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BizReport : Internet : May 23, 2007

IAB has a timetable for comScore, Nielsen audits

Several weeks ago comScore and Nielsen//Netratings, two of the largest online metrics firms, committed to audits by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Now the IAB says they have a timetable for those audits and are moving forward.

by Kristina Knight

During a summit Wednesday, the IAB announced that Nielsen//Netratings has entered into the full auditing process while comScore will be ready for an audit within the next 90 days. The company is currently completing a pre-audit.

The audits were called for in April, with the IAB explaining that there needs to be an industry-wide standard for measuring the online audience. Both measurement firms rank traffic, visits to websites and market share for different entities, but those numbers can be vastly different even when tracking the same companies during the same time periods.

By sharing their research methodologies and giving greater visibility to the process, the IAB believes the online marketplace will grow at an even faster clip because advertisers will know more exactly how websites compare to one another. We will also learn how the online audience actually interacts with websites, ads and content.

In addition to asking comScore and Nielsen//Netratings to submit to audits, the IAB recently put their own spin on online measurement by issuing guidelines for measuring the audience. They are asking for public comment on the guidelines.

Tags: comScore, IAB, Nielsen//NetRatings, online advertising metrics

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