PBA temporarily suspends Express group’s membership
KARACHI: The Pakistan Broadcasters Association (PBA) has “temporarily” suspended the membership of Express and issued a show-cause notice to the media network for alleged tempering with viewership ratings through employees of a rating company, Medialogic.
A statement issued by the PBA says the decision was reached by the associations, board of directors which met for the fourth time in connection with Television Audience Measurement (TAM) tampering investigation that had been going on since Aug 1.
Also read: Medialogic CEO alleges Express Media Group manipulated TV ratings system
“The PBA board noted with concern that all types of disinformation was being spread about the said TAM tampering issue which was adversely affecting credibility of the TV media and advertising industry,” the statement said. “The PBA board regretted that instead of resolving the issue within the auspices of the PBA as agreed by both parties – the Express group, followed by Medialogic – have resorted to a media campaign against each other which is detrimental to the interests of the entire industry.”
The statement then mentioned different allegations levelled by Medialogic to explain how the Express group in connivance with its employees had tried to tamper with the viewership ratings in its favour which caused around Rs450 million loss to advertisers and broadcasters.
“However, so far Express has failed to provide any evidence or counter-allegation to PBA board, even though additional time was asked from PBA which was given,” said the statement. “Accordingly, a show-cause notice has been issued by PBA to the Express group along with evidence presented by Medialogic and the international audit report. As per PBA rules, Express has 10 days to give PBA its version, defence, or counter the allegations. Moreover, in order to ensure absolute neutrality in this regard, the PBA board has – as per the PBA rules – temporarily suspended membership of Express pending the show-cause proceedings as the latter is also the secretary general of PBA.”