Media Monday: Can Govt break the TRP monopoly?


It’s finally happening, after looking into the concerns of Advertisers and Broadcasters, the IBF (Indian Broadcasting Foundation) is finally on its way to establish BARC (Broadcast Audience Research Council) in an effort to break the monopoly enjoyed by TAM and aMap.

TRP ratings

Since long it has become a matter of concern for various Advertisers and Broadcasters the way TRPs rule this hot industry. The main concern is the authenticity of the data which comes from merely 10,000 odd urban homes where TAM/aMAP meters are installed. Which is miniscule number when compared to the 110 Million TV homes in India. Moreover these meters don’t cover the 40 Million odd village homes.

But this effort from Govt is taking too long to come into effect. It was way back in 2007 when Govt announced the formation of BARC, but nothing significant happened since then. Even now the formation of BARC is facing some serious troubles. In a very recent news it has been learnt that Prasar Bharati is threatening to withdraw from the IBF. Their concern is- being the only public broadcaster, they should have a permanent member on the BARC board.

It looks like some serious politics is behind this so called neutral platform formation. Even in 3 years Govt is yet to decide who to put on board? Sounds very surprising, and with the weights behind those powerful TRP aggregators, it becomes truly suspicious.

What do you think? Are there any other solutions to break this monopoly?

  1. Pradeep says

    Nice article.. there is no harm in having another independent organization who could compile these data more effectively.

  2. Sunny Talreja says

    Nice article.
    BTW, can’t the broadcasters and advertisers get appropriate data from DTH providers. There are so many of them like Tata sky, Dish, Videocon, Sun, Airtel, Big etc. Each is having a strong base and data can be easily cross validated with each other.

    1. rabi gupta says

      Hi Sunny,

      It’s actually not that simple as it seems. Transporting data over satellite in real time is a big task, and if you want to save that data in your DTH boxes then tell me how many people use Tata Sky+ or Airtel with DVR. I heard that Tata Sky is actually doing this on a very small scale, as the costs involved in this are very high. Moreover, its a time of tough competition and no one wants to experiment much from business POV.

  3. Neelu Saraswat says

    Good Article….

    1. rabi gupta says

      Thanks Neelu!

  4. Viral says

    Hello Rabi,

    Nice article! Certainly, most of the Media researches coming up since quite some while are dominated by TAM. And, we need an alternative organization or regulatory entity that comes out with independent figures for the rleated media findings.

    Not that TAM findings could be susceptible or erroneous, but an additional reserach finding involved in the same space of reasearches could provide for a fool-proof system of data to fall or rely upon. And that no better organization than a state-owned one, for this.

    1. rabi gupta says

      Rightly said Viral, thanks.

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