Audit body and Nielsen agree last minute deal to stop audited traffic data going dark

audited media association of australia logoAudience measurement company Nielsen and industry body the Audited Media Association of Australia have agreed a last minute deal which will avoid members being without audited numbers in September.

Late last week, Nielsen – which is not participating in the AMAA’s tender for a new provider – agreed to go on supplying numbers for a further month.

The move came after the auditor wrote to members to warn them that audits would go dark during September.

The AMAA – the  industry body formed after the merger of the Audit Bureau of Circulations and the Circulation Audits Bureau – called the tender in May after four years using Nielsen’s Market Intelligence service.

The AMAA deal had allowed smaller publishers a relatively low cost means of having their site traffic audited. Many of Australia’s larger publishers did not sign up for auditing, in part because they would not have been compliant with audit rules on autorefreshed pages not being permitted.

Nielsen announced a fortnight after the tender was called that it would not take part in the pitch.

Mumbrella understands that the pitch is down to two players, with industry speculation pointing to them being Effective Measure and ComScore.

The AMAA wrote to members warning that with a deal not yet in place, there would be no audited numbers until October 1.

amaa email

But the AMAA’s CEO Paul Dovas told Mumbrella today that Nielsen had agreed to extend reporting. He said in a statement: “The AMAA is on track to re-launch its Web Audit Service on 1 October 2013. An independent review committee representing a cross section of the AMAA membership has assessed a short-list of platform candidates and has made a recommendation to the AMAA who will now proceed with technical and commercial reviews. The service will also introduce new audit elements which will be rolled out over September in readiness for the 1 October launch.”

Meanwhile, the AMAA has written to members warning that although Nielsen will measure autorefreshed pages those who choose to stick with Nielsen will lose their audited status if they use autorefresh.

audit refresh email

But Nielsen told Mumbrella that it had always recorded autorefreshed pages. In a statement, Monique Perry, Nielsen’s head of media industry g said: “Nielsen Online Ratings – Market Intelligence has always reported total page impression inventory including auto refreshed pages, photo galleries or framed pages. Nielsen Online Ratings – Hybrid data has always reported page views that are user requested and where more than 50% of the page content changes. Nielsen supports the ABA audit process by adding green ticks when informed by the ABA that sites are accredited according to their criteria.”

Nielsen is the preferred supplier of the Interactive Advertising Bureau, which is the voice of Australia’s major online publishers.


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