The Lincoln-Hastings-Kearney DMA

A DMA is a "Designated Market Area" as defined by Nielson Media Research, Inc's geographic market design based on measurable viewing patters of television markets. Every county in the country is assigned exclusively to one particular Designated Market Area.

The Lincoln-Hastings-Kearney DMA in Nebraska is considered by many to be the most unique in the U.S. It contains four major cities that are separated by 130 miles. Most DMAs in the U.S. have only one major metro area and all of the television stations in the market cover that metro area.

Nielsen regards the four cities in Lincoln-Hastings-Kearney as two separate metro areas within the same DMA. Metro 1 is defined as Lancaster County, with Lincoln, Nebraska being the city of origin for the television stations. Metro 2 is made up of Adams, Hall and Buffalo counties and contains the cities of Grand Island, Hastings and Kearney, Nebraska.

The Lincoln-Hastings-Kearney DMA is unique because television and radio stations serving one metro area do not cover the other. In fact, the extreme western end and northern portion of the DMA is served by neither Metro where radio is concerned. These areas are served by either translators or satellite stations of some of the Metro 2 television stations. Perhaps some lobbying created an extreme case of "gerrymandering" to increase television market ranking?

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