"Broadcasters are bound to ratings with chains of gold which they are reluctant to break..." -Oren Harris, House of Representatives This comprehensive exploration of the evolution of broadcast ratings documents the experiences of ratings pioneers from past to present as they have developed a standardized network and local market ratings vocabulary. Buzzard traces the rise of Nielsen and Arbitron to their present position of dominance in the ratings business and also ties conceptual changes in the methods and terminology used to measure audiences to advertising and marketing and the competitive factors that shaped them.
Karen S. Buzzard (BA, Drury College, Springield, MO; MA, University of Iowa, Iowa City; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison) is an assistant professor at Northeastern University, Boston, where she teaches courses in broadcasting and communication management. She worked for two years as Director of Research at an independent UHF in Philadelphia and specializes in broadcast ratings and management. She is the author of the forthcoming Electronic Media Measurement Methods: Turning Audiences into Dollars and Sense (Focal Press, 1991)