The biggest change to TV Ratings in 20 Years is coming… here’s why.

From next Monday, TV ratings will take on a radical new change to reflect how we watch. And the changes are massive.

  • World-first data to better reflect the way we watch
  • OzTAM VOZ market reporting supplied at 11:35am AEDT daily
  • New Reach and National Audience numbers
  • No more daily share supplied to media by OzTAM
  • No more Overnight linear supplied
  • No more city by city breakdowns supplied*
  • No separate Multichannel figures*
  • No separate Subscription TV figures*

Television ratings reporting are being overhauled from Monday by OzTAM in the biggest shake-up in two decades.

A Top 30 will be sent to trade media at 11:35am daily (with no press embargo) designed to reflect “the way we watch” by no longer supplying Linear Overnight numbers separately.

The changes address issues around Linear Overnight numbers only telling part of the story and to improve on a Total TV figure which so far has been released later than Linear numbers.

Now it will also include Reach….

New OzTAM VOZ reports will include:

  • Total TV National Reach (the number of national viewers who have seen at least 1 minute of a television show via Linear or 15 secs of BVOD such as 7Plus, 9Now, 10Play etc)
  • Total TV National Audience (an Average of above)
  • BVOD National Audience (an Average of national viewers via BVOD)
  • Demographics: Total Ppl, Ppl 25-54, Ppl 16-39, Grocery Shoppers (18+)

OzTAM will also issue Total TV Consolidated 7 Top 30 programs to show how programmes have lifted in the past 7 days as well as Total TV ‘When Watched’ weekly cumulative reach every Tuesday.

The VOZ data includes all metro and regional aggregate markets including the new Rest of Australia combined market.

Although industry Survey does not commence until Sunday February 11 the new changes will take effect from Monday.

This will mean later publication of figures every day and the end of some data results.

OzTAM will also be removing some Reports from their website to avoid incorrect Year on Year comparisons.


Why are the daily Overnight TAM and STV reports and the daily rolling FTA C7 TPR distributed to journalists ceasing?
Understanding the true picture of Total TV performance requires a Total TV view.
Total TV reach figures provide the most accurate picture of all-screen program consumption and campaign performance over time.
The move to Total TV reach-based reports supports the industry’s move towards VOZ as currency.
Ceasing production of the multiple separate reports currently emailed to journalists with data licence agreements in favour of the new VOZ Total TV website reports will streamline and simplify reporting practices and minimise confusion between the various datasets.

How do reach and audience figures differ?
Reach is the sum of unique (individual) viewers who have watched at least one minute of a program or daypart across its total duration. This means an individual is only counted once if they have viewed at least one minute (broadcast TV) and/or 15 seconds (BVOD) of the program.
Reach differs to audience, which is the sum of all individuals watching each minute of a program/daypart divided by the duration of the program/daypart to give an average minute audience across the duration of the event being analysed.

Why is broadcast TV based on a viewing threshold of 1-minute and BVOD on 15-seconds for reach results?
1-minute reach is the decades long industry accepted standard for broadcast TV reach.
15-second reach for BVOD represents the unique count of people who have watched at least 15 seconds of the program. This count provides a television reach-like number.
15 seconds also reflects the fact that online broadcast video is premium content which enjoys high viewer engagement rates.
The 15-second BVOD standard reinforces the Australian television industry’s commitment to a measurement metric whereby to ‘count’ the content must be of sufficient duration to capture the consumer’s attention.

Why aren’t historical audience reports on the OzTAM and VOZ websites any longer?
To avoid confusion and not-like-for-like comparisons:
o Reach and audience-based reporting are different calculations
o Also, viewing aggregation rules – notably for ’spill viewing’ at a national level – have been updated in the latest VOZ Total TV website reports. Refer to following question for TAM vs VOZ differences.

How do we report correctly from the new reach-based VOZ reports?

Here are some sample sentences for how to accurately report from the new VOZ data:

“On Monday 15th January 2024, 12.329 million people nationally were reached by broadcaster content either via broadcast linear TV or BVOD.”
“10.475 million people nationally watched at least 1 minute of broadcast TV on the 15th January 2024.”
“Across the 7 days from 8th January to 14th January, 6.691 million people nationally watched at least 15 seconds of BVOD.”
“The program with the highest Overnight Total TV reach on 15th January was 2024 AUSTRALIAN OPEN D2-NIGHT with 2.424 million people.”
“Seven News had a reach of 2.243 million people across broadcast TV and BVOD nationally last night.”
“In the Consolidated 7 rankings for 8th January 2023, HOME AND AWAY on Seven ranked 5th with a national Total TV reach of 1.393 million people, a national Total TV audience of 936,000 and 174,000 for national BVOD.”
“Gladiators on 10 launched with a national Total TV reach of 1.349 million people and an average Total TV audience of 556,000.”

OzTAM is jointly owned by Seven, Nine and 10 Networks.

* Full panel results are available to OzTAM subscribers such as networks, agencies etc.


