Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 091575
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File Number: 091575 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-860-09 Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: URGE ATTY GEN ARBITRON PORTABLE PEOPLE METER RATINGS SYSTEM Introduced: 5/20/2009
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 6/30/2009
Agenda Date: 6/30/2009 Agenda Item Number: 11A2
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION URGING CONGRESS, THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE, AND FEDERAL AND STATE OFFICIALS TO ENSURE THAT THE RATINGS METHODOLOGY USED BY THE PORTABLE PEOPLE METER RATINGS SYSTEM DESIGNED TO MEASURE RADIO STATION LISTENERSHIP DOES NOT UNDER-REPRESENT MINORITY RADIO LISTENERS
Indexes: LEGISLATURE
Sponsors: Dennis C. Moss, Prime Sponsor
  Sen. Javier D. Souto, Co-Sponsor
  Carlos A. Gimenez, Co-Sponsor
  Barbara J. Jordan, Co-Sponsor
  Bruno A. Barreiro, Co-Sponsor
  Audrey M. Edmonson, Co-Sponsor
  Jose "Pepe" Diaz, Co-Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
  Dorrin D. Rolle, Co-Sponsor
  Natacha Seijas, Co-Sponsor
  Katy Sorenson, Co-Sponsor
  Rebeca Sosa, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 6/30/2009 11A2 Adopted P
REPORT: Chairman Moss relinquished the Chair. Chairman Moss explained the intent of the foregoing proposed resolution. He noted minority radio stations were facing problems. He said the Portable People Meter Rating System (PPM) by Arbitron had flaws, including serious short comings in the accuracy and reliability of the system which gives an inaccurate representation of minority listeners. He pointed out that the PPM significantly undercounts the listening habits of the minority consumers, does not present a valid and fair representation of the diversity of the radio market in different states, causing an improper decline in ratings of minority states leading to reduction in advertising revenue. Chairman Moss noted that Attorney Generals in New York, Maryland, and New Jersey have settled suits against Arbitron seeking to enforce state laws regarding discrimination and deceptive practices to ensure continuous improvement of Arbitron’s PPM system. He said this resolution urged Florida’s Attorney General and Legislature to investigate the use of the PPM system to determine whether it should be improved and corrected pursuant to the benchmark established by the settlement agreements. The following persons appeared in support of the foregoing proposed resolution: Ms. Claudia Puig-Univision Ms. Deborah Toomer-WMBM Mr. Luis Gonzalez-WHTC Mr. Joseph Goldsmith, Attorney, 671 Brickell Avenue noted that although the commission would act on this resolution at today’s (6/30) meeting Arbitron wanted to put a statement on the record. Mr. Evan Jefferson (phonetic), Senior Account Manager, Arbitron read a letter on behalf of Arbitron into the record. He highlighted initiatives that Arbitron had put in place to help address some of the concerns that have been expressed. Mr. Jefferson noted that Arbitron was dedicated to increasing more targets and minority listeners in PPM samples, continuing ongoing dialog with broadcasters and industrial groups and that advertising agencies, the Federal Communications Commission and Congress was part of the commitment to the continuous improvement of the PPM service and technologies. Commissioner Seijas noted that she felt the letter Mr. Jefferson presented did not answer the Board’s concerns that are outlined within the foregoing resolution. Chairman Moss retained the Chair.

Board of County Commissioners 6/2/2009 11A25 Deferred 6/30/2009 P

County Attorney 5/20/2009 Assigned Rudy A. Ruiz

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION URGING CONGRESS, THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE, AND FEDERAL AND STATE OFFICIALS TO ENSURE THAT THE RATINGS METHODOLOGY USED BY THE PORTABLE PEOPLE METER RATINGS SYSTEM DESIGNED TO MEASURE RADIO STATION LISTENERSHIP
DOES NOT UNDER-REPRESENT MINORITY RADIO LISTENERS

BODY
WHEREAS, the PPM system contains methodological flaws, including serious shortcomings in the accuracy and reliability of the system given its inadequate representation of Hispanic, African American, and other minority listeners; and
WHEREAS, the PPM system, by significantly undercounting the listening habits of minority consumers, does not present a valid and fair representation of the diversity of radio markets in different states, thereby causing an improper decline in ratings for minority stations leading to reductions in advertising revenue; and
WHEREAS, such reductions in advertising revenue put the viability of many minority radio broadcasters at risk, thereby harming overall broadcast diversity; and
WHEREAS, the Attorneys General in New York, New Jersey, and Maryland have all settled suits against Arbitron seeking to enforce state laws regarding discrimination and deceptive practices in an effort to ensure continuous improvement by Arbitron of its PPM system before it is further commercialized in additional markets; and
WHEREAS, Arbitron has already begun to commercialize its PPM system within the State of Florida, specifically radio markets located in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Hollywood, and intends to further roll out its PPM system over the coming year in Orlando, West Palm Beach, and Boca Raton
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that this Board:
Section 1. Urges Congress to enact legislation and the Federal Communications Commission to enact rules to ensure that the ratings methodology used by the PPM system does not under-represent minority radio listeners.
Section 2. Urges the Florida Legislature to enact legislation and the Florida Public Service Commission to enact rules to ensure that the ratings methodology used by the PPM system does not under-represent minority radio listeners, and to also make certain that PPM sampling procedures obtain Media Research Council accreditation in Florida to prevent them from negatively affecting minority broadcast stations.
Section 3. Urges Florida’s Attorney General to investigate the use of the PPM system in Florida to determine whether it is being improved and corrected pursuant to the benchmarks established by settlement agreements reached by the Attorneys General in New York, New Jersey, and Maryland with Arbitron, and to ensure that the terms secured by those states that have settled with Arbitron also benefit radio markets in Florida.
Section 4. Directs the Clerk of the Board to transmit certified copies of the resolution to the Florida Congressional Delegation, the Chair and Commissioners of the Federal Communications Commission, Florida’s Governor, the Florida Attorney General, President of the Florida Senate, Speaker of the Florida House, the Chair and Members of the Miami-Dade State Legislative Delegation, and the Chair and Commissioners of the Florida Public Service Commission.
Section 5. Directs the County’s federal and state lobbyists to advocate for the actions set forth in Sections 1, 2 and 3 above and directs that the 2009 and 2010 Federal and 2010 State Legislative Packages be amended to include this item.



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