Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

IPTV to be launched from this festive season

September 28, 2006

India is going to witness IPTV soon “Trials for the Internet Protocal TV (IPTV), through which one can enjoy TV programmes on PC’s and surf internet on TV sets, are complete and the state-owned MTNL is all ready to launch it in Mumbai and Delhi from this festive season, but for some clarifications from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).The MTNL would be launching the service for the first time in the country in collaboration with the Time Broadband Services Pvt Ltd.”



India Today, Bloomberg tie up for TV

July 18, 2006

Two more Business News channels are in the offing. One from India Today group and another from Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance.

India Today is partnering with Bloomberg for the business news channel. Bloomberg is a big name in the field of Business and Information. This will be the third channel from India Today group. Other two channels are Aaj Tak [Hindi News] and Headlines Today [ English News].

Reliance has already engaged Ernst & Young to study the financial feasibility of the proposed venture, the Mukesh Ambani-controlled group has appointed Prateek Basu, a former Disney hand, to spearhead its initiative to launch three media channels.The Observer Research Foundation will be the group’s vehicle for this business

Posted by Harikrishnan P V

Government may relax cross media holdings restriction in proposed Broadcast Bill

July 17, 2006

See this. In an earlier post i told we will watch I and B Minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunshi on the Broadcast Bill issue. Now is he coming down. He hints that the cross media restrictions might be relaxed for Indian media companies. But at the same time he is saying the Bill will not be diluted onor polluted.Posted by Harikrishnan

Indiavision targets 5 November launch for entertainment channel ‘Yes’

July 15, 2006

There are so many rumors about Indiavision. Closing the channel, selling the channel, dubious investors investing in it and what not. The latest rumor was Muthoot Group of Kerala [basically involved in finance related businesses] has invested in it. CPM owned television channel Kairali has broadcasted this news too. Latest revelations from the resident director of Indiavision Satellite Communications Ltd. clears some fog in these issues.

Any way they are still ready to get more investments in to the company. You can read that between the lines. But the serious financial trouble which it was facing is over. It seems like that. So they are planning to launch a Entertainment channel. Yes the name of the new channel will be “Yes”.



Nielsen to offer integrated, all-electronic TV measurement across multiple media platforms

June 18, 2006

MUMBAI: Nielsen Media Research has announced that it will provide integrated, all-electronic ratings for television regardless of the platform on which it is viewed.

Nielsen's Anytime Anywhere Media Measurement (A2/M2) initiative will develop and deploy technology to measure the new ways consumers are watching television, such as on the Internet, outside the home, and via cell phones, iPods and other personal, mobile devices.

Developed in close consultation with clients, A2/M2 reflects the transformation of the television industry into a multi-platform business. Key components include:

* A continued focus on providing the most accurate measurement of in-home television viewing through state-of-the-art Active/Passive (A/P) metering technology.

* Measurement of online streaming video as well as the addition of Internet measurement in Nielsen's People Meter samples.

* The addition of Out-of-Home measurement in Nielsen's People Meter samples.

* The introduction of electronic measurement in all local markets, targeted for 2011.

* The development of new meters to measure video viewed on portable media devices.

* The creation of new research for measuring viewer "engagement" in TV programming.

These initiatives build on the significant progress Nielsen has made in modernizing media measurement for the 21st Century, such as launching the Active/Passive meter, which serves as the basis for measuring all time-shifted and place-shifted viewing; introducing electronic Local People Meters into the top 10 local markets; measuring DVR and VOD viewing; and securing a majority stake in Nielsen//NetRatings (NetRatings, Inc.), the leading Internet measurement company, states an official release.

"As digital distribution of television transforms the way our clients do business, Nielsen is keeping pace with new ways of measuring TV wherever it is viewed," says Nielsen Media Research president and chief executive officer Susan D. Whiting. "With continued client direction, patented technologies, internal focus on speed and innovation and unrivalled understanding of how people watch television, Nielsen is uniquely positioned to anticipate and respond to the industry's evolution."

