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75

Ratings and the Institutional Approach: A Third Answer to the Commodity Question

1
terms
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notes

R. Meehan, E. (2014). Ratings and the Institutional Approach: A Third Answer to the Commodity Question. In McGuigan, L. and Manzerolle, V. (eds) The Audience Commodity in a Digital Age: Revisiting a Critical Theory of Commercial Media. Peter Lang Inc., International Academic Publishers, pp. 75-84

76

In broadcasting studies, the situation has been somewhat different with industry organization taking precedence over textual analysis. notions of internal production constraints, external commercial constraints, and of professionalism form the basis for explaining why cultural products reproduce hegemonic ideology. In other words, it explains why in a broadcasting system lacking direct State censorship or control, themes, ideas, claims, values, visions and notions supportive of the capitalist system are promoted via news and entertainment programming, while others critical of the system are reconstructed and re-interpreted in such a way as to co-opt their critical content. Still others are simply excluded [...]

not directly relevant to diss but interesting and worth thinking about further (think of how platforms like Instagram become taken over by marketing logic)

—p.76 by Eileen R. Meehan 1 year, 1 month ago

In broadcasting studies, the situation has been somewhat different with industry organization taking precedence over textual analysis. notions of internal production constraints, external commercial constraints, and of professionalism form the basis for explaining why cultural products reproduce hegemonic ideology. In other words, it explains why in a broadcasting system lacking direct State censorship or control, themes, ideas, claims, values, visions and notions supportive of the capitalist system are promoted via news and entertainment programming, while others critical of the system are reconstructed and re-interpreted in such a way as to co-opt their critical content. Still others are simply excluded [...]

not directly relevant to diss but interesting and worth thinking about further (think of how platforms like Instagram become taken over by marketing logic)

—p.76 by Eileen R. Meehan 1 year, 1 month ago
77

[...] the ratings industry per se and the more specific form of producing ratings for national television are open and competitive--and just happen to have a single more important firm. This lends the status quo within the ratings industry an aura of naturalness; the industry appears to "simply exist" abstracted from the processes of history and the imperative of capitalist economics.

nice way of putting it

—p.77 by Eileen R. Meehan 1 year, 1 month ago

[...] the ratings industry per se and the more specific form of producing ratings for national television are open and competitive--and just happen to have a single more important firm. This lends the status quo within the ratings industry an aura of naturalness; the industry appears to "simply exist" abstracted from the processes of history and the imperative of capitalist economics.

nice way of putting it

—p.77 by Eileen R. Meehan 1 year, 1 month ago

(adjective) requiring immediate aid or action / (adjective) requiring or calling for much; demanding

82

commodities shaped by business exigencies and corporate strategies

—p.82 by Eileen R. Meehan
notable
1 year, 1 month ago

commodities shaped by business exigencies and corporate strategies

—p.82 by Eileen R. Meehan
notable
1 year, 1 month ago
82

[...] instrumental problems that required solutions in order to facilitate transactions between advertisers and broadcasters. The most obvious was to demonstrate the existence of an audience. In economic terms, this meant some measure of productivity. But besides adequate numbers of listeners, a measure was needed to demonstrate that the right product was being produced that the audience for which advertisers expressed a demand was in fact being delivered by broadcasters. Only after agreeing on a basic method for producing measures of productivity and quality could broadcasters and advertisers move to the real business at hand--the buying and selling of audiences according to a rational price structure.

Inherent in the situation, then, is both continuity and discontinuity in the interests of the advertising and broadcasting industries. While continuity rests in the need for an official description of the audience, discontinuity arises from the connection between that description and pricing. [...] neither industry could trust the other to measure productivity and quality, yet both needed some measure in order to transact sales. In this way, despite unified demand for measures of productivity and quality, the situation presented contradictory interests and thereby the possibility for independence for any ratings producer that could successfully manipulate those differences. [...]

think about how this applies to digital advertising? where fb/goog have all the data (massive info asymmetry) and both publishers AND advertisers have to simply trust

remember that time, summer 2013, when doubleclick fucked up and accidentally paid publishers twice? like massive deposits (thousands, at least) doubled for publishers like the NYT. and it took a while to notice

also: nielson is partnering with these companies where they dont themselves have the ability to gatekeep the ratings process (like FB / Nielson partnering for TV shit), but obvs they would prefer to absorb that vertical on their own

—p.82 by Eileen R. Meehan 1 year, 1 month ago

[...] instrumental problems that required solutions in order to facilitate transactions between advertisers and broadcasters. The most obvious was to demonstrate the existence of an audience. In economic terms, this meant some measure of productivity. But besides adequate numbers of listeners, a measure was needed to demonstrate that the right product was being produced that the audience for which advertisers expressed a demand was in fact being delivered by broadcasters. Only after agreeing on a basic method for producing measures of productivity and quality could broadcasters and advertisers move to the real business at hand--the buying and selling of audiences according to a rational price structure.

Inherent in the situation, then, is both continuity and discontinuity in the interests of the advertising and broadcasting industries. While continuity rests in the need for an official description of the audience, discontinuity arises from the connection between that description and pricing. [...] neither industry could trust the other to measure productivity and quality, yet both needed some measure in order to transact sales. In this way, despite unified demand for measures of productivity and quality, the situation presented contradictory interests and thereby the possibility for independence for any ratings producer that could successfully manipulate those differences. [...]

think about how this applies to digital advertising? where fb/goog have all the data (massive info asymmetry) and both publishers AND advertisers have to simply trust

remember that time, summer 2013, when doubleclick fucked up and accidentally paid publishers twice? like massive deposits (thousands, at least) doubled for publishers like the NYT. and it took a while to notice

also: nielson is partnering with these companies where they dont themselves have the ability to gatekeep the ratings process (like FB / Nielson partnering for TV shit), but obvs they would prefer to absorb that vertical on their own

—p.82 by Eileen R. Meehan 1 year, 1 month ago