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BARB prepares for “defining moment” in ratings reporting

From Monday, BARB will begin reporting viewing figures for SVoD and video-sharing platforms into its daily reporting to the television and advertising industry

From Monday 29th November the UK’s TV ratings company BARB will undergo a “defining moment” when it extends its services to cover SVoD and videosharing platforms for the first time.

The figures will include measurement of audiences to streaming services, even without their active participation in BARB.

As part of the change, BARB is implementing a new Total Identified Viewing definition, which includes three constituent parts.

Total broadcaster viewing represents the time spent watching linear broadcast channels and broadcaster-owned VoD services (BVoD). This includes live viewing, as well as pre- and post-broadcast viewing, and viewing to archive box-sets on a BVoD service.

Total SVoD/AVoD viewing is a new definition that BARB says reflects its ability to track how people watch VoD services provided by streaming businesses. It collects time spent viewing 16 VoD services — notably Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus and Netflix — most of which rely on subscription income. BARB intends to report viewing on all four screens, although this only includes viewing through a home’s WiFi network as these services aren’t tagged.

Total video-sharing viewing will include — again on all four screens — use of platforms such as TikTok, Twitch and YouTube. As with the SVoD/AVoD category, BARB’s reporting for video-sharing platforms only includes viewing through a home WiFi network.

In preparation for the change, BARB has published a whitepaper for its customers.