"A2/M2 is the result of extensive consultation with clients, who told us clearly that we should 'follow the video' and deliver integrated measurement of all television-like content regardless of platform," Whiting continued. "A2/M2 recognizes that there is no 'one size fits all' approach to measuring television, while launching the most extensive research and testing program in the company's history. We thank our clients for the time they spent helping us develop this initiative and look forward to their continued collaboration during its implementation."

To accelerate the process of bringing new systems to market, Nielsen has created on-going test panels of households recruited and managed in the same way as its existing currency samples. This will include a test panel of households leaving Nielsen's currency samples at the conclusion of their maximum two-year tenure. This testing will enable Nielsen to quickly answer many fundamental methodological questions prior to extensive field testing, thus speeding the development and introduction of new services, the release adds.

Integrating Television and Internet Measurement

The technological and economic barriers that have traditionally divided the media are starting to come down, and nowhere is this more evident than in the relationship between television and the Internet.

As more and more streaming video content, including traditional television programming, becomes available online, content providers need to measure this viewing and understands how it complements their traditional television programming. To help media clients measure their growing online presence, Nielsen Media Research and its sister company NetRatings, provider of the Nielsen//NetRatings service, will introduce a number of unique integrated measurement services:

* Nielsen//NetRatings will establish the industry's most comprehensive system for tracking and reporting digital audio and video delivered via the Internet. Nielsen//NetRatings will integrate data from its SiteCensus service, which uses proprietary "ping back" technology to provide highly accurate and granular measurement of what is delivered online, with demographic data from its representative metered panels of Internet users. Local broadcast stations and cable operators will be able to take advantage of Nielsen//NetRatings' SiteCensus Market Intelligence service, which offers syndicated Internet audience measurement data.

* Nielsen will add Internet television measurement to its People Meter samples next year, creating a single panel to measure the relationship among TV viewing, web site usage and streaming video consumption. Under the plan, this summer Nielsen will install and test software meters, including Nielsen//NetRatings' patented metering technology, on the

personal computers and laptops of People Meter panelists exiting our panels, with the goal of fully deploying them during the 2007-2008 broadcast season. Nielsen will use the testing to identify the potential impact of Internet measurement on panel-quality metrics.

* As a springboard to the introduction of this single-sample

Internet/television panel, beginning this summer Nielsen and

Nielsen//NetRatings will offer "fused" data, combining the viewing results from matching respondents in their television and Internet panels. This will make it possible to report the relationship between television and Internet consumption, and to provide combined reporting of viewership of broadcast or cable networks and usage of their web sites. This fused data will be an important planning tool to allow agencies and advertisers to optimize combined TV/Internet campaigns.

"NetRatings has a long history of leadership and innovation in Internet measurement and we are pleased to expand our partnership with Nielsen Media Research to develop the industry's most advanced measurement of Internet television," says NetRatings, Inc. president & CEO William Pulver. "By bringing together the best assets of our two companies, we will offer media and advertising clients a unique service for navigating the rapid convergence of TV and online media."

Measuring Television Outside the Home

Because consumers increasingly are watching traditional television away from home, including at work, in bars, restaurants, hotels and airports, Nielsen is developing and testing new personal meters to measure this viewing. Nielsen expects to introduce these meters into its National and Local People Meter panels by the end of 2008 and eventually add out-of-home viewing into its national and local television currencies.

Starting this fall and continuing into the beginning of 2007, Nielsen will conduct a preliminary external test of two personal meters, called "Go Meters," designed to capture out-of-home viewing by collecting audio signatures. One device places metering technology in cell phones and the other is a customized meter that resembles an MP3 player. Nielsen will likely offer panelists several options based on their experiences and preferences.

Expanding Electronic Measurement

Given the hundreds of television channels available to consumers and the growing popularity of digital services such as video on demand (VOD) and digital video recorders (DVRs), Nielsen has in recent years been engaged in an extended dialogue with clients about how to bring improved electronic measurement to local markets.

