OFT to look at CRR

The Office of Fair Trading will make its decision on whether to review contracts rights renewal by the end of summer.

With the start of the TV trading season – which will see advertising deals struck between broadcasters and media agencies for 2008 – starting next month, any decision to review CRR is unlikely to have an impact on ITV until 2009.

“The OFT can confirm ITV has asked for a review of CRR and we are expecting a decision on whether to conduct a review before the end of the summer,” said the OFT.

ITV has been lobbying hard for a review or a modification to CRR, which compensates advertisers when ITV1’s audience share dips. It means advertisers can demand refunds or further ads if the ratings fall below what they were sold when the advertising deal was done.

Buying agencies, unsurprisingly, are against the end of CRR. If the OFT decided to a review was necessary, it is likely that media regulator Ofcom would become involved in some capacity.

If the OFT goes ahead, it is likely Ofcom will be involved – not necessarily a comfort to ITV, Ed Richards, Ofcom, CEO recently pointed out CRR only works against ITV when it delivers poor programming.

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