- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 18, 2021

Nielsen Media Research has added a new dimension to its systems of tracking TV programming and the viewers who are tuning in.

The organization has launched Gracenote Inclusion Analytics, a new division set to deliver “unprecedented visibility into the gender, race, ethnicity and sexual orientation of talent appearing in TV programming and the audiences watching it,” the company said in a statement released Thursday.

“The new solution empowers content creators, owners, distributors and advertisers with much-needed data around on-screen diversity and representation to enable more inclusive content,” Nielsen said.

The new company will “accelerate diversity transformation in Hollywood,” the company noted.

In an initial report, Nielsen pointed out that while women make up 52% of the U.S. population, they comprise 38% of the top recurring cast members in popular broadcast, cable and streaming programming.

“At the same time, People of Color account for 40% of the broader population but are present in only 27% of top TV roles. These data points highlight significant imbalances between representation in content and key audience groups which, by addressing, would serve to accelerate equity in entertainment,” Nielsen said.

The diversity analysis will be based on “video program metadata and studio system celebrity race and ethnicity data” plus standard TV and content ratings.

“The entertainment industry has a massive challenge ahead — to ensure the talent associated with popular TV programming mirrors today’s increasingly diverse viewing audiences,” said Sandra Sims-Williams, senior vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion at Nielsen.

“By democratizing information around representation in content, Gracenote Inclusion Analytics holds the power to push the industry toward better balance and a more equitable future,” she said.

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