Based on these discussions, Nielsen is committed to bringing electronic measurement to its local-market services, both by adding electronic persons measurement to existing Set-Meter markets and by converting Diary-only markets to electronic measurement. It will do so through the following initiatives:

* Nielsen will expand Local People Meter (LPM) service beyond the 10 largest local television markets to the next 15 largest markets. These rollouts will begin when they are launched in Houston, Seattle and Tampa in October 2007. At the end of the roll-out process, local samples representing nearly half of the U.S. population would be measured by LPMs.

* For existing Set-Meter markets in markets sizes 26 to 60, Nielsen will introduce the A/P 3.0, a variation of the Active/Passive meter that will not need to be wired directly into the TV set. This meter is designed to be placed next to the television, where it will accurately collect the required TV on/off and program information. Information on who is watching the program will be collected through the same People Meter technology used in National and Local People Meters, which will be integrated into the A/P 3.0 design. Pending the results of large-scale field tests, Nielsen plans to begin introducing these meters into remaining Set Meter markets in 2008.

* For medium-size, current Diary-only markets (approximately market size 61 to 125), Nielsen proposes to mail battery-powered meters to sample homes, initially supplementing them with simple viewing logs. The meters would be placed near televisions to capture all programming on the set, requiring household members to record only what they watched. At the end of the survey period, participants would mail back the meters and logs. Pending sufficient and successful test results by mid-2007, Nielsen will decide whether to proceed with this approach.

* For smaller markets currently served only by the paper Diary, Nielsen will aggressively pursue a full electronic measurement plan and investigate a number of possible electronic solutions, including set-top box data and Internet Diaries. Nielsen understands the technological and financial challenges of providing electronic measurement in every market and has set a target to reach this goal by 2011.

* Nielsen will work on a parallel track to develop and test passive persons measurement, including wearable personal tags that let meters know when viewers are in direct line of sight of their TV sets. If these tests prove effective from both a quality and economic perspective, tags could conceivably replace button-pushing in People Meter homes. This will require extensive methodological and field testing before such a decision can be made.

Tracking Portable Media Devices

Nielsen is building the foundation to measure television content that is migrating to new portable media platforms — including cell phones, iPod, portable game players and handheld computers — in ways that clients can evaluate and monetize.

The company is continuing engineering work to create "Solo Meters" that can be used with any portable media system. For platforms that use a wireless, Bluetooth connection, Nielsen is developing a very small wireless meter that would passively listen to communication between mated devices. For systems that are wired, Nielsen is building a diminutive "in-line" meter that would be physically inserted between the device and its earphones.

Both metering solutions would be "device-neutral" to work with a wide variety of personal media platforms without having to be customized for specific devices. They also would identify viewing by collecting audio signatures. Development of the systems starts this summer and functional prototypes would be available within six to 12 months, so that testing could begin by the latter part of next year.

As Nielsen pursues these initiatives, it also is implementing a comprehensive research plan to track consumer adoption and usage of a wide array of portable media devices, including the creation of a 400-person panel of iPod users by the end of 2006.

Measuring Engagement

To help address the industry's desire to adopt a measure of engagement for television, Nielsen is conducting a detailed test to evaluate the strength of intrinsic and extrinsic measurements.

The pilot program, which also will help lay the groundwork for possible engagement metrics, is being undertaken in consultation with a 20-member client committee representing broadcast and cable networks, syndicators and agencies.

National and Local People Meter households that are leaving the panel will be asked to maintain the meters for an additional six weeks, during which time they will participate in telephone surveys designed to measure commercial recall and qualitative engagement factors for the programs they watch.

The test will evaluate the strength of behavioral measures in predicting commercial recall, an important attribute in advertising strategy.

Nielsen expects to publish the results of the survey in the fall, at which time it will decide on future plans, including additional phases of research or the launch of a specific engagement product.


