In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

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Bob-O
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In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Bob-O » Aug 20th, '19, 15:49

I came across this just now and thought it might be insightful to some...



Obviously, one must follow the money to see that Nielson drives the revenue, but that one comment really struck me..
As a former Nielsen and Arbitron member I could see the difference between when I watched wrestling and when I didn’t. I think my one household counted between 50,000 - 100,000 households. So let’s say Raw drops by 200,000 households that can literally mean 4 people chose not to watch.
Let that sink in.

A bigger conversation/can of worms, might be a discussion of generation and changing with the times. Eeeeeverybody, including Vince, but more importantly guys like Meltzer and Alvarez, are going to make this all about that 40 year old box on top peoples television sets instead of relevant technology and trends. AEW is built around modern times and modern fans, but the money is still all held by prior generations stuck to old ways. There's a reason "Trending #1 Worldwide" is such a throwaway statement... it doesn't move money.


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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by NWK2000 » Aug 20th, '19, 16:48

And yet people s till use it to gauge the popularity of TV show... god...
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Thelone » Aug 20th, '19, 16:57

Despite how archaïc it sounds, it's most likely more reliable than whatever online metrics people tend to use. Also aren't there other rating systems, but they aren't used because they would expose how few people really are watching TV nowadays?

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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Bob-O » Aug 20th, '19, 17:44

NWK2000 wrote:
Aug 20th, '19, 16:48
And yet people s till use it to gauge the popularity of TV show... god...
Right!? It's really no different than a restaurant menu being assessed on 1 out of every 10,000 transactions and to-go orders don't count at all.
Thelone wrote:
Aug 20th, '19, 16:57
but they aren't used because they would expose how few people really are watching TV nowadays?
If they were really that worried about covering up the decline of live tv, they'd just go to a percentage system instead of estimated viewership. "USA Network and Monday Night Raw lead the night with 12.5% viewership"

Anyone with a digital service is being tracked, and that's not my tinfoil hat talking - the cable companies have WAY more accurate data on how their own services are used, what's being DVR'd, as well as how and HOW OFTEN you're watching on your DVR - but that data would go to the highest bidder... when you figure in HOW MANY providers would need to be 'bid' on, getting accurate data is going to get a little pricey when a Neilson is a one-stop-shop and a name people are used to.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by XIV » Aug 21st, '19, 05:40

There's two things about the United States I've never understood... 1, why you rate your TV viewings with such a peculiar system and 2, your stupid gun laws, but we'll park that for now and focus on number 1.

In the UK we don't use any other system than the most simple available to us.... how many people tuned in.

If there was a good show or a big final of some talent competition, they will literally report it as "13 million people tuned in" whilst it is still a sort of estimate (based on TV's switched to that channel against the number of people per household), it's still known to be a fairly accurate representation.

Nielsen is outdated and perhaps just being true to the real figures is the way forward. It's always been the way in the UK and it just works. It's simple for TV companies to use. "We averaged 6.5 million viewers last season, now we get 4 million"

Not working off 4.5's vs 3.8's and working out how many actual viewers that could relate to.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Bob-O » Aug 21st, '19, 08:22

XIV wrote:
Aug 21st, '19, 05:40
There's two things about the United States I've never understood... 1, why you rate your TV viewings with such a peculiar system and 2, your stupid gun laws
Don't forget our system of measurement... I live here and don't understand that.

I will, however, defend our globally unique preference to ice our tea. The world needs to catch up, it's delicious and refreshing.
XIV wrote:
Aug 21st, '19, 05:40
In the UK we don't use any other system than the most simple available to us.... how many people tuned in.
But how do they know how many people tuned in? Is there a company like Nielson running surveys or a different method?


My ultimate point is that with wrestling company's, there's two wars being fought. The Popularity War, which is the sexy "mine's better than yours" that the fans are invested in, and the Success War which goes back to the money.

In 1997 the war was fought on one battlefield and Nielson was the only way to gauge the results. Make no mistake, we're all invested in who's more popular, but Nielson really only exists to see who's watching the commercials. That worked 20 years ago as results for everyone, but no so much in 2019. We might as well keep figuring in traditional cable/satellite ppv buys... it's the same mentality. There's so much data to consider now that could be spun so many ways that the "winner" is going to be whoever Meltzer says it is.

I don't really care about how many people watched the commercials.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Thelone » Aug 21st, '19, 09:01

I do think that the ratings war is almost a non-issue all things considered. I've read a few tweets from Dutch Mantell (I think in the middle of the Cornette drama the other day) where he said that it was four more hours of TV wrestling to add to the 3-hour RAW, 2-hour Smackdown, 2-hour Impact, 1-hour ROH and 1-hour MLW in a business that's been dwindling for years and years, which kinda leads to my point.

When Cornette reviewed Fyter Fest for his podcast, he ragged about the "video game nerd" crowd which was mostly 18-35 males. We'll forget the VGN part which isn't relevant, but the 18-35 part very much is. Actually, it tends to be more 30-45 males with very little under and over and few women. That makes me think that the fans now are those who grew up watching the Attitude Era, are used to 2/3-hour shows and think it's normal/how it should be while older fans who grew up watching the territories/early MNM left and never came back because it's too long/silly/whatever, and potential younger fans aren't watching either because they don't have the attention span to stay in front of a 2/3-hour show every week.

