Publishing Guidelines for Nielsen Topline Radio Ratings

Nielsen provides radio ratings estimates for either persons aged 6+ (Portable People Meter®-based surveys) or persons aged 12+ (Radio Diary-based surveys) for Monday through Sunday, 6 a.m. to Midnight, for each of the monthly or quarterly surveys on Additional estimates may be provided.

Fair Use Guidelines For Using Nielsen Radio Audience Estimates In News Stories

Nielsen is willing to grant to newspapers and other publications that write about radio or other media a nonexclusive license to publish a limited, newsworthy amount of copyrighted data. In the case of radio, estimates are limited to those radio stations that subscribe to Nielsen. A non-subscribing radio station’s data cannot be used nor characterized in any way, shape or form.  

In general, when writing about the standings of the radio stations in a market, only estimates for Persons 6+ in PPM-measured markets or Persons 12+ in Radio Diary-measured markets may be published, regardless of the source of the information.

All other demographic information (Persons 25-54, Men 18-34, etc.) may only be used in a form that does not publish the actual estimate. Ranking or characterizing the data is acceptable, e.g. Station WAAA is #2 in Men 25-54. Demographic information may only be used in the context of a story. Publishing the ranking of the actual estimates is prohibited.

All tables of estimates and ranking must be accompanied by the appropriate copyright notice (e.g., Copyright © 2013 The Nielsen Company). All estimates, and rankings without estimates, must be properly sourced as to survey period, survey area, demographic, daypart and estimate (e.g., Nielsen Topline Radio Ratings, Spring 2012, New York Metro, Persons 6+, Monday-Sunday, 6 a.m.–Midnight, Average Quarter-Hour Share).

NOTE: Estimates may not be published until the day after Nielsen releases the information to clients, regardless of the source of the information.

A subscribing radio station can use Nielsen data to promote its performance per its license with Nielsen. Should a station provide your publication with an 18-34 or 25-54 ranking, you may use the information as background for a story about the station. The ranking of discrete demos cannot be published. A station cannot give you permission to reprint the estimates as a ranker for all the other stations in its market. A subscribing station is not authorized to disclose estimates of non-subscribing stations. If you have any questions regarding a station’s subscribing status, please contact Brigit Hennaman at (917) 224-8246.

Example of appropriate use:

Allowed: “Happy Herman’s Men 18-34 share took a beating in Toon Town when Merry Mooney signed on for the morning shift at WNXX. Herman, who ruled the roost in Spring ranking number 1 in AQH share, saw Mooney chew away a full third of his core demo. The Summer survey dropped Herman to fourth in the market and Mooney jumped to the top among the morning talk fans.”

Not allowed: “The 18-34 race in RadioTown USA is heating up. WAAA took top honors, with a 5.4 share, up half a share from the previous survey. WBBB is a close second, with a 5.2. In the middle of the pack are WCCC, with a 4.3, WDDD, a 4.2, and WEEE, posting a 4.1. WFFF pulled only a 3.5, while WGGG came close with a 3.3 share. There are no cheers for WHHH, with a dismal 1.8, and the Big Band AM WBND posted an unsurprising 0.9 share.”