In the light of the recent developments involving news channels, BARC Board has proposed that its Technical Committee (Tech Comm) will review and augment the current standards of measuring and reporting of the data of niche genres, to improve their statistical robustness and to significantly hamper potential attempts to infiltrate panel homes. This exercise would cover all Hindi, Regional, English news and business news channels with immediate effect.
Therefore, starting with the ‘News Genre’, BARC will cease publishing the weekly individual ratings of all news channels during the exercise. This exercise is expected to take around 8-12 weeks, including validation and testing under the supervision of BARC’s Tech Comm. BARC will continue to release weekly audience estimates for the news genre by state and language.
Explaining the need for this move, Punit Goenka, Chairman of BARC India Board, said, “Given the most recent developments, the BARC Board was of the opinion that a pause was necessitated to enable the industry and BARC to work closely to review its already stringent protocols and further augment them to enable the industry to focus on collaborating for growth and well-natured competitiveness.”
Sunil Lulla, CEO, BARC India, said, “We at BARC take our role in truthfully and faithfully reporting ‘What India Watches’ with the greatest sense of responsibility and work with integrity to ensure that our audience estimates (ratings) remain true to their purpose”.
He added, “Besides augmenting current protocols and benchmarking them with global standards, BARC is actively exploring several options to discourage unlawful inducement of its panel home viewers and further strengthening its Code of Conduct to address viewership malpractice.”