TAIWAN: AC Neilson's domination of TV ratings research ends

Four terrestrial TV stations yesterday signed a deal with local TV ratings and research firm Broadcasters Market Research Co, ending AC Nielsen's decades-long monopoly on TV research in this country

Taipei Times
Friday, December 19, 2003

By Cody Yiu

Four terrestrial TV stations yesterday signed a deal with local TV ratings and research firm Broadcasters Market Research Co, ending AC Nielsen's decades-long monopoly on TV research in this country.

"It took us, the media industry, three years to plan for this local television ratings research firm," said Lee Ching-ping, a Broadcasters Market Research board member.

"There was only one ratings firm around before, which was an abnormal phenomenon in advertising and media industries," Lee said.

"As the four terrestrial television stations took the lead today to work with us, we hope cable and satellite stations will follow suit," Lee said.

The four stations are Taiwan Television, Chinese Television System (CTS), China TV and Formosa Television.

US-based AC Nielsen had dominated the TV research business in this country since 1982.

According to Broadcasters Market Research, TV stations began to question the accuracy of AC Nielsen's rating reports and were not pleased with the responses they received, prompting them to seek alternatives.

"It has been said that the media are partly responsible for the disorderly Taiwanese society we have today," said Teng Chang-fu, business manager at CTS.

"By having another TV ratings research firm, we hope to have more fair and transparent reports regarding the industry," Teng said.

Broadcasters Market Research was founded in 2001 and began operating last year. The company has adopted the latest technology from Video Research, a Japanese television-ratings research firm, and is funded by various Taiwanese media and research companies.

"Ratings are the most important factor for media personnel as they are what we look for first thing in the morning," said Soong Yu-min, program manger at China TV.

"We hope that by having competition in the ratings industry, there will be better programs and shows in the future," Soong said.