor, you are indirectly endorsing censorship. And eventually the "option" to censor, will turn into a mandatory requirement.

            An example: Region coding on DVDs.

            The spec on DVDs REQUIRES to you fix both your DVD and player to a region, so even if you wanted to distribute a "region-free" DVD you CAN'T, because it won't work in many players. You you MUST fix your c
            • The DVD spec never requires you to purchase a DVD player. It's a choice, one that many many many many people made. *If you want to watch DVD's* you must fix your content to the US or Europe.

              As far as music goes, I have so far chosen not to purchase any drm music. My point was that I don't give a shit what a company sells to other people.
              • The DVD spec never requires you to purchase a DVD player. It's a choice, one that many many many many people made. *If you want to watch DVD's* you must fix your content to the US or Europe.

                And people would buy DVD players with the intention of NOT playing any DVDs?

                But I was mainly referring to content PRODUCERS, and the fact that since you can't distribute the same pressing of a DVD worldwide, this creates major hurdles for small content producers who must do a seperate pressing for each region. You CAN ma
                • Indie movies: Life ain't fair, and it ain't never gonna be, let's not make laws pretending it will. Making "Consumer choices" that are more fairer to everybody is fine, but the only way to make things fair for little producers would be a law giving them equal status at a table that they aren't currently even sitting at.

                  DRM: DRM as law is horrible and bad and evil, DRM as content producer choice is just that, choice. As long as Joe Not That Good Of A Six String is allowed to post unencumbered music to his we
                  • Indie movies: Life ain't fair, and it ain't never gonna be, let's not make laws pretending it will. Making "Consumer choices" that are more fairer to everybody is fine, but the only way to make things fair for little producers would be a law giving them equal status at a table that they aren't currently even sitting at.

                    What you're saying, literally, is: "We shouldn't bother changing the laws to benefit end users and smaller content producers because the current market is soley the result of market forces an
        • I hope that this is just coincidence ;-) - this is what Google serves me today:

          ---
          Response Headers - http://video.google.com/ [google.com]
          Cache-Control: private
          Content-Length: 141
          Date: Mon, 19 Jun 2006 07:36:00 GMT
          Content-Type: text/html
          Server: GFE/1.3

          404 Not Found
          ---

          When I use the American IP then I see normal content of http://video.google.com/ [google.com] content.

          When I use the URL "http://video.google.com/?test" instead of "http://video.google.com/" from my european IP it works OK. Funny.
      • the audience comes to them rather than the other way around
        That is the feeblest attempt at an "In Soviet Russia..." joke I have ever seen.
    • Re:Sounds more like (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 18, 2006 @08:54AM (#15557995)
      I doubt Google is going to be conducting research surveys or distributing their own rating monitoring boxes.

      Actually, they already have: http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/06/10/132922 7 [slashdot.org]

      With a simple application, they can turn your laptop (pre-deployed) into a ratings monitor.
    • by spineboy ( 22918 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @09:44AM (#15558091) Journal
      Is anyone else getting a little freaked out at how much Google is attempting to do on the web? It does stuff well, and a free market indicates that it is doing well, but I worry about a monopoly eventually. Papers and radios have limitations on how much of the audience that their company can reach, so as to prevent a monopolistic control over the information that people receive. The internet should be no different. How to enforce that though? - Make Google break up like Ma Bell did in the 70's? And at what point? Not yet I think, but the time will come soone I think.
      • by rm69990 ( 885744 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @11:27AM (#15558342)
        Google does have a high usage of their search engine, but seriously, name me a single other product Google has that has higher usage than their competitors. Gmail? Nope. GCalendar? Nope. Google Earth/Maps, recent surveys say Mapquest still beats them out. Google News? Yahoo! News and CNN.com still have higher readership.

        Oh, and it's not illegal to have a monopoly, what ever gave you that idea? It IS illegal to use your monopoly to push into new markets while pushing others out, or to use anticompetitive market behaviour. Considering most of Google's products aren't even linked to on their homepage, please explain to me how Google is doing either.

