Personal, passive, portable Future meters predicted

The future of broadcast measurement will be personal, passive and portable, says the head of Arbitron in the u.s.Stephen Morris, president of the measurement company, told a Broadcast Research Council of Canada luncheon audience with the coming of the three-tv-set home...

The future of broadcast measurement will be personal, passive and portable, says the head of Arbitron in the u.s.

Stephen Morris, president of the measurement company, told a Broadcast Research Council of Canada luncheon audience with the coming of the three-tv-set home the idea of the household in terms of measurement becomes irrelevant.

Morris, the former president of the Maxwell House division of General Foods U.S., told the Toronto audience consumers are going to have a huge choice of media selections with an equally large choice of program options.

Morris says any measurement system of the future needs to deliver on three points.

It must be personal because the household is slipping away; it must be passive because the technology will be too complicated to manage in any other way; and it must be portable because media are going to be wherever the consumer is.

Personal, passive and portable should be thought of as a direction not a specific product, Morris cautions, with this sort of measurement introduced in increments over a long period.

And because choosing what to watch and when to watch it is a personal affair, ‘the household really becomes irrelevant,’ Morris says.

Moreover, he continues, place-based media is going to expand considerably so the consumer will be surrounded.

New York’s Arbitron, which has a joint venture with BBM Bureau of Measurement for the testing and deployment of its passive meter system, expects to conduct encoding tests for its system in Canada this fall and full measurement tests in the fall of 1994.