"When the only tool you have is a hammer, then every problem begins to look like a nail."
- Abraham Maslow
In the world of statistics and research, methodology is paramount. That's pretty basic. If you're going to draw a conclusion from the polling of a sample, the methods you use to extract those answers had damn well better be solid. Because in the end, the way this data is gathered defines the final outcome.
And this is exactly why I say that the Arbitron ratings for satellite radio
listening are wrong. Indeed, they're bullshit.
Maybe that was a bit harsh, I'm sorry. Let's instead say that these ratings are for "information purposes only," because that's how Arbitron refers to them.
Mind you, the criticism that's about to ensue has absolutely nothing
to do with terrestrial radio and how its listenership is measured. That's a whole different issue. This is meant to point out the flaws in how Arbitron measures satellite radio listenership
and nothing more. So when I say that "Arbitron's ratings are wrong" I mean for Sirius and XM, and not regular radio.
So let's begin.Reason #1The Arbitron Diary.
Actually, it's the methodology for terrestrial radio ratings that's screwing it all up. Arbitron's diary is built from the ground up to measure AM/FM. Not Internet Radio. Not Satellite Radio. Not even HD Radio (that is, if anyone was listening to HD Radio). It's meant for good ol' regular radio and nothing else.
Here's a big problem: There is no checkbox for a listener to select "Satellite Radio." None. Nothing for Sirius. Nothing for XM. Nothing. Diarykeepers need to actually physically write in
the service and the channel info, in addition to the time they started and stopped listening to the program as well as the location of where they did this. Do you think people will actually write in all that information? Right there, the data becomes tainted.Follow the jump
to keep reading...