        Hell, Google doesn't even lock their customers in. I use Google Calendar, Gmail and Google News, yet I still use ask.com and search.yahoo.com, direct competitors to Google's cash cow, almost as often as I use Google search itself.
      • Monopolies are okay. Abusing monopoly power is not. If Google starts using vendor lock-in and product tying to force its way into dominating other markets or by charging outrageous prices, then we have a problem.

      • UNLIKE other well known monopolies, the web is waters down the potential dangers. If microsoft squeezes out a competing technology, we as consumers never see it until they release their own broken version. If MS abuses your rights, it's hard to switch your desktop at home and all 300 of your corporate installs and all your partners and the office suites you use and file formats to an alternative. But on the web, things work differently. If Google omits results, I start using Yahoo. If google starts abusing
    • Nielsen is in grave danger of awakening the Giant. Google has all the weapons to put a Nielsen/NetRating killer online. The statistics sample size from its toolbar is far greater than Nielsen's panelists by several orders of magnitude. Tie in some demographic data and it has a product to kill off Netratings and Hitwise. Given the $10000 a year pricetag on hitwise and Netratings, there are many companies out there (including my own [enclick.com] who would love another Google freebie.
  • Good idea! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nurhussein ( 864532 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @06:29AM (#15557818) Homepage
    Perhaps then the demographics will represent the hip, happening and geeky crowd as well as whatever boring old fogies Nielson represents. I hate it when my favourite shows are cancelled because "ratings were down".

    Then again I'm not 'Merican, so I have no idea why good shows get cancelled *cough*Firefly*cough*. I just know that they do, and the dumb ones remain (latest reality show, WHO WANTS TO MARRY A MIDGET MILLIONAIRE APPRENTICE?)
    • Re:Good idea! (Score:5, Informative)

      by bartyboy ( 99076 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @07:30AM (#15557891)
      Sounds to me like you're more upset about the cancelling of Firefly than the Nielson rating system.

      Nielson samples a very wide demographic, not just "boring old fogies". You can read about it here [wikipedia.org]. The wikipedia article also brings up the point that their research system is not perfect, but it's close enough to give advertisers a picture of who's watching what. If it wasn't, Nielson wouldn't be in the TV ratings system for long.
      • Re:Good idea! (Score:2, Insightful)

        Exactly... Nielsen looks at EVERYBODY, because there's a market for everybody's information. Furthermore, it's a joke to think that Google is going to compete with Nielsen as **Google sells advertising**. This is not an unbiased source. The reason that Nielsen even exists is that [insert Ford, Apple, or any other buyer of advertising time here] is not going to take [insert NBC's, Comedy Central's, or any other seller of advertising time here] word for it about how many people are watching their shows. A
        • Re:Good idea! (Score:3, Insightful)

          by kimvette ( 919543 )
          Nielsen does not look at everybody. They only look at people who still have land lines. You can only become a "Nielsen Family" by invitation, and those invitations are via telephone calls. I have only a cellular phone, and when I bother to get 'net access at home, my "land line" will be VOIP through the office. So, I have exactly ZERO chance of ever being invited by Nielsen to participate in the rating system.

          It sucks, too. I'm in the target market for most advertisers (by age, income, and interests) and b
      • Re:Good idea! (Score:5, Informative)

        by drsquare ( 530038 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @08:08AM (#15557944)
        Nielson samples a very wide demographic, not just "boring old fogies".


        It only samples a very small demographic: people who want to be monitored.
        • If you assume that there's no correlation between people who want to be monitored and TV preference, then it's fine.

          I wonder if it could be argued that people who enjoy sci-fi are more likely to object to being monitored? A lot of sci-fi is rather dystopian, portraying the sinister side of that sort of thing...
        • If you don't want to let the networks know your opinion, then you have no right to complain when they won't listen to what you're not saying.
        • my parents are a nielson media house. Now both my brother and I live inside the house, but we both rarely watch tv. While my parents watch most of the tv hours. Nielson has no idea who is actually watching tv, just that someone is. In our house hold it looks like my brother and I watch alot of cooking shows, network tv and soap operas. If our house truly represents a family older people tend to watch more tv, and skew the results towards shows that appeal to their demographic (desperate housewifes, lost, ho
          • Is Nielsen doing it differently now? We had a Nielsen box a few years ago, and it had buttons on it you were supposed to press to indicate which members of the family were watching at any given time. It was fun for the first couple hours, just because of the novelty, but then it got real old real quick. Of course, it was terribly inaccurate. People forget to press their buttons when they start or stop watching. We'd press extra buttons to add fictitious viewers for shows we really liked. Etc.
            • Re:Good idea! (Score:3, Informative)

              by apnielsen ( 981522 )

              Is Nielsen doing it differently now? We had a Nielsen box a few years ago, and it had buttons on it you were supposed to press to indicate which members of the family were watching at any given time.

