Nielsen Adds Amazon Prime Viewing Numbers (With A Catch); Verizon Explores HuffPost Sale

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The Stream Team

Nielsen now offers Amazon Prime Video audience measurement in its Subscription Video On Demand (SVOD) Content Ratings. Nielsen launched SVOD ratings about two years ago with broadcast customers that wanted credit for streaming content, including NBCUniversal, Disney and A+E Networks. But Nielsen’s additions to the product since then have come with a serious grain of salt. Nielsen added Netflix to the subscription measurement program last year, but the streaming service disputed the numbers. Nielsen’s SVOD numbers come from an undisclosed subset of its national TV panel that agrees to also have its ad-free streaming time tracked. The methodology is a little fuzzy and only includes CTV audiences, which means people that watch Amazon Prime or Netflix on their phone or computer aren’t counted. But even a foggy window into those audience black holes is valuable. Sony Pictures Television, for example, uses Nielsen’s numbers to understand how and where to find SVOD viewers in ad-supported OTT services or on-demand TV, said James Petretti, the studio’s SVP of US research and analytics, in a release Nielsen emailed to reporters. He said it also helps attribute how linear TV commercials drive audiences to those shows on subscription services.

A New Day

News Corp, one of Facebook’s biggest publisher antagonists, has reached a deal with the social media giant to run stories within Facebook’s forthcoming news tab. Facebook will pay News Corp an annual licensing fee for headlines from The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones and the New York Post that could top a few million dollars, the Journal reports. Discussions were on hold as News Corp tried to figure out how to participate in the program without undercutting its own digital subscription business. Facebook’s news tab, which will not include advertising, will feature both human and algorithmically curated links that direct back to publisher sites and uphold their paywalls. “Facebook deserves credit for recognizing the principle of journalistic provenance,” said News Corp CEO Robert Thomson. “Mark Zuckerberg seems personally and professionally committed to ensuring that high-quality journalism has a viable, valued future. It is absolutely appropriate that premium journalism is recognized and rewarded.” WSJ has more.

HuffPost For Sale

Verizon Media is seeking a buyer for HuffPost, one of the most popular websites the media network picked up through its $4.4 billion acquisition of AOL in 2015. A sale of HuffPost would continue Verizon’s retreat from former CEO Tim Armstrong’s vision to build a media conglomerate under the telco backed by an overarching ad tech stack. Verizon’s strategy now appears to be more about unraveling the media network it has amassed as it failed to rise as a viable competitor to Facebook and Google. The telco sold off Tumblr, which it gained through its $4.5 billion acquisition of Yahoo in 2017, for a paltry $3 million in August, and laid off 7% of its media staff, or 800 people, at the beginning of the year. TechCrunch has more.

But Wait, There’s More

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