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Congressmen: If the Ratings System Ain't Broke...

Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.) and Jesse Jackson Jr. (D- Ill.) have urged their colleagues, in a memo, not to regulate a TV ratings system that isn't broken.

The joint letter from the congressmen was written in response to the "Don't Count Us Out" group who criticized how the Nielsen local people meters (LPMs) measure viewing habits of minority communities to determine program content.

The letter stated that the LPM needs to be tweaked, but the issues "should appropriately be debated in the boardroom and not in the halls of Congress."

Also, the letter praised the Media Rating Council (MRC) for its efforts in monitoring the research that Nielsen and other media ratings organizations provide and called the possibility of a federal regulation, a "government intrusion into the private sector."

LPMs have been used in the United States since 1987 but whether they accurately measure the viewing habits of minority groups has been up for debate since the their initial launch.