              No. People meters have had the buttons since 1991 (possibly before that too).

              It was fun for the first couple hours, just because of the novelty, but then it got real old real quick. Of course, it was terribly inaccurate. People forget to press their buttons when they start or stop watching.

              Pressing buttons

              • We'd press extra buttons to add fictitious viewers for shows we really liked. Etc.

                That's possibly why you're no longer a Nielsen home. We do notice these things, believe it or not. ;)

                I suppose it might look wrong if someone overdoes it, like maxing out all the buttons every time your favorite show is on. We didn't go that far just because we thought it might indeed look suspicious. I assumed the reason we're no longer a Nielsen home is that at the beginning, they said they wanted us to do it for a ye

              • They are testing out pagers that you can carry around with you, that will make not of subliminal signals that participating networks insert into their stream. My wife and I have them. I'm 30, my wife is 28. we've been doing the market survey(shopping segment for 3 years now) and recieved the pagers last winter. They must be worn. they will sleep if thye think they aren't being worn, but they are very motion sensitive, so even while sitting still, breathing, stretching and normal body motions keep it awak
        • It only samples a very small demographic: people who want to be monitored.

          That's OK, we already know the people who don't want to be monitored are watching porn.
        • Re:Good idea! (Score:3, Insightful)

          by riflemann ( 190895 )
          It only samples a very small demographic: people who want to be monitored.

          And these are the people they're after. If you're concerned about privacy and not wanting your viewing habits watched, then you're probably too smart to be swayed by TV advertising anyway.
        • It only samples a very small demographic: people who want to be monitored.

          Democracy sucks! It only offers representation to those who are willing to vote.

      • [Nielson's] research system is not perfect, but it's close enough to give advertisers a picture of who's watching what. If it wasn't, Nielson wouldn't be in the TV ratings system for long.

        It appears that the precise duration of "long" will be known shortly.
      • There is the whole problem. The entire system is based on what Advertisers(tm) want on tv. If people paid for TV directly instead of indirectly through the companies who advertise, then maybe there would be better choices.
    • ...latest reality show, WHO WANTS TO MARRY A MIDGET MILLIONAIRE APPRENTICE?

      I still prefer the one from College University [collegeuniv.com]:
      "Who Want's To Live on the Real Survivor Idol Millionare Island Dance and Chili Cookoff!"
      [ link to episode [collegeuniv.com] -- WARNING: FLASH! ]

    • Perhaps then the demographics will represent the hip, happening and geeky crowd as well as whatever boring old fogies Nielson represents.
      I'm no expert in the matter, but if Nielson is doing its job properly, they would be using a representative sample of the population of T.V. viewers (of which you and your friends are but a small fraction) or a representative sample of the population of T.V. viewers willing to pay for stuff (of which you and your friends may be an even smaller fraction).

      Then again I'm
    • Firefly was cancelled because the ratings didn't justify the production costs. Fox didn't do the show any favors with the out of order run and timeslot, but they didn't cancel it because they were making too much money or anything.
  • Google's MO (Score:4, Funny)

    by tommertron ( 640180 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @06:40AM (#15557827) Homepage Journal
    Google's MO is information collection and research.

    ... and word processors. Oh, and web accelerators.

    • Re:Google's MO (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Google's MO is information collection and research.
      ... and word processors. Oh, and web accelerators.

      ...that, in turn, collect more information and produce better research results.
    • Re:Google's MO (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ciroknight ( 601098 )
      Web accelerators and Word Processors lend themselves brilliantly to information collection and research. Accelerators help the company to see what pages are loading slowly and why, word processors help them see what people are writing about and technologies of dealing with it (such as different compression algorithms, search algorithms, etc).

