Free TV slams News Corp newspaper readership campaign for being ‘misleading’

The Advertiser August2Industry television body Free TV Australia yesterday denounced a News Corp Australia campaign in the Advertiser/Sunday Mail promoting the size of audience and comparing it to the local audience of the highly popular Masterchef cooking show.

In a statement, Free TV claimed the ad comparing the 169,000 viewers in Adelaide who watched Masterchef Monday night with the average weekday print readership of The Adelaide Advertiser was “misleading”.

“A rookie mistake like this would see a first-year media buyer shown the door,” said Harold Mitchell, chairman of Free TV .

FreeTV said the comparison wasn’t fair because print readership surveys were based on online surveys that rely on a person’s recall as opposed to television’s people-meter data, which reports actual television viewing on a panels of Australian homes through the OzTam system.

The industry body also questioned the decision of News Corp to focus on a 12-month average weekday reach for The Adelaide Advertiser with the average audience of part of a network’s daily content for just one program. It also noted that the company omitted that the fact that TV program audiences are averages across every minute of an individual episode with the overall program reach being significantly higher.

Source: Ebquity.

Source: Ebquity. Click to enlarge

“While all media measurement systems aim to provide the best audience estimates they can, no other Australian media can match the robust, transparent and accountable reporting of OzTAM and Regional TAM ratings,” said Mitchell.

“Nor do any other media deliver the consistent, mass audiences that commercial television programs do, with individual prime-time shows routinely attracting hundreds of thousands of viewers in Adelaide every week.”

A News Corp spokesman declined to comment on Free TV remarks and whether the publisher stood by its claims.

Nic Christensen 


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