In a world first the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) are announcing, alongside the largest companies in the digital advertising supply chain, a pilot to extend our role online. Under the title of ‘Intermediary and Platform Principles’, the pilot will explore formalising and bringing more accountability and transparency to the role that these companies play in helping to uphold the UK’s world-leading system of advertising regulation.
The initiative is the result of collaboration between the ASA and members of Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB UK) including Adform, Amazon Ads, Google, Index Exchange, Meta, TikTok, Twitter and Yahoo. It will pilot a set of principles covering how participating companies raise advertisers’ awareness of the rules that apply to their ads online and help the ASA to secure compliance in cases when an advertiser appears unwilling or is unable to comply with the rules. The pilot will run for one year from June 2022.
As part of the pilot, participating companies – including online platforms, demand-side platforms and supply-side platforms – voluntarily agree to provide information to the ASA to demonstrate how they operate in accordance with the pilot’s principles. The ASA will use this information, and other intelligence collected throughout the reporting period, to publish an aggregated interim report and a final report. This will provide an independent account of how companies have performed against the principles – with an understanding that different companies can meet the principles in different ways – to identify examples of good practice, as well as areas where the ASA identify room for improvement.
The information gathered as part of the pilot will provide valuable evidence to help ASA, the industry and other stakeholders to collectively consider whether and where gaps exist in their ability to enforce the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) Code online, and how this can effectively be addressed.
Commenting on the initiative, Guy Parker, Chief Executive of the ASA said: “The role that leading digital companies play to uphold advertising standards online and help deliver better outcomes for the public is not well-known or understood. This pilot brings more accountability and transparency to this area of our work and serves as an important contribution to future policy thinking in this area”.
Jon Mew, CEO of IAB UK added: “Creating more transparency and accountability within digital advertising is in all of our best interests and it’s really positive to see our members proactively volunteering to be part of the pilot and demonstrate their commitment to the regulatory system. It’s no secret that the most effective regulatory measures are developed with the co-operation and input of the industry, and based on robust evidence, and we believe that this pilot will set an example of how that can best be achieved.”
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