From A for AGF Videoforschung to Z for zapping, the most important technical terms in video research are explained here.

The p-value is the proportion that a person has seen of an element, such as a programme/commercial break/time interval. It is defined as the quotient of PIN and duration of the element.

The p-value method includes the individual viewing participation/viewing duration of persons in an analysis element. Each person is counted with the share corresponding to their viewing duration in relation to the length of the analysis element (= p-value).

PAL is an acronym that stands for Phase Alternating Line. It refers to a method for the transmission of color pictures in analog television. It is often equated with the TV standard under which 25 frames per second are transmitted with approximately 400,000 pixels per frame divided into 625 lines.

The panelists of the Desktop Panel and Mobile Panel act as donors whose streaming usage is transferred to the recipients in the TV Panel. Due to the considerably higher number of cases of streaming users in the Desktop Panel and Mobile Panel compared to the TV Panel, the TV Panel is “boosted” for the fusion: Each TV Panelist is technically increased by a factor of approximately nine. To ensure that the TV reach values remain the same, the weight of the boosted panelists is divided by nine in compensation.

Panel fluctuation refers to the replacement of persons or households resulting from entries to and exits from the AGF panel. A distinction is made between “natural “ panel fluctuation in which no interventions are made to the entries or exits of panel members and “artificial” panel fluctuation which is deliberately employed to achieve a replacement of panel households. Household participation in the AGF panel is not limited in time; artificial panel fluctuation takes place only in special cases.

Participation weighting is needed for the calculation of longitudinal analyses such as the cumulation and frequency analysis in which the viewing behavior of individual persons over a longer period of time is analyzed. All households and persons who have delivered data at least once are included in the analysis. The more continuous the data delivery, the higher the participation weight. Thus, households and persons who have delivered data for only a short time have less influence on the analysis results.

Pay-TV refers to fee-based television programmes that are transmitted under encryption and can only be used with permission. The programmes are offered within the framework of a subscription to a pay-TV broadcaster.

pc#tv is a former evaluation software of AGF developed by GfK Fernsehforschung that was used from 1985 to July 2009. The software covered the areas of reporting and standard analyses.

pc#tv analyse is a former evaluation software by AGF. In contrast to pc#tv, pc#tv analyse was able to carry out special analyses to examine audience growth, audience identities, audience movements and audience constellations, among other things.

The performance ascertainment process determines the perspective with which incidences of use are allocated to analysis elements when calculating performance. The TV market standard offers the product-based and recipient-based processes, while the video market standard offers the product-based and usage-based processes. Default settings are shown in a table at the end of this document.

  • Product-based evaluation: Non-linear use is attributed to the analysed TV product according to content within predefined matching periods. In TV analyses, any time-shifted (up to three days after broadcast) incidences of use are attributed to the performance of the analysis element. In TV convergence analyses, incidences of steaming use which, in the default settings, occur fourteen days before to thirteen days after the TV show is broadcast are added. The weighting is subordinate to the product broadcast day.
  • Usage-based evaluation: This process focuses on the time of use. When analysing time intervals, content units and programme brands, all of the incidences of use within the analysed period are added to the performance figures belonging to an analysis element. The decisive factor is the time of use, regardless of whether that use is linear or non-linear. In the case of broadcast-based analyses (TV, TV convergence), performance is attributed in the same way as it is in product-based evaluations (incidences of TV use +3 days, streaming uses –14/+13 days by default), but they are calculated based on the day of use with its respective daily weightings. The average weighting is the key component of usage-day-based calculation and depends on the days on which the users use the service.
  • Recipient-based evaluation: This process remains available exclusively in the TV market standard for analysing TV time intervals. Calculation is done in the same way as it is in usage-based evaluation, in that all of the  incidences of use within the analysed period are added to the performance figures belonging to an analysis element. When determining p-values and the facts dependent on them, it works with the common usage share model,  which is no longer applied in the usage-based process. This perspective is not available in the planning systems.

In the AGF reference systems, the performance ascertainment process "Konvention" (convention) is additionally available for TV and TV time interval analyses. When using this process, analyses are calculated with the defaults  valid per convention, depending on the analysis period, concerning market standard and performance ascertainment process. This also applies to cross-year analyses. In the performance ascertainment process “convention”, all calculations are executed using the panel boost. This option is not available in the planning systems.