      Add spreadsheet in there and maybe Google's trying to find a better way of extracting metadata from Spreadsheets. Add blogs in there and maybe Google's trying to fin
      • FYI: Google already owns Blogger [blogger.com].
      • lends itself to Google's core business: helping people find things.

        I think you meant to type "helping advertisers sell things", because Google sure as heck doesn't make money (you know, what businesses do) by helping people find stuff. That's more of a pleasant side effect. But yes, everything they do is lniked to this.
        • If Google does a better job at helping people find things, more people will use Google, and thus there will be more people to advertise to, which means more money.

          So, you're incorrect. Google does, in fact, make money by helping people find things.
  • Long tail (Score:3, Insightful)

    by KayEss ( 976633 ) <k@kiri[ ]om ['t.c' in gap]> on Sunday June 18, 2006 @06:52AM (#15557842) Homepage
    Wonder if either of them will actually manage to get the long tail of consumption recorded? Then maybe the rest of us won't have to put up with all of the rubbish that passes entertainment in the mass market.
    • Already happening (Score:4, Interesting)

      by apnielsen ( 981522 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @08:23AM (#15557961)

      Nielsen's been working on total measurement for years. Arbitron and VNU (current holders of Nielsen Media research) got together [mediaweek.com] to build Project Apollo [wired.com]. However, because of the trouble [boston.com] Arbitron is having getting its Portable People Meter accredited, Apollo's deploying Nielsen's A/P Meter instead [broadcastingcable.com], which I've commented on before [slashdot.org].

      I work at Nielsen Media at the GTIC facility in Oldsmar FL and I've been hearing about Apollo for many years, but it seems that the rest of the world has only heard about it recently. Project Apollo has been described (internally) as the "holy grail" of measurement, which follows a consumer across every media channel and measures the affect on purchasing habits.

      What it looks like Google is doing is a subset of Project Apollo, and even if it could compete on the TV/video side they probably need to license [uspto.gov] the [uspto.gov] tech [uspto.gov] from Nielsen. I'd love to have Google as an ally, but as a competitor I think they'll find Nielsen pretty hard to dislodge.

      • Sounds great. What are the operations outside the US like? I live in Thailand, but I still consume US and UK television on satelite. Are you heading that far down the tail?

        At the moment I end up paying a lot to buy DVDs of shows when I'm back in the UK because all the ones I want to watch just aren't available over here. I guess that does get counted somewhere, but I'm also guessing it isn't data that Nielsen are selling anybody.

        • Nielsen Media Research (NMR) mainly does TV ratings, so DVD sales don't really count. ACNielsen (ACN) does consumer market research, which does track DVD sales. VNU now owns both, which is what makes Project Apollo possible in the first place.

          VNU has media and market services in 100 countries, including Thailand. NMR operates television and radio measurement services and ACN operates consumer market measurement services, both out of Bangkok. Granted, the Thai ratings don't mean as much to the major n

      • I work at Nielsen Media at the GTIC facility in Oldsmar FL

        Hail and well met, my fellow swampfronter. ;)
  • by Bluude ( 822878 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @07:05AM (#15557857)
    Yeah, but even in a society where everyone gets a vote, you are still going to have around 20% that like reality shows, 15% that enjoy game shows, 20% that like daytime talkshows, 20% that like medical drama, and 20% that enjoy cop drama. So even in pefect world where everyone is counted, we will still have a lot of crap on tv because there are a lot of stupid people in the world that find comfort in watching the same old crap they have always watched.

    Heck sometimes I think those people are threatened when a new show like firefly comes on. they just don't know how to classify it so they don't bother watching it.
    • by thelost ( 808451 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @08:01AM (#15557938) Journal
      while people do watch dreadful shows I've found that the last reason is that they are stupid. Among my friends the number 1 reason for watching crap TV is that they've spent the whole day working/studying and they just want to switch their brain off. The aforementioned tv genres are pretty good for tuning in and dropping out to.

    • Who are you to say people are stupid for watching medical dramas? You sound like an arrogant elitist, the sort who would only watch something if no-one else did, then wonder why they cancelled it.

      Heck sometimes I think those people are threatened when a new show like firefly comes on. they just don't know how to classify it so they don't bother watching it.

