JIC Clarifies Role Vis A Vis MRC, Unveils Streaming Certification Program

Following months of discussions with the Media Rating Council (MRC), the U.S. Joint Industry Committee (JIC) this morning issued a statement clarifying the roles of the two standards-setting organizations.

The statement, which can be read here, essentially says the JIC is responsible for certifying advertising currencies for "transactional readiness," while the MRC is responsible for auditing and accrediting audience measurement methodologies.

The statement also seeks to clarify some blurry lines that have emerged between the JIC's and the MRC's roles, explaining that the two processes are intended to work in tandem -- not in competition -- with each other.

The statement includes a quote from MRC Executive Director and CEO George Ivie, and lists members including major agencies, the Video Advertising Bureau, and the major TV-centric companies (excluding Disney) that are owners of OpenAP, the joint venture that organized the JIC and was named MediaPost's "Supplier of the Year" for 2023 for accomplishing it.

Unlike previous statements, this morning's release also excludes the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), which previously was described as representing the voice of advertisers in and/or coordinating with the JIC.

The absence of any direct advertiser inclusion in the U.S. JIC is one of the notable differences between it and the way other long-established JICs function in the rest of the world.

Normally, JICs are tripartite, including equal votes by advertisers, agencies and media suppliers in decisions to define, design and source audience-measurement methodologies and market currencies.

Another significant change in this morning's statement is the revision of an important baseline requirement for audience-measurement suppliers seeking JIC currency certification.

Originally, the requirement stated that currency suppliers "should" see MRC accreditation, but the revised wording states they should "be in active audit with the MRC."

The statement also reveals details of a new certification process added by the JIC that will assess, review and certify streaming data services that might be used as subcomponents of national cross-platform currencies seeking or granted JIC certifications.

The JIC has not released the baseline requirements for that "Streaming Data Certification Program," but is working on it and plans to do so soon.

2 comments about "JIC Clarifies Role Vis A Vis MRC, Unveils Streaming Certification Program".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, March 27, 2024 at 9:51 a.m.

    As suggested by your report, Joe, the "JIC" seems to have either dumped the ANA ---or lost its support-----which is a significant development---if true. It wouldn't surprise me if the ANA agrees with the recent 4A's take on the practicality of "alternative currencies" and the chaos that would ensue if there was not a single, audience based standard. Also, it is not clear how the "JIC" will "collaborate" with the MRC if the latter is not invited to audit the "certified" alternative currencies---or, worse, if an audit is started and the alternative currency suplier fails to pass muster. What then?

  2. John Grono from GAP Research, March 27, 2024 at 11:18 p.m.

    IMHO that it is very odd that the statements excluded the ANA.

    When you think about it, the vast majority of the media income is provided by the marketers in entities such as ANA members.   But if the ANA was not incldued by the media business groups, it would be akin to a marketer trying to sell a product that no-one wants to buy.   And we all know how that scenario ends up.

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