Google News inventor defends aggregator site

June 5, 2006

Growing up in India, Krishna Bharat read his local paper, watched national television, and listened to the BBC World Service."I was amazed how complementary the three perspectives were," Bharat recounts. These days, he is Google's principal scientist and best known for developing Google News, which has rapidly become one of the major news aggregators on the internet since it launched in 2002. 



TV Today net up 66% at Rs 11.03 cr

May 30, 2006

MUMBAI: TV Today Network Ltd on Monday posted an increase of 66.86 per cent in net profit at Rs 11.03 crore for the quarter ended March 31, as against Rs 6.61 crore for the corresponding quarter last year.

The total income of the company increased 25.83 per cent to Rs 51.44 crore for the quarter ended March 31, from Rs 40.88 crore in the same period in 2004-05, the electronic media company informed the Bombay Stock Exchange.

The board of directors of the company at its meeting held today, recommended dividend of Re 0.75 on share of Rs five (15 per cent) on the paid up capital of the company for the financial year 2005-06, it added.

For the year ended March 31, 2006, the net profit of the company increased to Rs 27.77 crore from Rs 16.43 crore a year ago and the total income of the company increased from Rs 167.89 crore from Rs 146.45 crore in a year ago period.

The shares of the company closed at Rs 91.45, up 2.98 per cent on the BSE.


Why are there no free dailies in India?

May 29, 2006

MUMBAI: ‘Mumbai Mirror’ is distributed free along with the main edition of ‘The Times of India’ (‘TOI’). Similarly, the Mumbai based daily, ‘DNA’, was distributed free in the city’s air-conditioned buses for the first few months of its launch. And, of course, you can pick up some of the major dailies for free at domestic airports.

But leaving aside these few instances and the fistful of small-time local players such as ‘Neighbourhood Flash’ and ‘Ontrack Suburb’, India is still to get a full-fledged free daily. Estimates suggest that there are around 25 million copies of free dailies being distributed around the world.

The lack of free newspapers is especially surprising when you consider that Indian newspapers are the cheapest in the world – cheaper by far than any newspaper in the developed world or even developing countries like Pakistan. In fact, many English dailies are sold for as low as Re 1 or Rs 2 – practically free, you could say. The initial subscription offers of ‘DNA’ and ‘Hindustan Times’ (‘HT’) in Mumbai, during their launch period, further reduced the cost of the newspaper to around 50 paise for an average issue.

When Indian newspaper publishers are offering their dailies dirt cheap, why is that till date, we haven’t got a full-fledged free daily?

According to Lynn D’Souza, director, Lintas Media Group, the current model of low-priced dailies is a result of competitive pressures, rather than a deliberate attempt to develop a unique business model.

D’Souza says, "The model in India is to charge a low subscription cost and to tie up with advertisers for good consumer promotions, plus to offer huge incentives to the trade."

She points out that the free dailies that exist abroad genuinely operate on a different business model, from the type of editorial they cover to the costs they incur on reportage, etc.

Indian media experts are unanimous in the belief that the quality of newsprint and the editorial content of the free dailies in Europe and North America are poor in quality, which might not be acceptable to either Indian readers or advertisers.

Other senior media planners such as Ravi Kiran, CEO, South Asia, Starcom MediaVest Group, are of the opinion that the mindset of Indian advertisers and media planners work against free vehicles when it comes to newspapers and magazines.

Kiran cites the example of magazines such as ‘Filmfare’, which have been badmouthed by the industry in the past because they offered a premium the value of which compared with the cover price of the magazine. "This mindset is really sad since they do not apply the same logic to free to air TV or radio!" exclaims Kiran.

D’Souza of Lintas says that free dailies do well in markets where the cost of a newspaper is at par or more than a can of soft drink.

It also works in markets where the retail and classified sectors are well developed.

ND Badrinath, director, client services, AC Nielsen, which is into media research, concurs with D’Souza of Lintas.

