The Nielsen Company recently became aware that one of our BuzzMetrics legacy data collection practices does not live up to our current standards.
This practice involved registering as an individual user on some websites and then collecting publicly available data. We take nothing more seriously than respect for the privacy of consumers and BuzzMetrics has always respected the wishes of any site operator and complied with any request to cease the collection of data from a website. While the total number of sites requiring individual registration included in our collection of social media data was very small, we felt that it was important to stop this practice altogether and immediately.
Today, we do not include data beyond what is freely available to anyone online via search engines or through normal browsing from any website requiring establishment of an individual account for access without first obtaining consent from the website operator. If a website does not want to be included in the broad, holistic reporting we provide to clients, we will of course respect their decision. BuzzMetrics had already established data acquisition arrangements with a number of websites that require some form of login, and will continue to add others so that we can continue to provide clients with the most robust data coverage in the industry.
Nielsen is committed to making every effort to fully conform to, if not help set, the industry standard for data use practices. By removing this practice from our collection process, we believe we meet that commitment.