SXSW Interactive 2016

Archimedes on a Fault Line

The math that we use to describe and evaluate media is bad. More than bad, wrong. Our most prized key metrics are built on mathematically invalid operations. Trillions of dollars are spent each year, supported by math that wouldn’t pass a 6th grade arithmetic class. How did this happen? What can we do to evolve? Many people think Digital is the answer, but is the math we use there really any different? Not really, much of what we use in this new world was lifted from direct channels like DRTV and Direct Mail. We will never be able to truly activate on Analytics and Big Data until we get the fundamentals right.

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  1. What is wrong with the way we currently measure media?
  2. Is Digital data as sophisticated as we think?
  3. How can we move towards a more mathematically valid view?


  • Jonathan Hart, VP/Decision Sciences, GSD&M


Melanie Mahaffey, VP/Communications, GSD&M

Meta Information:

  • Tags: math, media, measurement
  • Event: Interactive
  • Format: Solo
  • Track: Branding and Marketing
  • Track 2
  • Level: Intermediate
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