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Ratings Analysis, 4th Edition by Lawrence Lichty, Patricia Phalen, James Webster

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CHAPTER 3

Audience Measurement Methods

Audience researchers use a variety of methods to study people’s media use. We have mentioned many of these in the preceding pages. In this chapter, we go more deeply into issues of sampling, measurement, and how audience estimates are actually produced. These concerns go directly to the quality of the data. Do different methods have different biases and limitations? How accurate are the estimates available to ratings users? A savvy consumer of audience ratings should know how the data are created.

As we noted in the last chapter, there are two basic strategies for gathering audience data: user-centric approaches and server-centric approaches. Either way, researchers are typically working on one of three ...

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