The Incorporated Society of British Advertisers has demanded a high level meeting with Britain’s ITV companies to discuss the slump in audience ratings and its members’ dissatisfaction with the forthcoming autumn schedules - which it sees as “ safe rather than spectacular”.

ITV attracted only 36.2% of UK viewers in the second quarter of this year; the same period in 1999 drew ratings of 37.6%. ITV defends the fall with the claim that it is “well ahead of the BBC”.

ISBA members are also increasingly concerned at the potential merger of ITV’s three dominant companies, Granada, Carlton Communications and United News & Media – now feasible following the government’s recent easing of the rules restricting ownership of ITV companies [WAMN, 17-Jul-00]. Members fear that such a merger would drive up advertising rates.

News source: The Times (London)