With the various formats of Television Rating Point (TRP) measurement drawing flak from the industry over the years, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has now constituted a committee to review the existing TRP system. The committee, headed by FICCI Secretary General Dr Amit Mitra, will suggest measures to put in place an effective mechanism for a transparent TRP system in the country.
The mandate of the committee is to address issues related to accuracy, accountability, transparency and objectivity in the generation of TRPs. It will also examine how misleading TRPs may not only impact broadcasters and advertisers but more importantly the viewing public. It will also take into account the recommendations of TRAI, the Report of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on IT, other judicial pronouncements and international best practices to arrive at their recommendations.
Besides Dr Mitra, the other members in the committee include Rajiv Mehrotra, Managing Trustee, PSBT; journalist Neeraja Choudhary; and DS Mathur, retired Secretary to GOI, among others.
The Committee will submit its report within three months from the date of its first meeting.
A statement issued by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry says that some of the key issues expected to be examined include; the viability of the TRP system in portraying the demographic profile of the viewership in the context of viewing habits and sample size and coverage area including rural segments of the country and regions such as J&K and North-east. The Committee shall also look into viewership of all distribution platforms including Terrestrial, Cable, DTH & IPTV.
Apart from these issues, the Committee will examine whether an industry-led body like BARC, as recommended by TRAI, is the most appropriate mechanism to create TRPs without the existing deficiencies. One of the issues proposed to be studied in the feasibility of setting up, as an alternative, an institutional mechanism through legislation to either generate TRP ratings directly or work as an accreditation/ standardisation body while leaving the work of generation of TRPs to private players.