MRC: Nielsen Has “Deep-Rooted, Ongoing” Problems

(Image credit: Nielsen)

NEW YORK—The Media Rating Council has pushed back against Nielsen’s request to suspend the accreditation process for its National Television Service by noting “deep-rooted, ongoing performance” problems and stressed that any decision to put the accreditation process on hold would need to be approved by the MRC board. 

In a statement, the MRC noted that the matter has been referred to the full MRC Board of Directors for its consideration and that no decision has been made. 

The MRC also noted that if an accreditation hiatus status is granted for a temporary period, “the service is not considered to be accredited by MRC.”

“In accordance with a provision in MRC’s procedures, Nielsen has asked to step away from the MRC accreditation process and enter a temporary hiatus period,” said George W. Ivie, executive director and CEO of the MRC in a statement. “However, in addition to those reasons for seeking a hiatus that Nielsen cited in its public statement on this matter, we are compelled to note that the National Television Service has also had some deep-rooted, ongoing performance issues that have threatened its accreditation, many of which predated the well-documented COVID pandemic related impacts to its panels. Because of the totality and the gravity of these issues, we believe the matter requires further consideration by the full MRC Board before a conclusion on the National Television Service’s accreditation status is reached. In addition, Nielsen was previously invited to a meeting of the MRC Television Committee scheduled for next week to address these matters directly with the Committee, and this invitation remains in place.”

The MRC also stated that regardless of its accreditation standing, Nielsen continues to have a responsibility to provide full transparency to both MRC and to Nielsen’s customers as Nielsen works to resolve problems with its panels. 

“The continued threat to panel processes presented by COVID-related impacts remains real, and Nielsen maintains a responsibility to keep MRC and its clients fully informed about any related process changes and impacts that may occur as a result,” the MRC said.

George Winslow

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.