The internet as a template for today’s audience measurement

This article offers a comprehensive discussion of internet measurement and its problems. Digital technology has changed everything, by causing a fragmentation of channels (meaning traditional audience measurement methods can no longer deliver the large sample sizes required) and a dichotomy between machines and people (allowing for the measurement of everything mechanical, but not the vital person-centric measures).

The internet as a template for today's audience measurement

Josh Chasin

The internet, we have been promised from the very beginning, is the 'most measurable medium'. It therefore seems paradoxical that, almost 15 years on, so little consensus exists on the divergent measures available.

However, this is really not paradoxical at all. One consequence of being the most measurable medium is that the internet ends up as the medium with the most measures. We have an embarrassment of riches – panel-based measurement, ISP data, site-centric data, third-party ad server data – all deployed in different configurations to provide different (sometimes...

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