BARC India to resume publishing of news channel ratings from March 17

BARC India will release individual news channel data with effect from Thursday, March 17 2022.

Welcoming the Ministry of I&B’s directive to resume the release of data for individual news channels, BARC said in a release that the data will be released as per the Augmented Data Reporting Standards for News and Special Interest genres.

BARC India is currently working towards ensuring the seamless release of individual news channel data and intends to commence release with effect from our reporting Week 10, 2022. As per our reporting cycle, this data will be released to the market on Thursday, 17th March 2022. We have communicated the same to our clients and stakeholders.

The Augmented Standards entail the reporting of audience estimates for News and Special Interest genre channels on a 4-week rolling average basis, which would be released regularly every week along with the estimates for all other channels. All viewership data will be published on the same YUMI platform that all our subscribers use.

In the weeks leading up to the resumption of news channels ratings, BARC India will be reaching out to its constituents to sufficiently inform and educate them about the details of the Augmented Data Reporting Standards.

With the active support of the Technical Committee members, all our stakeholders and industry experts, we believe we have a statistically sound and effective solution which helps augment the robustness of the data and reporting, which we had set out to do. This would be another significant step taken by BARC India to ensure a strong currency for advertisers and media organisations.

The Augmented Standards

It was on October 15 2020 that BARC India temporarily paused the reporting of individual channel audience estimates for all news channels. The BARC India Board had proposed that its Technical Committee (TechComm) review and augment the existing standards of measuring and reporting the data of news and special interest genres, to address their statistical variability and thereby improve their robustness.

Subsequently, the TechComm worked actively with its larger group, and held consultative meetings with media experts and domain specialists as well as the BARC Measurement Science team, in evolving the way forward. Specifically, the BARC TechComm sought to address the issues of sensitivity to high variability and bounce in the audience estimates of News and Special Interest Genre channels owing to their low tuned sample and usage of highly targeted target groups (TGs). Multiple options were explored, and due consideration was given to suggestions from the industry participants and stakeholders.

After an extensive evaluation process, and a series of consultations with stakeholder representatives on the TechComm, BARC India arrived at the Augmented Data Reporting Standards for the news and special interest genres, which it claims as a statistically sound and effective solution.
The Augmented Standards involve the reporting of audience estimates for these genres on a four-week rolling average. Audience estimates for these genres would be released regularly every week along with the estimates for all other channels, but as a 4-week rolling average. Furthermore, all viewership data will be published on the same YUMI platform that all our subscribers use.

These Augmented Data Reporting Standards have been rigorously tested over several months and are now industry-ready for rollout to subscribers, said Aaditya Pathak, Head – Client Partnership & Revenue Function, at BARC India.
In addition to the weekly currency audience estimates that all channels receive, BARC India will also provide News and Special Interest genre Broadcasters with the following:

a) Unrolled audience estimates only for their own channel(s) in a separate YUMI database. For the sake of clarification – Channel X would receive individual weekly estimates ONLY for that channel, and not of any others. Of course, where broadcast networks have more than one channel, they will receive the unrolled estimates for each of their channels. The audience estimates in this database will be non-transactional and only for internal analysis purposes. Channels shall not use this data in the public domain. These unrolled audience estimates will only be released to the respective channels 4 weeks after the first rolled augmented data release date.

b) 12 “Customised Events Report” – CERs (defined as reporting of an event in a single day) in a financial year, with 3 non-transferable CERs issued per quarter, to each channel, based on their specific request. These reports would be based on unrolled data for “events” such as special news events, premiere shows, etc. Broadcasters can use the CERs for the purpose of socializing/marketing communications, sharing with trade/media. CERs will be made available from Week 14 data release.
Past data

Furthermore, the past rolled data will be released as per the Ministry of I&B’s guidelines which requires the release only of the previous 13 weeks data prior to the week of resumption of data under the Augmented Data Reporting Standards, viz., 4-week rolling average basis.
However, this past rolled data will not be made available for those channels that choose to opt-out of receiving this data.

i. Only 4-week rolling average data will be provided to channels for these past 13 weeks. No unrolled data will be provided.

ii. For the channels that opt-out, that is request that their past 13-weeks data not to published, their individual channel level data will not be available in YUMI, and hence the same will not be available to any subscriber including themselves.

iii. Data for all the channels that “opt-out” would be clubbed under the ‘Other Channels’ category, in order to ensure that estimates for Total TV or Total News remain unchanged from previously released data.

iv. For all other remaining channels, that is, those who have chosen not to opt-out, their audience estimates (of the above mentioned past 13-week period) will be automatically published, and the data would be available to all subscribers of YUMI.
The opt-out choice for the past 13 weeks data is a one-time choice that cannot be changed thereafter. Once the data is published (or not), as per the choice of the broadcaster, BARC will not be in a position to change the opt-out status at a later date.
Subscribers are also requested to note that their decision to opt-out needs to be conveyed to BARC India, in writing, no later than Thursday 17th February 2022.

Those subscribers who choose to opt-out and not have their past data released, will also need to pay their subscription fees for the period from Week 40, 2020.

The Augmented Data Reporting Standards for News and Special Interest genre channels have been carefully thought through, putting industry needs at the heart of the revised methodology while maintaining statistical integrity. The solution has been adequately tested and is now ready to be adopted into BARC’s measurement system.


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