NDTV Sues Nielsen over TV Programme Rating,Manipulation.
Lesser men like you and I have been, though hearing the sound bites from Statistic honchos(Statistics normally conceals more than it reveals like a Bikini), have this question nagging at the back of our minds.
How come these guys , for a country as big as India, seem to rate viewer ship with lots of Data, calling prime time,Super Time, Super A etc, with none of us knowing how they do it?
Though they said that thy have some gadget ifs fixed at households and that it reveals details of Channels you have surfed with time.
But to the best of my knowledge ,I have never seen a Gadget in any of the homes nor have I know of any one knowing this much detail, the least!
If these surveys are extensive, well.. it is the best kept Secret!
Imagine Television Channels and Advertisers investing Crores of Rupees for Prime Time on such findings.
Well, all good things must end one day.
It transpires that for a country of the size of India with….
“Television in India is a huge industry which has thousands of programmes in many languages. The small screen has produced numerous celebrities, some even attaining national fame. TV soaps are extremely popular. Approximately half of all Indian households own a television. As of 2010, the country has a collection of free and subscription services over a variety of distribution media, through which there are over 515 channels of which 150 arepay channels. According to Pioneer Investcorp, the Indian cable industry is worth 270 billion (US$4.89 billion) and is the third largest in the world aftertelevision in the People’s Republic of China and television in the United States. The number of TV homes in India grew from 120 million in 2007 to 148 million in 2011. Cable reaches 94 million homes with 88 million analog connections and 6 million digital ones, while DTH has commanded 41 million subscribers.“
has a sampling of 8160 boxes, with 50-60 boxes per Target Group!
The flip-side of it is that when there was a Fire accident in Maharashtra Secretariat, Mantralaya, the Rating showed that there was no viewer ship(Zero viewer ship) from the age group ’25 Years Male’ in Mumbai where the fire was raging!
Another issue raised by NDTV is that the Nielsen people manipulated the rating by tampering the Boxes(at last there were some boxes!)
“On April 3, 2012, a meeting was held between the representatives of NDTV, namely, Rahul Sood, Sidharth Barhate and Anand Mohan Jha, and two field staff employees of TAM (one provided his first name, while the other did not disclose his name) at Ramada Plaza Hotel, Juhu, Mumbai. The TAM employees revealed that they were employed in Mumbai to look after, and collect data from, TAM meters.
They stated they were willing to manipulate TAM ratings in Mumbai. They showed their identity cards and represented themselves as TAM employees. They also showed TAM manuals to the representatives of NDTV and explained how the meters operate, and the number of meters /areas that they looked after. They were also aware of NDTV’s ratings. They had been in touch with NDTV representative as mentioned above, therefore, during the meeting they insisted upon NDTV’s permission to activate the system at the earliest so that NDTV could see prompt results of high TRPs as promised by these persons. They claimed to have effected manipulations in the past for other channels and were willing provide the same “services” for “any” channel that was ready to pay the demanded consideration (bribe). They were confident that they could triple channel ratings of NDTV in Mumbai over a period of two to three weeks in the required target group. They stated they had direct access to homes and visited those homes periodically (at least 3 to 4 times a week) and were in a position to easily influence what the households watched/viewed. They said by paying a bribe of $250 to $500 per household per month, the TAM households could be made to watch only those channels which they insisted upon…”
What is NBA doing except advertising in TV channels by way of scroll mesaages’If you have a complaint blah, blah?
May be it is not the channels that are to be complained against.
It was the complaint of the Channels.
So they keep quiet.
Let’s see how far this joke goes.
As for as I am concerned it will be show as usual and all the guys will co-exist .
NDTV filed a case against The Nielsen Co. in a New York court for “manipulating television viewership data in favour of channels that were willing to offer bribes to its officials,” according to a news report filed by The Hollywood Reporter late last week.
NDTV is seeking “compensatory and punitive damages” from the Nielsen group, Kantar group, TAM Media Research Pvt. Ltd and a host of Nielsen directors including its global chief executive David Calhoun for causing financial loss and loss of reputation and brand value by releasing incorrect viewership data, according to the petition, a copy of which is available withMint.
TAM is a joint venture between Nielsen and Kantar (the market research arm of London-based advertising and public relations firm WPP Plc) in India and was launched in 1998 to provide television viewership data.
“Low ratings for NDTV news channels have also led to public claims by other news channels of being the number 1 (one) channel,” the broadcaster said in its petition. “This loss of hard-earned reputation and goodwill along with the damage to the profitability of NDTV as a result of low advertising revenues has in turn severely damaged the brand value of NDTV.”
The broadcaster is demanding $810 million (Rs.4,520 crore) for fraud and $580 million for negligence, in addition to other claims, according to the petition.
It’s claiming the damages for “loss of advertising revenues, increased carriage costs, loss of reputation, loss of goodwill, loss of stock value, and loss of other revenues,” the petition added.
A TAM Media spokesperson declined to make a statement, saying the company “doesn’t comment on any litigation.” NDTV officials said they could not comment as the matter is in court.
According to the petition, after NDTV exposed rampant corruption and security breaches in TAM data to top officials of the Nielsen group and Kantar, it requested them to stop releasing data until the issues were resolved. But despite promises of remedial measures, the companies did not take corrective action and continued to publish “data corrupted by lack of security and lack of adequate sample size,” it said.
Both NDTV and the News Broadcasters Association had requested TAM to increase the sample size to 30,000 and strengthen security measures.
TAM’s website states that it “has the largest sample in the world comprising 36,000 individuals from across 165 cities and towns covering 8,150 TV homes from class I towns (all towns and cities with a population of more than 100,000) and semi-rural towns (less than 100,000 population) from the state of Maharashtra.”
The TAM system consists of boxes which are installed in a few homes, which then give data on channels watched, their periodicity, etc — all of which are key inputs for advertisers, which is the lifeblood of TV news channels, especially since they get only one fifth of the subscription revenue they are entitled to from cable operators.
Industry sources cite numerous instances to point out the gross misrepresentation of the TAM system. The latest instance is this year’s Week 25 TAM viewership data of Mumbai showing “zero viewership” among young males who come from an affluent background.
In technical jargon, this segment would be called “male 25 years plus age group (analog) for target group AB” for June 21, the day the Maharashtra Mantralaya caught fire. ” It is impossible that this could happen, given the huge audience interest in the story which was followed through the day as lead. Yet the TAM data showed that no one from the city in the Males 25+ AB audience among the analogue homes had tuned into any of the English news channels. This is clearly an indicator of the kind of homes where TAM meters are installed and gross misrepresentation of English news channel viewers in the TAM panel,” a broadcaster said. Industry heads also say that there is no third party audit in the measurement system.
Sources explained that in any news channel, even after thousands of interviews in a small city for an exit poll, the final results are different and that too for a considered decision where the future of a nation is being decided. “For a decision of which channel to watch we can well imagine how just 50-60 boxes per target group per city are telling you what your consumers are watching,” a media head said. The NDTV plaint too makes the point that the small sample size meant that “bribing and manipulating only a select number of homes” could cause significant change in data.