The need for speeding up the existence of a transparent television
audience system under the aegis of the broadcasters and the
advertising and media agencies is gaining ground after NDTV's
lawsuit has made allegations against TAM Media, the single
TV ratings measurement currency in India.
(Broadcast Audience Research Council) needs to probably be
expedited. It will not be a supervisory but a governing body.
The clients, the broadcasters and the agencies will be represented
in that," said Aegis Media CEO South East Asia Ashish
shareholding of BARC was announced in March 2012 with the
Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) holding 60 per cent equity
and the balance 40 per cent being equally shared by the Indian
Society of Advertisers (ISA) and Advertising Agencies Association
of India (AAAI). But it has still to become operational and
the draft incorporating the memorandum of agreement (MOA)
and the Articles of Association (AoA) finally approved and
industry professionals from the advertising and media agencies
said that a body overseeing TAM was the need of the hour.
senior official from a leading agency emphasised the need
for a body like BARC as TAM has become akin to the Holy Grail
or Bible when it comes to TV ratings. I have always
wondered how can you base your decisions on a single ratings
agency that is so powerful to decide the buying of over Rs
110 billion of television advertising spend. I have found
the peoplemeters and the sample size inadequate and there
have been allegations of tampering. It defies rationale under
these circumstances if we are not to speed up BARC.
Another top official from a different agency pointed out that
the best way is to review data simultaneously as it gets thrown
up so that errors can be kept in check or rectified timely.
The anomalies can, thus, be investigated promptly. If there
is any mistake, genuine or of malicious intent, it can be
set right, he remarked.
agencies do not depend entirely on TAM when they do their
buying plans for their clients. We also look at other
factors and along with our internal research and some element
of gut feel we decide on how we can best get to the target
audience of the brand. Advertisers and media agencies dont
trust the TAM data blindly before putting monies behind the
channel," a media professional said.
Is monopoly of a single ratings currency bad? Bhasin does
not think monopoly is the issue. "The issue is if somebody
is not doing the job properly or deliberately doing it wrong.
That is what has to be monitored and controlled, he
Another senior media executive, however, disagrees. According
to him, this may be a good time for other research agencies
to offer services compatible to TAM and provide the industry
with an alternative.
though, feels that it is a better option to have the industrys
resources pooled in one place and a monitoring body structured.
of the media executives agree on one thing: to make BARC operational
with much thought and detailing.