Netflix has signed up with TV rating agency Barb (Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board), which means its viewership is now measured externally.
From November, the streaming giant’s viewership figures will be reported by the organization that compiles viewership measurements and TV ratings in the UK.
The move makes Barb the first industry-owned audience currency in the world to join Netflix.
Streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video have historically only released snapshots of their viewing data, often highlighting the achievements of their larger shows.
Barb will report Netflix ratings in the same way it reports the ad for more than 300 other subscribed broadcast channels, from mainstream services like BBC and ITV to smaller channels like Dave.
Netflix is reportedly preparing to launch an ad-supported tier for its streaming platform.
His co-CEO Reed Hastings said: “In 2019, at the RTS conference in Cambridge, I welcomed the idea of Netflix audiences being independently measured.
“We have stayed in touch with Barb ever since and are delighted to commit to his reliable measurement of people’s viewing habits in the UK.”
Barb Chief Executive Justin Sampson said: “Our audience measurement continually adapts to the new platforms and devices people are using to watch their favorite TV shows.
“We took a big step forward last year when we started reporting viewers to streaming services.
“Netflix’s commitment to Barb is a clear signal that what we’re doing has value for new and established players in the market.”
Netflix viewing data will be available to all Barb subscribers on the morning of November 2nd via existing analytics software and other systems.
The timing coincides with the launch of season five of lavish royal drama The Crown, which could impact Barb’s ratings in its first few weeks.
As of November, Barb is also releasing monthly numbers for all broadcasters and streaming services that account for more than 0.5% of the total audience.