Online video usage study illustrates differences between observed and self-reported measures

Joe Mandese’s Online Media Daily story explains why a Ball State study shows that online video usage has been “vastly overstated.”  The reason:  Previous estimates were based on people self-reporting what they watched, while the Ball State (rather expensive and labor intensive) study actually observed them.

Watching online video is perceived as cool, while watching a lot of TV…not so cool.  Hence the overstatement of the former and the understatement of the latter.

What this means for measuring video usage:  Rely more on your internal video metrics (e.g.,  number of times a video was viewed, how much of it was viewed, whether it was forwarded) than on attitudinal research.