Meter Panel

TV and Radio Meter Panelists

This is your chance to count in the TV and Radio Ratings

Have you ever wondered how television stations find out who's watching their programs or how radio stations find out who's listening? In Canada, they rely on BBM to provide them with Radio and TV ratings. And we use special electronic meters, called PPM, installed in a carefully selected panel of homes. We invite homes to become members of our TV and Radio ratings panel.

BBM has been reporting the "ratings" for over 50 years.  But we can only report the ratings with your help. We need your input to help us tell TV and Radio stations what programs you watch. Your participation is very important in helping TV and Radio stations decide what programs to air, as well as what programs to cancel.  This is truly your opportunity to be heard!

Here are some frequently asked questions that we hope will help in answering any of your concerns. If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to contact us by calling 514-905-0800 or toll-free at 1-866-226-7655, or email us at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Why me?

We recently called you to take part in a television viewing survey.  Based on the information you gave, you were chosen to represent similar households in your area.  Your participation is very important and will help us maintain a high quality TV and Radio ratings service in Canada!

What is a panel?

A panel is a group of households that have been randomly selected to represent an entire community. The ratings are collected by measuring the television viewing and the radio listening of all the people in the panel.

How do I join?

All you have to do is carry the electronic meter called the PPM around with you at all times. The meter will not harm your equipment; it simply detects which TV or Radio stations you tune to.

Why should I?

This is your chance to influence Canadian television and radio by counting in the ratings.  Also, because we value your contribution, your home will receive a cash payment when the PPM equipment is installed. Then, for each month the PPM equipment is in your home, each panelist will receive a monthly cash reward and will be eligible to win additional monthly prizes.

How does the PPM work?

A PPM is provided to each person in your home. It comes along with a re-charger and a modem. Each member of your home is asked to wear (carry) the PPM around all day by simply attaching it to clothing or carry it in your pocket. The PPM is about the size of a pager. The PPM will pick up what you listen to on the Radio and what you watch on television. It automatically identifies the TV and Radio stations by picking up a special ‘encoded' signal sent on the air by each station. These signals are silent to human ear. The PPM only picks up the hidden signals and won't hear or record any of your conversations or any other sound.

Your PPM has a green light on the side to show you it is working. The green light is attached to a special sensor that knows if you are carrying the PPM with you. The movement sensor will also let you accumulate reward points which are turned into monthly cash rewards.

All viewing and listening information is stored in the PPM, and you are also equipped with a collector that you use each day to recharge the PPM battery and to download the data to us during the night through the modem that is also provided. The transfer of information is silent.  Your phone will not ring and the process takes only a few seconds.

Your privacy

As we told you on the phone, the information you provide is confidential.  We combine your TV viewing, your Radio listening and household information with that of other panel members to produce ratings about groups of people only, not individuals.  We never disclose names, addresses or phone numbers of panel members.

We promise:

  • You can leave the panel anytime you want.
  • The meter will not harm your TV or Radio equipment.
  • Participation is confidential. Names, addresses and phone numbers of panel members are protected and will never be given out.
  • We will pay you for being in the panel.
  • We will give you a free number to call if you have any questions or problems.
  • We will never try to sell you anything.

What is BBM?

BBM is a not-for-profit Canadian media research co-operative, which has been in operation since 1944.  Canadian broadcasters, advertising agencies and advertisers are members of our organization.  We conduct research for our members and provide them with information on the number of people who watch various television and radio programs ("The Ratings").