Turnover Sends Houston PPM In-Tab Down
September 25, 2007 at 11:18 AM (PT)
ALL ACCESS has learned that another issue has occurred in regards to ARBITRON's HOUSTON PPM data -- this time with in-tab levels dropping significantly. A source told us, "I hesitate to use this cliché again but 'HOUSTON, we have a problem.' The HOUSTON SEPTEMBER week-two sample (Total Persons 6+) has dropped significantly, the weekly in-tab dropping to a record low, losing 70. Conversely, PHILADELPHIA is up slightly and continues to be traveling in the right direction."
ARBITRON explains the drop as the result of panelists being rotated out of the system. Said ARBITRON SVP/Press & Investor Relations THOM MOCARSKY, "The HOUSTON panel is over two years old. As such, we have panelists that are timing out of the panel, having hit their two-year anniversary. We retire exiting panelists at the beginning of each month. As this survey was the first month of SEPTEMBER, we deinstalled 25 homes (representing about 50 people)."
Somewhere in the 'data warehouse,' Larry, Curly and Moe continue to work their mysterious magic, while radio hopes they can get it right.
MOCARSKY continued: "Folks who make it all the way through two years are usually our best compliers, so we took a step backwards in in-tab going from a 6+ DDI of 90 to 85 this week. In PHILLY the panel is much newer and we do not yet have folks at their two-year timeout. We deinstall folks who have hit their two-year anniversary only once a month, so expect to continue back making progress next week."
Predictably, that explanation hasn't mollified everyone. COX Pres./CEO BOB NEIL commented, "ARBITRON does a lousy job at communicating, like all monopolies. They knew they had a large number of panelists leaving the sample, but they didn’t disclose it to their customers in any formal way. They talk 'transparency,' but you’re left to wonder what their definition of 'transparency' is. Somewhere in the 'data warehouse,' LARRY, CURLY and MOE continue to work their mysterious magic, while radio hopes they can get it right. And we seem to keep getting the pie in the face."