NEWS11 March 2014

TAM gets further reprieve on Indian TV ratings guidelines

Asia Pacific Legal News

INDIA — A stay on new TV ratings guidelines which threatened to disrupt the operations of TAM India, the country’s dominant ratings provider, has been extended to July.


Delhi’s High Court was due to rule on the guidelines, which prevent any cross-holdings of 10% or more between rating agencies and broadcasters, advertisers or advertising agencies, on 6 March. This hearing has now been adjourned until summer.

TAM India is a joint venture between Nielsen and Kantar – but Kantar’s parent company WPP also owns a substantial number of advertising firms. As such, TAM India falls foul of the guidelines in their current form, and would be prevented from publishing ratings figures as a result.

The original stay was ordered in February, at which point the High Court directed TAM to publish a list of affiliated advertising companies, and the “significant” clients of those companies, on its website within two weeks.

The disputed TV ratings guidelines were adopted by the government in January. They set a number of rules for companies wishing to measure TV audiences – including a minimum sample size of 20,000 homes, rising by 10,000 each year until the panel reaches 50,000 homes.

Research companies wishing to carry out TV ratings work also have to register with the Indian Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB).