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According to a company statement, Nielsen also expanded its count for certain minority groups, reflecting changes in the nation's own demographic makeup. The most stunning increase is in the number of Asian TV homes, rising by 3.2% to 4.22 million. Hispanic TV homes are up 2.9% to 11.23 million and African-American homes are up by 0.8% to 13.2 million.
The measurement company has been under pressure to more accurately reflect viewing in minority homes from Don’t Count Us Out, a coalition group backed by News Corp. but also involving numerous political figures across the country.
Baby boomer increases
In what might be considered bad news for broadcasters looking to get younger and target the 18- to 49-year-old demographic, Nielsen said its new universe estimates show a big boost in the number of baby boomers. The estimates show the largest percentage increases in those over the age of 55. Compared with 2003, the 2005-06 season will see a leap in women aged 55-plus from 35 million to 36.2 million and in men aged 55-plus from 28.3 million to 29.7 million.
Nielsen bases its estimates on data from a number of sources including Claritas, the U.S. Census Bureau and the company’s own TV samples. The company reports its TV household estimates every September.