Reviewing Hey! Nielsen, Nielsen//NetRatings’s Social Network Opening Tomorrow

Posted Sep 23, 2007

Hey! Nielsen is an upcoming entertainment and opinion blog started by The Nielsen Company. Nielsen is a marketing research firm that determines what the ratings are for websites, TV shows, music, etc. A complete listing of Nielsen subsidiaries is available on Wikipedia.

“Hey! Nielsen is a place for fans to sound off on movies, music, TV, internet, and personalities. The website has all the usual opinion and social networking tools, but unlike other sites, the user opinions may be aggregated, interpreted, and shared directly with key decision makers in the entertainment industry. Put another way, we have every intention of making sure Hey! Nielsen users are heard,” wrote Steve Ciabattoni, a Hey! Nielsen representative.

I received an invitation to test out Hey Nielsen! Beta. So I entered my e-mail and activated my account. Here’s what I like and dislike:

There are 5 tabs surrounding the internal pages of Hey Nielsen. The first tab is Opinions where users can decide how much they agree with submitted videos and articles.  Users can sort the articles based on Featured, Popular, and Recent.  Users can also comment on each article.  Another useful feature under Opinions is to be able to filter articles based on the form of media involved.  For example, when I clicked on TV, the Ugly Betty article showed up at the top since it is a TV show.

Under the Rankings tab, the most discussed TV, Movies, Music, Personalities, and Internet sites appear in the top.  As you can tell:  Jericho, Heroes, and Ugly Betty are the most discussed TV shows.  Other items that made it in the top includes YouTube, Facebook, and The Office TV show all tying for 9th place.  Rank determination is also determined using data from

Under the Calendar tab, there will be an AJAX calendar where TV shows will be listed based on the times that they play.  Next to the TV show listing, there will be data aggregated from within Hey! Nielsen such as member commentary, popular opinions, and a list of how many other members like the show.

Under the Member section, users can search for other members and see what other members are online.

Lastly, the Hey! Nielsen social network where users can display their Opinions:

Overall Thoughts:
What I like about Hey! Nielsen is that their social network is complementary to its overall business model: collecting market research.  I also like how people from different backgrounds are encouraged to engage in different opinions about various forms of media.

What I don’t like about Hey! Nielsen is that the idea of social communities and collecting opinions seems a little bit played out.  Rather than having a social network that focuses on what users think about other social networks, Hey! Nielsen should setup a system where users can talk about Facebook Applications rather than Facebook overall.  The user interface seems like it should be a little less generic too.  Hey! Nielsen’s current user interface seems to MySpace-ish and would look better if it looked more Facebook-ish.

Those are my two cents.  Don’t rule out Hey! Nielsen.  The site has enormous potential.