Date: 20th February 2001

Dueling Ratings Services Provoke Havoc In Oz

The launch of OzTAM, a new TV ratings service in Australia that is competing with A.C. Nielsen, has touched off widespread consternation among TV outlets and ad agencies who have noted "enormous and erratic discrepancies" (the words of one channel) between the results of the two services.

Australian newspapers reported today (Tuesday) that Media Federation, representing 80 percent of the country's ad agencies, met Monday night with officials of OzTAM to express its concern. In particular, advertisers want OzTAM to account for the significantly smaller overall audience that it has recorded versus Nielsen's. Media Federation president Mr Peter Cornelius told Melbourne newspaper The Age: "We now have clients legitimately asking what's going on, what should I do with my buying this year on TV, and we have to say we don't know. So once it's got to that level, it has to be resolved and pretty damn quickly. ... Clients are holding off committing to TV or are only committing minimal amounts."

Source: WENN