I get that the big TV money is in live sports nowadays, but I'm surprised WWE never tried something like a daily 30-minute show from monday to friday with a 1-hour recap show on saturday and sunday free for PPV/network specials. It still would be two and half hours of new content every week (although taped) and much more palatable to the modern audience/viewing habits than a big 3-hour block every monday or multiple 2-hour blocks scattered around the week.

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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by XIV » Aug 21st, '19, 09:27

Bob-O wrote:
Aug 21st, '19, 08:22
XIV wrote:
Aug 21st, '19, 05:40
There's two things about the United States I've never understood... 1, why you rate your TV viewings with such a peculiar system and 2, your stupid gun laws
Don't forget our system of measurement... I live here and don't understand that.

I will, however, defend our globally unique preference to ice our tea. The world needs to catch up, it's delicious and refreshing.
XIV wrote:
Aug 21st, '19, 05:40
In the UK we don't use any other system than the most simple available to us.... how many people tuned in.
But how do they know how many people tuned in? Is there a company like Nielson running surveys or a different method?


My ultimate point is that with wrestling company's, there's two wars being fought. The Popularity War, which is the sexy "mine's better than yours" that the fans are invested in, and the Success War which goes back to the money.

In 1997 the war was fought on one battlefield and Nielson was the only way to gauge the results. Make no mistake, we're all invested in who's more popular, but Nielson really only exists to see who's watching the commercials. That worked 20 years ago as results for everyone, but no so much in 2019. We might as well keep figuring in traditional cable/satellite ppv buys... it's the same mentality. There's so much data to consider now that could be spun so many ways that the "winner" is going to be whoever Meltzer says it is.

I don't really care about how many people watched the commercials.
So, we do have a similar system in that not every household is involved in figures for basic terrestrial, TV ratings are compiled daily by the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board in a similar system of Nielsen but its known to be more reliable. Why this is I'm not entirely sure, TV ratings over here actually matter for very little and aren't really reported on.
It only ever comes up for big events like Internation Football (soccer), International sporting events like the Olympics and major event shows only (talent show finals, certain episodes of programmes).
It's not reported on a daily, weekly or even monthly basis what does what rating because us Brits literally don't care unless it is a monumental occasion.

Every TV in the UK now has Freeview or some form of Sky or Cable box attached which most likely gathers it's own data and provides that, so I imagine that comes into it these days somehow also.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Thelone » Aug 21st, '19, 17:52

TV is still where the big bucks are today, so Nielsen ratings are very important for the time being.

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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by NWK2000 » Aug 23rd, '19, 11:48

XIV wrote:
Aug 21st, '19, 05:40
There's two things about the United States I've never understood... 1, why you rate your TV viewings with such a peculiar system and 2, your stupid gun laws, but we'll park that for now and focus on number 1.

In the UK we don't use any other system than the most simple available to us.... how many people tuned in.

If there was a good show or a big final of some talent competition, they will literally report it as "13 million people tuned in" whilst it is still a sort of estimate (based on TV's switched to that channel against the number of people per household), it's still known to be a fairly accurate representation.

Nielsen is outdated and perhaps just being true to the real figures is the way forward. It's always been the way in the UK and it just works. It's simple for TV companies to use. "We averaged 6.5 million viewers last season, now we get 4 million"

Not working off 4.5's vs 3.8's and working out how many actual viewers that could relate to.
We like wacky systems of measurement here, even if it makes the data confusing at best, completely incomprehensible at worst.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by KILLdozer » Aug 23rd, '19, 11:55

We already talked about this and I shut it down pretty quickly. There's not gonna be a ratings war. Oh, you dudes still are only able to watch one thing or the other? Fuck it then, go ahead.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Bob-O » Aug 24th, '19, 07:16

KILLdozer wrote:
Aug 23rd, '19, 11:55
We already talked about this and I shut it down pretty quickly. There's not gonna be a ratings war. Oh, you dudes still are only able to watch one thing or the other? Fuck it then, go ahead.
If AEW get's within the ballpark of what NXT is pulling in, you're nuts if you think the results won't be compared side by side. It hasn't even started yet and everyone's already got them at "war" lmao... c'mon now...

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My point, along with OP's, is that despite there being several ways to measure the results from week to week as to which show was more popular, Dave Meltzer is going to take his shirt off, rub the Nielson Ratings all over his chest and nipples every week and declare a "winner" from his car window despite Nielson being laughably inaccurate and live viewing being completely irrelevant in 2019.
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Re: In Regard To The Upcoming "Ratings War"

Post by Thelone » Aug 24th, '19, 12:49

Except social media buzz/trending on Twitter/social "interaction" are pretty worthless metrics, because they don't mean anything financially, can be positive as well as negative, and can easily be meddled with via sockpuppet accounts for example. I think it was Kevin Owens who once said, after he was trending on Twitter, that he didn't really care because he didn't have more money in his wallet or something along those lines.

I'm sure Nielsen ratings have their flaws, but it still should be a decent representation of who watches what. What makes this "war" interesting is that they're both virtually unknown to the more casual/mainstream audience and on channels of equal footing. Obviously NXT has less pression because it's only the third brand and will air on the Network the next day, so it's not like you HAVE to choose between one or the other.

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