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Nielsen to Expand TV Measurement to Seven Days, Moonves Says

CBS Corp. Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves said the television industry is moving toward counting viewership over seven days in response to the growing use of digital video recorders and online viewing.

Nielsen, the New York-based company that measures TV audiences, will adopt a seven-day standard next year, an increase from the current three days, Moonves predicted yesterday at an investor conference sponsored by Deutsche Bank AG.

CBS’s TV shows draw about 40 percent of their audience on digital video recorders, video-on-demand services and online, Moonves said. If a show is watched within three days of airing, the network is paid by advertisers for those viewers. Networks and advertisers are discussing whether later viewing should be discounted or if new ads should be inserted, he said.

“We want Nielsen to count everybody,” Moonves said. “Ultimately, we want an eyeball to count as an eyeball no matter where you watch your television show.”

CBS, controlled by Chairman Sumner Redstone, gained 0.5 percent to $43.78 yesterday at the New York close. The stock has climbed 15 percent this year.

Nielsen already provides networks and advertisers with seven-day commercial viewing, Moonves said. What’s missing is agreement between advertisers and programmers, he said.

“It’s coming right around the corner,” Moonves said. “That will be good for us.”

Television networks and advertisers will decide which data to use as a basis for their transactions, Nielsen said in an e-mail response to questions about Moonves’s comments.

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