MIB steps into TV ratings ecosystem; sets up committee led by Prasar Bharti CEO
The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has constituted a committee to review the guidelines on television rating agencies in India that the Ministry had notified in 2014.
The present guidelines issued by MIB on TV rating agencies in India were notified after detailed deliberations by the Parliamentary Committee, Committee on Television Rating Points (TRP) constituted by the MIB and recommendations of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), etc.
Currently, BARC India, a joint industry body, handles television ratings in the country. There has been some recent controversy regarding manipulation of TRPs by some people. On earlier occasions, too, instances of TRP manipulation had come to light. BARC India has suspended the declaration of ratings of news channels for a period of 8-12 months following the recent controversy. There have also been several calls from various factions on a complete overhaul of the TV rating ecosystem in India.
According to the MIB notification, “It has been found, based on the operation of the guidelines for a few years, that there is need to have a fresh look on the guidelines, particularly keeping in view the recent recommendations of TRAI, technological advancements/ interventions to address the system and further strengthening of the procedures for a credible and transparent rating system.”
The newly set up committee will study different aspects of the TV rating system in India as they have evolved over a period of time. The committee will also carry out an appraisal of the existing system; examine TRAI’s recommendations notified from time to time, overall industry scenario and addressing the needs of the stakeholders and make recommendations for robust, transparent and accountable rating system through changes, if any, in the existing guidelines.
The Committee members include:
Shashi S Vempati, CEO, Prasar Bharti – Chairman
Dr Shalabh, Professor of Statistics, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, IIT Kanpur
Dr Rajkumar Upadhyay, Executive Director, C-DOT
Professor Pulak Ghosh, Decision Sciences, Centre for Public Policy (CPP)
The committee can invite any expert as a special invitee.
The Terms of Reference for the committee include:
- Study past recommendations made by various forums on the subject of television rating systems in India and matter incidental thereto;
- Study recent recommendations of Telecom Regulatory Authority on the subject;
- Suggest steps for enhancing competition in the sector;
- Review of the presently notified guidelines to see if the intended purpose(s) of issuing the guidelines have stood the test of time and has met needs of various stakeholders involve The lacunae, if any, shall be specially addressed by the Committee;
- Any issues related or incidental to the subject;
- To make recommendations on way forward for robust, transparent and accountable rating system in India; and
- Any other related issues assigned by MIB from time to time.
The Committee will submit its report to the Minister for Information & Broadcasting within two months.