21 Responses

  1. I obviously missed this. What is BVOD? Ive glanced at it, but am completely overwhelmed by it. I dont like change, and tv shows/movies and viewing stats are measured by the ratings. This however, is clear as mud. I feel as if ‘Big Brother’ has arrived and is not appreciated. This is the 3rd?? ratings format change in ? years. I also remember when Blue Heelers was the top show for years on end. (My fave in its heyday)., and regularly received over 2 million viewers. More like 4-5 million. (or was it around 7 million?). I do remember that then ratings system was halved for what we just had. The new system has too many tech words to try to understand. Many thanks for posting this extensive report, David. Appreciated.

  2. The whole “reach” thing is a joke tbh with you. A person watching for just a minute counts. That doesn’t show a true guide to the real figures. The networks clearly doing this to make themselves look better because tv viewing is failing and they need to sell it to the advertisers but at the end of the day people will see right through them. Honestly don’t like it. National figures is great but yeah no network share figures (from my understanding), just shows it’s all a coverup.

  3. This is a major series of changes. It will be interesting to see how they play out, and what additional information about the TV ratings that we will be able to learn as a result. That being said, it will be very sad to lose some of the information we’ve been getting for years, such as the five city metro breakdowns, which can be very interesting as they show how different cities respond to different programs.

  4. All of it a bit much for me I kind of turned into Santa’s Little Helper but I will follow along and I’m sure you will get me sorted David Knox thank you 😊

  5. Why count 15 seconds of BVOD? What a useless metric that is in calculating reach. This change is not designed to reflect how media is now consumed, this is change only to make lagging figures look better to advertisers and in press releases. Watch the end of year bragging rights go nuts as networks claim highest reach, highest reach on launch, highest reach during a winner announced section of a programme, etc. the metrics will come thick and fast with massive numbers that are millions over the actual numbers that watched their offerings. There’s a reason why the rest of the world doesn’t report ratings like this.

    Personally I’d prefer to see a share system included, sort of like the US, but one that includes streamers as well. That would be a better reflection of the true health of FTA.

  6. This is going to be interesting when the official ratings begin on 11/2. A lot of Aussies are going into live BVOD streaming these days. I wonder how high the ratings stack up.
    However I don’t like it when they release the ratings at 11:30am. I think it’s too late for tv enthusiasts. I am wondering whether you will continue to release the daily ratings as metro on TVT?

  7. It will be interesting to see the winners/losers here. I suspect ABC/SBS may see an overall bump. I wonder how it will play out with regional affiliates. Eg Win, Prime etc.

  8. Going forward we won’t know how certain city specific shows are going such as 9 News Melbourne with the new presenters apart from the dribble that the networks concoct to make it sound better.

    Also you do not reach anyone from 15 seconds of content. You’re including people who clicked on the wrong show by mistake among other things.

    Finally I guess we won’t see how 95% of the multichannel programmes are doing seeing as though they are much smaller numbers. I’d say some ABC Kids programming would be in the top 30 programmes but something like Neighbours won’t be.

  9. So overnights will still be supplied but include streaming figures too?

    As much as broadcasters whine about them they’re still the best indicator on if a show is a hit or a flop and it would be to nobodies advantage to wait a week to see if a show has flopped.

  10. The total tv audience should be the standard reported on – not the reach which is simply put, a useless snippet of information designed to make the networks that own OzTam more money. It’s so telling that in their suggestion on how to report on the new ratings data, the first thing they tell journalists to write about is the reach. Average is a fairer more accurate measure of engagement with a television program.

    1. +1.

      The Chase and Tipping Point will have a massive reach at 5.58pm. But look at The Chase’s (and Hot Seat’s) numbers for the 5pm half-hour portion. It will be way lower than the shows end.

  11. Boo. I don’t like change! lol. I like coming in from 10am onwards to check the ratings. Now, it will be after 11.30am.

    So, we will now have two top 30 lists from next week? A Total National Audience (average of a show) coming from cities and regionals? And another list of Total National Reach (people who watched 1 minute of a show, or 15 seconds from certain platforms)?

    1. Not exactly. Total TV Overnight Top 30 programs, which is the main area of interest will have 3 x numbers beside each show: Reach / TV National Aud / BVOD Nat Aud -the latter is broken out, but not Linear TV anymore.

  12. Why 11:35am AEDT? Why not 11:35am SYD time? It’ll get very confusing during the winter months when everyone is back to using AEST and the data is still being published on AEDT.

    1. Are OZTAM following the networks lead in falsely claiming a “World first”. Metro+Regional isn’t a new innovation – most countries report the entire countries ratings. And pretty sure the UK has included BVOD in their overnights for a while now.

      Not sure what the benefit of scrapping the city breakdowns either.

  13. Why isn’t past data available to cover up the fact that 2m used to watch Blue Heelers a procedural soap, but now 235,000 watch Total Control, even though it’s ad free.

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