      Utterly unbelievable. With an attitude like that, no wonder it was cancelled. People like you probably don't believe in watching commercials either as th

      • GP doen't need to point to medical/cop dramas to prove his point about a lot of stupid people. One just needs to go to a public place and observe for a while, it becomes obvious very quickly.

        Someone who is going off on someone else for being an "arrogant elitist" should not start a sentence with "people like you" and then call them stupid.

        Yup, I am sure Firefly was cancelled due to his attitude. That must have been it. I bet mine didn't help either.

        I don't watch commercials, according to your logic I

    • So even in pefect (sic) world where everyone is counted, we will still have a lot of crap on tv because there are a lot of stupid people in the world that find comfort in watching the same old crap they have always watched. Heck sometimes I think those people are threatened when a new show like firefly comes on. they just

      Oh, boohoo. Television is a medium for illiterates to receive instant gratification. If you think you are too good for that, go to your local library.
    • "...we will still have a lot of crap on Slashdot because there are a lot of arrogant, self-important fartsniffers in the world that find comfort in sniffing the same old farts they have always sniffed."

      *plonk*
    • You think it's coincidence that the type of tv programmes you listed are the cheapest ones to produce?
      They push the shows thats the cheapest, yet above the limit of view-a-bility for the general public (Sorry for my english). How much do you think a reality or game show costs?

      Here in Spain normally only air tv is available without paying, with 5 nationwide channels, plus a few regional channels maybe. In the afternoon on ~3 of the main channels they show "Telenovelas", which are romance dramas, incredibly c
    • Firefly did not die of idiots not "getting" it...

      The Network KILLED it, by showing the episodes in random order, at seemingly random times, if at all.

      Any show with any kind of story arc would die the same death if given the same treatment.
      • Yes, I agree firefly died because of the network screwing with it, and I agree with the point made about how it cost too much and the reality shows are cheeper. That is why the network ruined firefly on purpose. It was just a way for them to get out of a contract.
        But when it ended people just watched whatever crap took it's place, and the ad dollars kept rolling in. So the people are partially to blame even if they really had no control. They are responsible for making those low budjet reality shows popular
  • by 91degrees ( 207121 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @08:49AM (#15557989) Journal
    Perhaps it will actually stop the freekin' weird US scheduling.

    Seriously - Why do the studios and advertisers rate the ratings so highly? The system is inherently gamable, so the very act of gathering statistics affects the schedules. This is why they have "sweeps". Is there somethign magical about that time? Nope. It's just when the people who are doing the counting decide they're going to look. If it wasn't for this, there woukld eb a much more regular spread of quality programming throughout the year, rather than the bursts of new episodes followded by weeks of repeats.
    • Sweeps are purely a local market abomination. Sweeps used to be the only times of year that all the local markets could afford diary service. Now that most of the major local markets in the US can afford Local People Meters [everyonecounts.tv] which measure viewing year round (like the National sample has done since 1991), sweeps will likely become meaningless.
  • I wish Google would decide to compete with Nielsen's main business, which is recording what people watch on TV. For the few that don't know (it's at least common knowledge where I live) theirs only about 5,000 people with "Nielsen Boxes" which is hardly a good measurement of the entire country. This is why such good shows get canceled or end early.
    • For the few that don't know (it's at least common knowledge where I live) theirs only about 5,000 people with "Nielsen Boxes" which is hardly a good measurement of the entire country.

      Your information is quite out of date. Last I checked (about a week ago), NMR maintained a sample of 8,144 metered households in the US and they're currently expanding to 10,000. Any high school statistics student can tell you that's more than enough to produce meaningful estimates for any size population.

      • Not only that, but they (at least used to) supplement this with random samples of additional households. Years ago (early 1990s), my family was "Nielsen" for one week. They sent us a little book, one for each TV, and we filled in by hand what was watched on each TV, and by whom (by demographic).

        I expect that they continue to do things like this, to ensure that their monitored households continue to represent an appropriately balanced sampling.
      • Any high school statistics student can tell you that's more than enough to produce meaningful estimates for any size population.

