NDTV hits back at WPP

As far as the future of the dispute goes, it looks like it is over to the courts. And the tone of the two statements, WPP's of yesterday and NDTV's of today, promise an engrossing battle ahead.

FP Editors December 20, 2014 11:28:01 IST
NDTV hits back at WPP

Yesterday, WPP issued a statement on the NDTV-TAM fracas, calling the suit a 'hypothetical suit', adding that no suit had been served on WPP or WPP operating company.

Today, NDTV issued a statement that service was made on the August 10, 2012 in New York, and processes under the Hague Convention are also underway as is the normal procedure. Additionally, says the statement, lawyers for Kantar Media Research (UK) have already confirmed to NDTV that the service on his client was acceptable in New York.

NDTV hits back at WPP

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NDTV statement said, "It is indeed strange that WPP terms the suit as hypothetical, as it is available for everyone to read in full on the website of the Supreme Court of New York. In fact it appears as though WPP must have read it too as they refer to many details in the NDTV complaint and respond with several false denials."

"In fact, matters have progressed much beyond 'service'; the lawyers for Nielsen have been in touch with our lawyers and have requested for an extension. In addition, the CEO of Kantar has been in touch with us and has acknowledged receiving the complaint. NDTV has affidavits to substantiate this," said the statement.

NDTV takes a pot-shot at WPP, punning on the word 'fixing' (alleged fixing of television ratings forms the backbone of the NDTV complaint).

"We suggest WPP refrain from using their massive PR machine to make baseless threats against NDTV. Instead we request that WPP should focus on honestly fixing (for want of a better word!) their badly damaged and dishonest ratings system in India - which in their Statement they acknowledge they have control over and is their responsibility. While many may attribute sinister motives to WPP's Statement which is full of factual and legal errors, NDTV would give them the benefit of the doubt and assume WPP has made a silly error which simple cross-checking through their internal systems will soon correct. If all else fails, for details of the complaint we suggest they visit the Supreme Court of New York's website where the "non-hypothetical" complaint is detailed in full," the statement added.

NDTV's statement is certainly baffling. How could WPP have issued a statement yesterday while NDTV, today, confirms that service had been effected on August 10 and that Kantar Media's CEO has acknowledged receipt of the complaint? As far as the future of the dispute goes, it looks like it is over to the courts. And the tone of the two statements, WPP's of yesterday and NDTV's of today, promise an engrossing battle ahead.

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