How do Nielsen TV ratings work?

Have you ever wondered exactly how the Nielsen TV ratings system works?  Have you ever pondered how Nielsen figures out what people are watching live versus time-shifted (i.e., on a digital video recorder) or the accuracy of their demographic sample?  Have you every wished you could have the intricate ins and outs of the system explained to by puppets?  Then today is your lucky day because I have just what you need below.

Fortunately for me I worked at Nielsen for a number of years and had three of the world’s experts (a special thanks to my friends Larry, Dave and Marie) explain this process to me in person.  They’re not puppets but I think they’d agree that they’re the next best thing.

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