        If the sample is carefully weighed to reflect the demographics of the population it's trying to represent, then this is true. This is NOT the case with Neilsen ratings. Unless you believe that (for example) single urban black men watch exactly the same kind of television white suburban nuclear families do. My understanding is that 90%+ of those metered households are white suburban
  • Google's MO is information collection and research

    I thought it was slitting the victim's throat, drawing renditions of Eric Cartman on the wall in the victim's blood and raiding the victim's fridge.

    I think that's a much better MO.

  • by The Mutant ( 167716 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @10:06AM (#15558139) Homepage
    I've noticed Google page loads seem a hell of a lot slower lately than say one year ago. I'm not sure why, some folks blame Analytics, but it seems that sometime front page loading drags. I've turned off personalised search and it's about the same.

    It's gotten so bad at times that I'm able to open a second tab, load then execute the same search on yahoo! before Google presents its front page.

    In a recent IHT article, Schmidt first admitted problems, mentioning "Those machines are full. We have a huge machine crisis." [iht.com].

    The Register also raised several complaints from users [theregister.co.uk] about the (negative) impact of recent changes.

    I think Google should take a pause, and reinforce their core business before heading out to capture new markets. Their aggressive growth strategy threatens to turn them into the Microsoft of internet computing; get there first, capture the market and worry about quality later.
    • I hit the Google page at least 100 times a day and over the past year it has never taken more than half a second to appear. The times that it was slower than 300-400ms were when my net connection at school was being flooded by virus attacks.

      Maybe your location has something to do with it? Have you tried connecting with multiple net connections?
    • I'm having a hard time prooving your hypothesis. Loads fast for me every time.
      • The problems seem to come and go...now loading fine as well. However lots of complaints (I just linked to two) being raised by folks about their core business.

        And lest we forget, Adwords is under attack by click-fraud and everyday sees the emergence of increasingly viable competitors in search and other business activities that currently account for material amounts of Google's revenue.

        Googles own Annual Report [zdnet.com] to shareholders details a wide area of risks it faces.

        No, I think they are neglecting core busin
    • Your post is a good indication that they worried about quality first, which subsequently got them where they are.
      • Actually they are required to disclose risk as part of SEC regs; issues raised in their annual reports aren't really indicative of any focus on their part, rather it's a regulatory driven acknowledgement of underlying problems.

        Seems to be lots of complaints lately about Google, and issue with service. I love the company and just hope they don't blow it in a rush to dominate all markets.
  • Considering MySpace now is in the top 10 list by traffic volume, Google and Nielsen are just going to show the need for more stupid reality tv and medical dramas.
  • When I first got broadband via cable at the turn of the century, I was a Neilsen family, one of the wired ones, as opposed to the type that fill out diaries ala Arbitron). New cable boxes and modems required Neilsen to come in and disconnect/reconnect their tuner spying hardware, into cable box, VCR, and TV This was in the days before DVRs, and I had a tuner card for my brand new g4 (the power PC processor Mac) , that I was planning to use to watch TV, perhaps digitize it, on my mac, and they saw it there
  • Cuecat flashback.

    Does anyone remember the CueCat and the fact you could hook up the thing to your tv to display websites of a particular product in a commercial?

    It is possible to build better device that will record what channels you remain at for more then 15 minutes and have the computer upload the data to Google through wireless interface.

    Related Slashdot Story to Article:
    Google Researchers Create TV Audio Analysis System [slashdot.org]
  • by 7Prime ( 871679 ) on Sunday June 18, 2006 @11:12PM (#15559972) Homepage Journal
    My boss (I work as a commercial producer for a TV station), is starting to consider dropping Nielson, as many other TV stations around the country are doing. Having a Nielson rating tends to do more harm than good (and trust me, in the rural area I live in, there is NOONE else even close to being able to compete with us for viewership). Large corporations, while still looking to Nielson for guidence, have been doing so less and less. From what I hear, it's quickly becoming one of the biggest concerns in the broadcast industry. So this move to branch out into other fields doesn't surprise me.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Hi folks,
    people using firefox and noscript extension can easily check how many sites uses some script-based systems to spy users. The most widespread systems have the google-analytics.com and imrworldwide.com domains: imrworldwide is a Nielsen brand, while google-analystics... well, it's obvious ;)
    Slashdot.org has google-analytics, so a little disclaimer should be appropriate.

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