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How often do we pause and ponder about industry issues that have a bearing beyond just our rigmaroles? Share insights that can further the common understanding? Or, at the very least, point at things that need to be set right. View Point - an exchange4media platform, will fill this void and become a source of understanding, action and perhaps some inspiration.

Towards a meaningful industry integration


S. Yesudas, COO, Media Direction

The following thoughts were triggered by an article that appeared in exchange4media.com under the title "Big daddies of ad industry kiss and make up" These are entirely my personal views on the subject.

I am hoping to get a majority vote for my prediction (we are in a personality driven industry which of course is also reason to celebrate) simply because the industry can boast of such a recognizable talent base. But, the problem is when the personalities crowned by the industry forget the industry’s purpose and well-being and embark upon issues for personal reasons.

I’ve been observing the issues connected with the TV audience measurement system for a while. A few years ago, a representation from the industry called for a unified currency, needed then because of the disparity between different rating systems. Had there been an industrywide voting then, the single most differentiating view would have been that “monopoly is not good”.

However, the longer-term implications of creating a monopolistic situation didn’t seem like the primary concern for the representation then. It would perhaps have worked to the industry’s benefit had there been a certain code of conduct as far as the operating policies for the then new entity was concerned. This could have included issues like sample spread and its adequate representation across various target segments, pricing policies and guidelines for evolution considering the evolving nature of the medium itself. In the absence of any governing guidelines, the collective sample base between the then existing two operators got reduced to half and subscription rates increased.

Having taken on the responsibility, the new entity also tried some bit of successful innovation and, to my belief, they have been able to send clear signals of being an open-minded organization. However, the same industry that created this entity now led by a few others under the umbrella of the gate-keeping body, embarked upon an argument in the public space, questioning what may seem like the service provider’s existence!

What is this argument about is the question that might be going through some minds at least. Are we planning to kill our own creation? Do we want to create a parallel service provider? Or do we want to work with the already established organization as an industry with a genuine spirit of quality enhancement? This would be possible only when there is a meaningful dialogue. Surprisingly, all the arguments are put up in the public domain without an official dialogue between the gate-keeping body and the service provider.

My belief is that if a reasonable proposal is put forward for enhancing the quality of the measurement track by the governing body, guided by the views of practitioners, by understanding and appreciating that the service provider also has a business to run, solutions to most problems would automatically come about. If the service provider then sends signals of being non-cooperative, a call on how to deal with it should be taken by the governing body.

I would urge the practitioners, whose words are regarded in the industry, to put personality issues aside and come together to have meaningful discussions that can potentially enhance our overall quality. Till such time we can conclude on the corner stone, whether it is “personal glory” or “concern for industry’s growth”, integration plans will continue to be as unclear as the chicken-and-egg debate!

 
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How often do we pause and ponder about industry issues that have a bearing beyond just our rigmaroles? Share insights that can further the common understanding? Or, at the very least, point at things that need to be set right. View Point - an exchange4media platform, will fill this void and become a source of understanding, action and perhaps some inspiration.
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