Between 1993 and 1999, Statistical Research, Inc. (SRI) conducted a television ratings laboratory in the Philadelphia market. S•M•A•R•T (Systems for Measuring and Reporting Television) was initially funded by a consortium of TV networks and ad agencies to develop a ratings service competitive to Nielsen. Despite funding of more than $60 million over the life of the project, the eventual lack of commitment of the sponsors to a full-scale ratings service (not unusual when Nielsen competitors try to go to market) marked the transition of S•M•A•R•T to a “ratings laboratory” from a potential business.
SRI published a number of different papers as a result of the S•M•A•R•T initiative that documented the research undertaken for S•M•A•R•T and its methodological development. Available here is perhaps the most complete collection of the S•M•A•R•T paper available online – actually probably the only collection of these historical documents.
The primary authors of these publications are Gale D. Metzger, President of SRI, and Maura E. Clancey, research lead at SRI.
All these papers were originally published for free distribution to the television and media community, and are presented here in that spirit. The copyrights to these documents continue to reside with Statistical Research, Inc. or its successor companies.