Harker Research Looks Into PPM's Universal 10 Minutes
July 29, 2014 at 4:58 PM (PT)
HARKER RESEARCH took some time in its Radio Insights blog to ponder the mystery behind PPM's universal TSL of 10 minutes. "No matter the format, PPM panelists listen exactly 10 minutes," RICHARD HARKER and GLENDA SHRADER BOS wrote. "Well, now and then maybe nine minutes, but you get the idea. Identical listening durations across formats is perhaps the most enigmatic aspect of what is arguably the most enigmatic radio listening measurement ever devised.
"How did ARBITRON explain this phenomenon as PPM rolled-out?" they asked. "They didn’t. There is no explanation. Yet study after study since has found the same thing. Everyone listens to the radio for the same length of time. This is how the Daily Occasions meme developed. If everyone listens the same length of time, then there’s no point in trying to increase duration. Can’t be done."
Yet, still ... "But think about the reasonableness of an identical listening span for every format from News-Talk to Urban and everything in between," the duo said. "Does that make sense? Is it possible that maybe the meter has a hard time consistently decoding which station it is hearing for any length of time over 10 minutes?"
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