The World: Dublin - Sky and Viacom launch Irish services after complaints

Sky Sports 1 and 2 and Viacom's MTV and Nickelodeon channels are launching dedicated Irish services. The moves were delayed by months of complaints by the companies regarding charges for access to Nielsen ratings.

The ratings, which cost 140,000 euros per annum regardless of market share, are essential if the channels are to win Irish advertising revenue.

Sky is set to become the biggest single contributor to research in Ireland, with a bill of more than 500,000 euros for its two sports channels and Sky One and Sky News. Despite an audience share of 45 per cent, RTE pays 300,000 euros.

There is little sympathy for the London-based channels in Ireland, with a feeling among indigenous broadcasters that the channels are merely supplying UK output with Irish ads.