Monday, July 9, 2018

Tampa Radio: Bubba Expresses 'Deep Regrets'

Bubba Clem
Tampa-based radio personality Bubba The Love Sponge Clem said he deeply regrets interfering with Nielsen’s collection of listening data, and that he will not engage in similar conduct in the future.

According to The Tampa Business Journal, Clem also agreed to make an undisclosed financial payment to Nielsen, according to a statement from the telecommunications rating firm announcing a settlement with the nationally syndicated radio host.

The settlement, disclosed on July 6, ends a legal battle that began in 2015, when Nielsen Audio filed a lawsuit in federal court in Tampa against Clem and Bubba Radio Network Inc. Nielsen’s lawsuit alleged that Clem was in contact with a Nielsen panelist and that Clem offered to pay the listener to manipulate the monitoring that Nielsen uses to determine ratings. Nielsen, which was seeking $1 million in damages, said it filed the lawsuit to safeguard the impartiality of the company’s audio estimates and to protect the integrity of its ratings process.

The case was set to go to trial July 23 in Tampa, but a one-page order from United States District Judge James Whittemore late Friday said the court was advised that the case was settled.

As part of the settlement, Clem admitted that prior to the lawsuit he had not previously disclosed all contacts with Nielsen panelists, according to the Nielsen statement. In addition, Clem disclosed that he is not presently in contact with any Nielsen panelist, he promised to never knowingly communicate with any active Nielsen panelist in the future and agreed to immediately notify Nielsen of any future contact with Nielsen's active panelists, the Nielsen statement said.

Any future infractions by Clem will be punishable by a court-ordered injunction and additional financial damages payable to Nielsen, the statement said.

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