August 01, 2012

NDTV says TV ratings manipulated

News broadcaster NDTV has sued the country’s only television audience measurement company TAM India — and its global parent firms Nielsen and Kantar — for over a billion dollars in the Supreme Court of New York, accusing TAM of manipulating ratings in return for bribes to its officials.

While there have been allegations of manipulation of TAM’s viewership data among broadcasters for years, NDTV has finally blown the whistle with its July 25 lawsuit, seeking damages of at least $810 million for its losses over the last eight years due to TAM’s allegedly fraudulent actions. Accusing Nielsen and Kantar of deliberately ignoring the situation even after having been presented with evidence — detailed in the 194-page lawsuit — NDTV is also seeking damages of $580 million for losses due to negligence over the last three years.

On Tuesday, NDTV reported a net loss of Rs. 26.09 crore for the quarter ended June 30, 2012, significantly higher than the Rs. 17.98 crore loss reported during the quarter ended June 30, 2011. Both TAM India and NDTV refused to comment.

TAM installs “PeopleMeters” in over 8,000 sample homes to monitor viewership patterns, giving critical input to corporate decisions on the advertising purchases that fund and sustain the broadcast industry. In its lawsuit, NDTV claims that the small sample size and low turnover have given rise to rampant corruption, with touts willing to “fix” ratings by influencing sample homes. One so-called “consultant” told NDTV and Nielsen and Kantar officials in a January 2012 meeting how the list of PeopleMeter homes — supposed to be secret — was leaked in Bangalore. He explained how he was able to successfully bribe viewers in sample homes, as well as TAM staff, and finally get a PeopleMeter installed at his own residence.

In April 2012, two Mumbai field staff of TAM met NDTV representatives and offered to manipulate the channels ratings, claiming 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.”

After a thorough investigation, Kantar and Nielsen found the consultant’s information to be correct and “very credible.” However, they failed to take any action, and continued to release tainted TV rating data every week.

SOURCE: The Hindu

Copyright © 2012 - ScrutinyByKHimaanshu


  1. TRP has dipped recently. TRPs are counted only for India. If they would consider the number of hits on Youtube or the viewers in UK, US, France, Mauritius, Australia, South Africa, Pakistan, Canada and other countries, IPKKND wud have been @ top. IT IS THE MOST ACCLAIMED SHOW WORLDWIDE with a huge fan following. These can B determined from different social networks.

    There r power cuts from 8-9pm in many regions in India. But how can Balika Vadhu, EHMMBH gain TRPs? It's so as some people r not open- minded or extrovert. They r very conservative or orthodox @ times. They cannot accept the facts like Contract marriage, romance on screen in front of Children. Many have even said zat they prefer to watch it online because of their parents and now we r thinking about consumption, remember the hype after intimate scenes in BALH? This was aired late but IPKKND is @ 8. Even Barun and Sanaya said they have their reservation for intimate scenes. THEY NEED TO ACCEPT THAT THESE ARE COMMON NOWADAYS. It's real.

    For many, shows must have drama, like two children being separated @ birth like in Parichay, Actors getting married to other ladies, two or three wives like Ram married to Ayesha in BALH, Jagya to Gauri in Balika Vadhu, Pradeep- Anushka affair in Kya Hua Teraa Vada, famous Tears, death of people like in Balika Vadhu, boring tracks, useless storylines like in SNS, no strong story like Bhabhima, Dadaji remarriage in YRKKH, social messages like in MKAP, Balika Vadhu, DABH, emotional atyachar like in SMK, dragging melodrama like in Uttaran, soutens, saazish, Leaps like in Pavitra Rishta, BALH, Parichay, son's come back in villainous roles like in Pavitra Rishta and how the family will help to mend his ways. Old wines in new bottles, meaning the Saas- Bahu drama like in Kairee, SNS, DABH, YRKKH. Except the social message parts, some do not even realise zat the rest of the drama is destroying the minds of many and which r irrational. It's pathetic zat only these kind of shows get TRPs.

    Many say IPKKND has gone off-track does not have strong story which is false. It's still the Love- Hate relationship. The story is pretty going good with cute, funny scenes and romance, brother-sister relationship as it suits its title. It is due to zis difference from usual shows Y they have not get a name for this kind of Pyaar.

    From the promos of DABH, it was said what we'll call a husband taking care of the wife- Saccha Jeevan Saathi or Jodu Ka Gulam. But it's rather the wife who's taking care of the husband here and on top of that the saas bahu drama. The actress is not yet IPS, almost a year since its start. We all know zat Suraj will win the competition but we r rather having Master Chef season 3 going on, dragging the strory.

    JUST KEEP WATCHING ISS PYAAR KO KYA NAAM DOON? They need ur support to have a long run. I'm sure true fans would agree wiz me. PLEASE SEE THE POSITIVE SIDE OF THINGS, just don't make issues of every details. It is a new concept and an unusual love story.

    IPKKND is the best with our best Jodi

  2. IPKKND is the best show and arshi is the best jodi
    PLz include online viewers and international viewers in trp

  3. gurti rokzzzzzzzz

  4. for those who say dis serial is d best or was d best.....whr wer d same ppl wen d same show was amongst top 10...dat time trps wer reliable...n nw dat d show is nt doing well trps r nt reliable....
    d article is nt abt which show is d best...its abt hw d trps can b manipulated by giving bribe....n its nt a full-proof system....dats an area which needs attention....sum of d top shows dat feature in d list r nt evn watched by d maximum.....d pulse rate of an audience cannot b measured by a mere 8000 viewers...d system needs 2 b redesigned....

  5. Honestly speaking I had been wondering why the trp ratings always remained so stagnant reguarding some shows,specially those crappy saas bahu serials with a stereo typical family politics ,evil women garnered with an illogical amount of heavy jewelery,an irritating bride weeping large amounts of glycerine all day alongside an annoying ancient "18th century style " love story played in the same old worn out sequence of events
    But then again thats just my opinion .Nowaydays there are many new shows which depict real modern India,its youth with new concepts,stories and etc .Yet these shows (other than IPKKND and BV) have no recognition in the industry.
    Anyways I would really hope that the system is redesigned as it not only has an effect on the veiwers but the cast and crew as well .

  6. Maaneet ,geet and gurti for life !!

  7. mann ki awaz prathigya is a good show, it have some social values..............

  8. i think IPK sucks, no wonder they are seeing this loss, why are they blaming TRPs now??? the TRPs where very gud when the show started. The only reason it is Hit its because its in star-plus.many people don't even know its FULL COPY OF GEET. every one watch starplus because its the same old saas-bahu track in every damn show. first the copied GEET, then the copied RANG BADALTI ODHNI(6 months marrige track) and know m actually waiting to see who are they going to copy this time.


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