Tata Sky favours multiple agencies for TV audience measurement

Tata Sky & GTPL Hathway want a member representing DPO/DTH/OTT platform in BARC shareholding body

MUMBAI: Tata Sky, one of the leading DTH operators in India has suggested Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) that there should be multiple rating agencies. The competition will bring in new technologies and new methods in analysis.

“Yes, multiple rating agencies need to be promoted. Competition will  bring in new technologies, new research methodologies, new methods in analysis, new and better ways to ensure better data quality,” Tata Sky has said in its submission to a consultation paper on TV audience measurement floated by TRAI.

On the contrary, GTPL Hathway believes that there is no need for competition in the television rating services to ensure transparency and accuracy.

“If more television ratings agencies are allowed to compete then the sample size will reduce and might even get scattered demographically. Therefore to ensure transparency and accuracy, there is no need for competition in the television rating services,” GTPL Hathway stated.

The DTH player also commented that BARC India is not transparent regarding sharing the methodology and the representation of the panel home amongst the various platform types.

Both Tata Sky and GTPL Hathway suggested that the BARC shareholding body should also include members representing the DPO/DTH/OTT platform body.

To address the issue of panel tampering/infiltration, GTPL Hathway suggested to increase the sample size of the panel household significantly, which will reduce the impact of tampering on overall TV ratings, which in turn will reduce the temptation to tamper with the panel homes.

Tata Sky argues that there is an under representation of DTH customers amongst the existing panel homes and BARC has taken no steps to publish a list for transparency. The representation of HD homes also needs correction.

On the question whether BARC India should be permitted to provide raw level data to broadcasters, the MSO said, “We agree with TRAI’s view that release of raw data to broadcasters may potentially compromise on secrecy of households and sanctity of the data. The proposition that availability of raw data would help in giving the broadcaster sharper insights into viewership behavior is not sufficient to take such a huge security risk. There are other ways of sharper insights into viewership behavior such as AI."

"Provisioning of raw level data to broadcasters will definitely contravene the policy guidelines for television rating agencies prescribed by MIB. The accreditation system mentioned by MIB requires secrecy of panel households, while release of raw data to broadcasters may potentially compromise secrecy of households", GTPL Hathway stated.

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