Latino Researchers to Vet Ratings

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In a move to address concerns about its ratings of minority viewing, Nielsen Media Research has signed a team of Latino social scientists to evaluate its sampling, recruitment and training in order to make sure its ratings accurately measure Latino viewing habits.

Alleged undercounting of minorities, particularly Latinos, has been the knock on Nielsen's new People Meters by some in the Hispanic community.

Nielsen has formed an alliance with Hispanic research organization, the William C. Velasquez Institute, which will review its methodologies to improve its tracking of Latino viewing patterns.

"Nielsen Media Research looks forward to building on this new strategic relationship with the William C. Velasquez Institute, " said Nielsen President Susan Whiting.

The institute is an arm of the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project, a Latino voter-participation group.
Nielsen went live and solo with its People Meters in top market New York Sept. 1 despite strong criticism from Hispanic groups and Fox. The meters have been up and running in Boston since 2002 and are running alongside diaries in Los Angeles and Chicago, with San Francisco to be added Sept. 30. All three are expected to be People Meter-only by year's end.

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