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MRUC stands by IRS methodology, RSCI to decide IRS 2013 fate on 19 Feb

MUMBAI: Even after getting a 24-hour ultimatum from the Indian Newspapers Society (INS) for withdrawing the Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2013 findings, Media Research Users Council (MRUC) today backed the design, methodology and in-field execution of the study.

Following an emergency board meeting, MRUC said that the Readership Studies Council of India (RSCI) is in charge of governance of the study and that the MRUC is no longer at liberty to make a unilateral determination of the way forward, “particularly in a situation as contentious as it appears today”.

Further, RSCI has called for a meeting on 19 February, where all aspects of the study will be placed before it for “helping the broader community of stakeholders convince themselves” about the study’s “robustness and integrity”.

The IRS 2013 data was released on 28 January and many publishers, including the Times Group, Dainik Bhaskar, Jagran Prakashan and The Hindu, had publicly condemned the findings.

On Monday, the INS sought a meeting with the MRUC to discuss the situation and the way forward, in which it issued an ultimatum of 24-hours to MRUC. Following the meeting, the MRUC Chairman convened an emergency meeting of the Board of Governors to crystallise the Council’s point of view today.

In its statement after the meeting, MRUC said: “The Council asserts that the design, methodology and in-field execution of the study was benchmarked to and conducted at the very highest standards. The massive integration of technology, from DS-CAPI, through automated collation and tabulation, to a brand new UI (user interface) with a comprehensive suite of on-board analytics played a crucial role in this exercise. The Council intended to deliver a study that could legitimately carry the ‘Gold Standard’ appellation. It is satisfied that the study has moved many steps forward in that direction.”

Also read:

IRS 2013: INS gives MRUC 24-hour ultimatum
IRS 13: Media agencies agree on ‘glaring errors’ but say too early to trash the report
All new IRS 2013 data holds surprises and shocks
DB Corp spotlights anomalies in IRS 2013 data
New IRS 2013 data mired in controversy