Pedestrian pulls out of AMAA web audit citing lack of market participation

Pedestrian.TV has pulled out of the Audited Media Association of Australia’s website measurement audit blaming the fact its competitors do not take part in it and a lack of innovation as reasons.

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The youth-oriented website, which is partly owned by Nine Entertainment Co., withdrew from the audit in July.

Chris Wirasinha, co-founder of Pedestrian.TV, told Mumbrella: “We are very supportive of what the AMAA was setting out to achieve – which is why we were a member for so many years – however, ultimately we didn’t really feel it was living up to its goals due to a lack of market participation.”

Wirasinha said the decision was driven by the fact that “only a handful” of Pedestrian’s competitors were members, adding: “While it was nice to consistently be the number one ranking site in regards to visitation that the AMAA audited, it didn’t really give us a complete picture of the market”.


Wirasinha: We didn’t see “any reason” to keep paying membership fees

However, the publisher is still taking part in the IAB-backed Nielsen website measurement service.

Wirasinha said: “Nielsen Market Intelligence offered a very similar service with broader coverage across the market. To our knowledge the AMAA hasn’t innovated in regards to cross-platform measurement across Instant Articles, Google AMP, Apple News.

“So, ultimately, we were paying our membership fees of a few thousand dollars a year and not really seeing any reason to keep this up.”

According to Nielsen, Pedestrian had a July unique audience of 482,000 while Pedestrian’s competitors Junkee Media posted an audience of 370,000, Buzzfeed reported an audience of 2.197m and Vice Australia had an audience of 447,000.

The AMAA announced its website measurement service in December 2013 with the AMAA claiming at the time that it would provide media agencies with a range of audited metrics to “bring more rigour” to online figures.

Josanne Ryan:

Josanne Ryan: “The AMMA is not a digital analytics specialist”

Josanne Ryan, AMAA CEO, said: “The AMAA Digital Analytics Service was established to support mid-small publishers that found some inconsistent reporting in the hybrid model of Nielsen Online Ratings audience measurement at that time in 2012.

“It was never designed to offer a service comparable with or in competition with Nielsen digital audience measurement, which is the IAB-endorsed provider to the industry.

“The AMAA service utilises the Comscore Digital Analytix (now Adobe Analytics) platform that delivers site traffic based on impressions data in the same way as Nielsen Market Intelligence.

“The AMAA is not a digital analytics specialist, like Nielsen or Comscore, we are not producing audience data or cross platform metrics, we are providing validated traffic measurement, including an audit layer for member sites on this service.”

She said the AMAA is also looking to make improvements to the service.

“Digital measurement has moved forward dramatically since this service was established in 2012 and the AMAA is are currently working on a review of this service and evaluating the digital verification services developed by the Alliance of Audited Media, USA,” she added.

The Alliance of Audited Media launched an Ad Block Gauge in March which provides users with data in a custom dashboard about the percentage of page impressions blocked by ad blockers, as well as the operating system, geolocation and device type of the blocking visitor.

The body has also looked to tackle online ad fraud, invalid traffic viewability and transparency of digital advertising metrics and practices by aligning with the Institute of Verified Communications to form the Global Alliance for Digital Assurance.

Last month Fairfax Media announced it was withdrawing its mastheads from the AMAA’s digital audit.


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