Nielsen, Ucentric to Track DVR Usage

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Audience measurement will soon be coming to the digital-video-recorder world with a system developed by Nielsen Media Research and Ucentric Systems.

Under a strategic agreement, the two companies will develop audience-measurement software that will track DVR usage on multiple television sets in households.

The Nielsen tracking software will be incorporated into Ucentric's "Multi-TV" DVR applications running on digital set-top boxes.

As a result, Nielsen will be able to collect usage data -- including tuning, recording and playback statistics in Nielsen households -- as long as the user agrees to the information being collected. The data will not be collected in non-Nielsen households.

"By incorporating audience-measurement capability into our software, we are working with the entire television industry to help manage the commercial systems around advertising, which is fundamentally important to our partners and the industry overall," Ucentric CEO Michael Collette said in a release.

From there, Nielsen will develop a new set of business rules and crediting criteria aimed at giving DVRs and other time-shifting devices a place in the Nielsen ratings statistics, which are used to set advertising rates for television in the United States.

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