The failing economy just took its first research casualty. Nielsen and IMMI announced late Friday (Nov. 7) they would suspend their syndicated Out-of-Home Report, which measured viewing to TV outside the home. Since launching in April, the service only managed to sign two clients, ESPN and Zenith Optimedia.
"In the current climate, there is limited economic support for this new measurement service," the company said in a prepared statement.
The final report will cover viewing through Nov. 9, 2008.
Nielsen didn't completely close the door on the project. "We recognize that measuring the out-of-home component of television viewing is an important need for our clients. We will continue to work on out-of-home measurement solutions, including efforts with IMMI," the company said.
The service was based on a panel of 500 participants in six local markets (New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston and Denver) plus 1,700 national panelists. To collect data, IMMI gives respondents a cell phone equipped with software that uses pattern matching to track media exposure.