MUMBAI: The Nielsen Company has announced that the Council for Research Excellence (CRE), an independent forum of media industry research experts created by it, will commission a year-long study to observe how individuals consume traditional and emerging video platforms inside and outside the home.

The Video Consumer Mapping Study (VCMS), to be conducted jointly by Ball State University’s Center for Media Design (CMD) and Sequent Partners, a brand and media metrics consultancy, is intended to establish how media – especially television and video – are consumed across multiple platforms, in order to develop best practices in the area of video media measurement.

To conduct the VCMS, researchers will directly observe the activities of sample participants, recording them, with computer assistance, in 10-second intervals throughout their waking day. These observers will categorise participants’ media exposure within the context of their daily activities, location and attention. A sample of 350 people will be measured twice over a six-month period in five major markets – Dallas, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Chicago and Seattle.

In addition to that core sample, another 100 people, located in the Indianapolis market, will be observed both before and after the Media Acceleration Process, a research method developed by Ball State and Sequent Partners, that will help anticipate adoption and usage of emerging technologies and their impact on existing technologies.The decision to proceed with a study of media usage follows the successful completion of a pilot study conducted jointly by Ball State and Sequent Partners in 2007. That study demonstrated that observational techniques can capture a respondent’s usage for the entire day and that it is possible to include in the study all relevant consumer segments, including high-tech and ethnically diverse respondents.