Market Requirement and Political Challenges: Russia between Two Worlds
The television audience measurement (TAM) system in Russia has three main characteristics. First, Russia remains a huge, widely spread country with a variety of populations and cultures. This means that the "national" TAM system had tyo make hard choices in order to produce a "national" Russian public. Second, the Russian media model has evolved into something unique, different both from democratic media systems and from the old "totalitarian" incarnation of Soviet times. A strong authoritarian aspect has been discernible throughout the leadership of Vladimir Putin, since 2000, as have a number of neoliberal market economy practices. The short history of TAM in Russia is also related to the globalization of this particular kind of technology and knowledge. Two key players can be identified here: international advertisers, who exported the need for ratings, and the international measurement companies (today TNS), which tried to enter a new but, as we will see, encountered difficulty in this endeavour, which requires both neutrality and a balancing of conflicting interests not easily reconciled.