Sunbeam TV stations in Miami, Boston drop Nielsen

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WSVN-TV, a leading station in Miami, on June 23 told Nielsen Media Research it was canceling its ratings service effective June 30, Electronic Media Daily Fax edition reported. The cancellation also includes WHDH-TV, Boston, which like WSVN is owned by Sunbeam Television. In a letter to Nielsen, WSVN General Manager Robert Leider said that since the introduction of the Nielsen Hispanic Station Index in 1994, the ratings service has been weighting its sample to incorporate too many viewers who speak only Spanish, resulting in a sharp decline in measured viewing of the market's English-language stations. "The understated viewership of WSVN that results from Nielsen's flawed methodology represents an enormous financial loss to Sunbeam Television,'' Mr. Leider wrote. "Until corrective measures are taken, we will not continue to finance a deficient measurement service.'' Officials at Nielsen could not be reached for comment.

Copyright June 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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