NEW YORK: US media buyer Starcom Mediavest has laid down new rules for negotiations over upfront television advertising deals.

The Publicis Groupe-owned agency says it will only talk to TV networks that apply "precision metrics" to their sales offerings and will no longer do business with unrated TV networks. In the past deals have been inked on the basis of ratings estimates.

Starcom says in a statement: "Networks previously not listed in national ratings data that want to partner with Starcom's roster of advertiser clients must add a dimension of quantitative metrics data to their negotiations with the agency."

The agency is referring to second-by-second ratings such as those offered by DVR pioneer TiVo.

It is also interested in the TNS DIRECTView service and The Nielsen Company's intention to combine traditional audience measurement data with more quantitative data pulled from cable operator Charter's Los Angeles subscribers.

Says Starcom president/chief activation officer Chris Boothe: "This 'pre-upfront pledge' to the market is yet another phase in Starcom's plan to lead the market in accountability and accuracy and provide an unparalleled advantage for its clients."

Data sourced from (UK); additional content by WARC staff