Public Radio Panel Develops Proposed Guidelines For Podcast Measurement
February 4, 2016 at 3:59 AM (PT)
A group of public radio staffers tasked with coming up with guidelines for measuring podcast listening released a study TUESDAY (2/2) outlining suggested standards for the medium.
The document, "Public Radio Podcast Measurement Guidelines," notes that podcast usage measurement "is, at best, the Wild West." with no standard or consensus, which has "hampered the ability of this medium to reach its full competitive potential as an alternative to broadcast and other sponsorship media with well-defined and widely adopted audience measurement and performance standards." Pointing out that the guidelines are "not intended to operate as a full technical standard" but instead as overall principles leading to "a more robust, transparent sponsorship medium for the mutual benefit of public media outlets and their underwriters" open to being voluntarily adopted by other podcasters.
For internal measurement, the guidelines set forth which download responses should be filtered out of the overall numbers, including certain http response codes and HEAD requests as well as large numbers of repeat requests from single IP addresses and requests from the stations themselves or of less than 200,000 bytes.
The panel suggested a standard for defining "unique downloaders" involving a formula including both IP addresses and individual user agents, recognizing that some VPNs will result in multiple users being reported on the same IP address. IPs and user agents are also included in a formula proposed to calculate the number of unique downloads, accompanied by file path/name and download date.
Read the guidelines here.