SAG-AFTRA selects Nielsen for streaming content measurement

SAG-AFTRA selects Nielsen for streaming content measurement

The Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), the union representing over 160,000 media and entertainment professionals, announced a partnership with Nielsen, a global leader in audience measurement, data, and analytics. This agreement designates Nielsen as SAG-AFTRA's third-party provider for streaming content measurement.

The media landscape has undergone a significant transformation in recent years, with a surge in streaming content consumption. This shift has not only impacted how viewers engage with content but also the financial models within the entertainment industry. According to a report by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), streaming video on demand (SVOD) ad spending in the US is projected to reach $32.6 billion in 2024. Accurate measurement of viewership for streaming content is crucial for both content creators and distributors.

Through Nielsen's Streaming Content Ratings service, SAG-AFTRA will gain access to objective, domestic viewership data for original streaming programming. This data will provide valuable insights for the union in several ways:

  • Forecasting: Understanding audience viewership allows SAG-AFTRA to make informed forecasts regarding future trends in streaming content consumption.
  • Contract Enforcement: The data will be used to verify that streaming platforms are fulfilling their contractual obligations to SAG-AFTRA members, particularly concerning the recently negotiated streaming bonus provisions within the 2023 TV/Theatrical Contract.

Nielsen's data serves as an independent and consistent source of audience measurement, complementing the data provided directly by streaming platforms. This allows for a more holistic view of streaming content performance across various distribution channels.

Nielsen CEO Karthik Rao expressed pride in being chosen by SAG-AFTRA as their streaming measurement partner. He emphasized Nielsen's commitment to providing objective and consistent audience insights within the streaming space.

SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director & Chief Negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland highlighted the need for new tools to address the evolving media landscape. He stated that Nielsen's data will enable the union to verify information provided by streaming platforms and ensure contractual obligations are met.

The partnership between SAG-AFTRA and Nielsen represents a significant step towards establishing standardized and reliable measurement for streaming content. This will benefit various stakeholders within the entertainment industry, including actors, content creators, distributors, and advertisers.

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