Person log-in is a method for determining which persons in a panel household are watching TV. This is done by means of a special remote control device in which a personal button is assigned to each member of the household. The viewer can “log in” as watching television by simply pressing a button and then log out by pressing the same button again. This makes it possible to measure PIN data. Guests log in and out by pressing a separate button on the remote control. When they log in, they enter their age and sex.

Piggyback programmes refer to different programmes that are transmitted by a broadcaster on a partially used frequency of another, legally independent broadcaster.

PIN is an German abbreviation for person-specific data and includes the number of seconds a person has watched an element, e.g. a programme, a commercial break or a predefined time interval.

The PiP function of a TV set makes it possible to change to another channel displayed in a small preview picture without interrupting the first programme. Either a second AV source or a second tuner is needed to display the second picture.

Pixels refer to individual picture elements which make up a television picture. The higher the number of pixels, the sharper the television picture or the higher the resolution.

PLAN TV is an AGF evaluation software developed by DAP GmbH for the planning of advertising campaigns. This software mainly serves the purpose of the comparative assessment of campaigns and the identification of alternative plans. However, it can also be used to estimate the costs of a media plan and to perform an ex-post evaluation of plans that are already in progress. PLAN TV works on the basis of the data of the AGF Panel and makes it possible to plan by months and calendar weeks. Any month for which information on commercial breaks and prices is available can be planned. Performance values are calculated on the basis of average usage values in the past.

In the context of television, platforms refer to offerings of the fee-based pay TV programmes of platform operators and distribution companies. This term does not include the basic digital packages of cable network operators and the HD+ programmes of satellite operators.

Platform access means paid access to additional offerings of platform operators and distribution companies.
This term does not refer to the basic digital packages of cable network operators and the HD+ offerings of satellite operators

The platform study is a separate study commissioned by the AGF, which twice a year - on 01/01 and 01/07 - provides current specifications on the potential and distribution of households with access to a platform in the Federal Republic of Germany. The study is conducted by Kantar Deutschland GmbH and serves as an external specification for the structural panel control as well as for the weighting and updating of the platform households. Since 2020, the platform study has also functioned together with agma's "Potential Study" as part of the AGF external target study AGF Video Potentials.

Podcasts are regular audio broadcasts (rarely video broadcasts) that can be consumed online anywhere - e.g. on smartphones, tablets or laptops - regardless of the time of the actual broadcast.

Post-rolls are online ad spots that run after the video content. As a sub-category of linear video ads, they never run concurrently with the video content.

The potential indicates the size of a target group in the population. In the AGF Panel, the potential is calculated as the sum of the weighted number of members of a target group on which an analysis is based, in relation to the universe.

Pre-rolls are online ad spots that run before the actual video content. As a sub-category of linear video ads, they never run concurrently with the video content.

The price group determines the ad spot price in the commercial break. It is subordinated to the rate type and is a component of the eight-digit commercial break code.

Profile analysis describes the users or non-users of a programme or time interval in terms of the characteristics of the Structural Survey (e.g. socio-demographic characteristics, consumption habits or purchase intentions). It therefore provides an overview of user profiles.

A programme brand is a video aggregate that includes all videos (or in broader terms: content) with the same or similar content or that are thematically related, of serial/ frequently recurring formats under one brand umbrella and across different platforms. The programme brand can therefore be understood as the sum of all video content belonging to a video vendor’s specific offer, that is associated with a brand name.

The programme coding of AGF is a content-analytical instrument for coding all programmes of participating broadcasters. Programme coding makes it possible to conduct comparative programme category-specific analyses.

The programme log is the second-by-second account of the transmission sequence of a certain broadcaster on a broadcasting day. Among other details, it reports the beginning and end time of each broadcast programme and the duration and title of the programme. This makes it possible to assign the second-by-second measurement of usage of a specific programme or commercial break.

Publisher is the content-related designation of a video content provider. The publisher is maintained by way of the providers’ content management systems. Publisher names are harmonized by means of standardizing different spellings.

The push-button method is based on the principle of active meter measurement. It makes it possible to identify persons by way of the person-specific buttons on the remote control device of the measurement system, which are used to log in and log out of the system.