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IAB tackles digital ad issues

News, 13 August 2015

LONDON: The Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) UK believes that pressing issues such as viewability and ad fraud can quickly become simple "hygiene factors" if all parties involved follow industry guidelines.

"The increasing role of data and automated technologies in the online ad trading process means ad verification – be it viewability, ad fraud or brand safety – and privacy, has rightly come under increasing scrutiny," said Guy Phillipson, IAB UK's chief executive officer.

"However, it's time to turn up the volume on the solid progress we're making in tackling these issues in collaboration with partner trade bodies – domestically and overseas – and technology vendors," he declared.

Accordingly, the industry body intends to release a series of statements in coming days to clarify its position on a number of ad verification and consumer-led issues, setting out a concise industry position, the direction for each challenge and demonstrating how they are being tackled.

"I'm confident that in 12 months' time issues such as viewability, ad fraud and brand safety will be simple, straightforward hygiene factors for display advertising," Phillipson stated, "as long as all those in the industry follow guidelines set by groups such as the Joint Industry Committee for Web Standards and the Digital Trading Standards Group."

He appealed for people to work together and not to sit on the sidelines complaining: "We're all in it together – it's not just an IAB problem, these are shared issues on what is a global platform."

It is also the fastest-growing ad medium in the UK – digital advertising was worth £7.2bn in 2014, up 14% year-on-year, and now accounts for around 39% of the total UK ad market.

The "IAB Believes" initiative will cover five issues where digital advertising has come in for mounting criticism. In addition to viewability, ad fraud and brand safety, it will also address ad blocking and privacy.

Data sourced from IAB UK; additional content by Warc staff