He says, "The ratio of advertising and subscription revenue for an Indian newspaper publisher is 80:20. And this 20 per cent subscription revenue needs to be compensated by advertising revenue, which can come from a rise in classified advertising."

But he says, "Classified advertising is still to pick up in India. Indian consumers still rely more on word of mouth rather than classified advertising, unlike the trend in other developed countries."

But does this mean India cannot sustain a free daily model?

Bhaskar Das, executive president, ‘TOI’, doesn’t see it happening in the next five years, not even in the case of ‘Mumbai Mirror’, which is being distributed free now with the ‘TOI’.

Das points out that it wouldn’t be correct to slot ‘Mumbai Mirror’ as a free daily. Rather, ‘Mumbai Mirror’ complements the ‘TOI’. Above all, it is also sold as a standalone newspaper at the newsstands.

The biggest hindrance for a ‘free’ business model, according to Das, is the existence of the ‘raddi’ (scrap) market. He explains, "Unlike other developed countries, there is a value for ‘raddi’ in India. Keeping copies of free dailies at pick-up terminals such as a railway station or a bus terminus will not ensure that the dailies reach the readers. And having our own distribution network to ensure that the dailies reach the readers’ homes is not financially viable."

"This in turn makes it difficult to identify the readers of a free daily, which will again create the wrong illusion for advertisers. That’s why such a business model has a huge logistical problem in India."

Das adds, "By distributing the ‘Mumbai Mirror’ free along with the ‘TOI’, we can at least ensure that the daily is reaching the existing ‘TOI’ readers." "It’s a strategic decision," he quips.

But not everyone is so pessimistic, at least not those on the advertising front.

Kiran of Starcom is hopeful that there is a potential for free newspapers in India. "As the established newspapers stagnate or shrink in their readership, and as key audience segments such as the youth are lost to other media, newspaper publishers will be forced to launch free titles to appeal to the non-readers of traditional dailies."

According to him, there is a lack of proper future focus among publishers.

Currently, many publishers are boosting their revenue by launching additional editions and increasing their ad rates periodically. But very soon, as Kiran of Starcom, says, these two initiatives will stop working.

D’Souza of Lintas is positive that India could have some free dailies a few years from now, especially in the metros and mini metros. She is of the opinion that the growth of the retail sector will drive the growth in free dailies in India.

She says, "These free dailies will be supported both in terms of advertising revenue and solving the logistical problem of being a distribution centre of free dailies as opposed to the current news agent system."


Dailies in ad alliance

May 28, 2006

The Hindu, Eenadu, Daily Hindi Milap, Siasat Daily in new ad alliance for Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Five years after The Hindu-Eenadu alliance came into being, the duo have joined hands with Daily Hindi Milap and Siasat Daily to announce a new advertising alliance – the ‘New CHARminar’ – starting June 1, 2006.The Hindu and Eenadu’s media alliance began in June 2001. Initially limited to Andhra Pradesh, the combination was extended to cover all editions of The Hindu and Eenadu in November 2001.

"The alliance heralded the coming together of two leading media companies in the English and language space, with similar values, with the objective of offering advertisers More for Less, more reach at lesser costs, through concessional combined advertising rates," said a statement issued jointly by the four publications who are part of CHARminar.

The alliance has also helped both publications grow volumes and market share, making it a win-win scenario for all concerned, it added.

The ‘New CHARminar’ will offer advertisers a one-stop solution to reach audiences in Hyderabad through the four participating publications. Daily Hindi Milap delivers a Hindi-reading audience through its 34,194 copies, while Siasat Daily delivers Urdu readers with a circulation of 42,869 (ABC figures, July-December, 2005).

The alliance is described by the four as a ‘logical extension’ of the existing alliance between Eenadu and The Hindu.


Media Blog from India

May 28, 2006

This is a media blog with special reference to Indian Media. People can send news and information for publishing it in this blog Media World (MW)