Committing To Quality and Accountability Through Shared Principles for Programmatic

By Tim Cadogan in Brands & Agencies, Publishers|October 17, 2018

Earlier today, many of the industry’s leading sell-side exchanges released a joint statement of principles designed to ensure quality, reduce friction and clearly lay out rules for fair marketplaces in a way that will increase value for buyers and sellers.

The CEOs of each of these companies have pledged their commitment to a standardized set of principles for the future of programmatic advertising.  

When leveraged fully, programmatic advertising is a powerful tool that enables extremely precise, data-driven advertising at scale. Yet, it has not reached its full potential because it has been too complex and at times too opaque.

At OpenX, we believe without reservation that advertisers, publishers, and their representatives need and deserve transparent marketplace principles, and the rules and standards laid out in the open letter are the result of a collective effort designed to solve some of the biggest issues we see today and to maximize participation in programmatic advertising for all.

Our hope is that these new programmatic principles will serve as a foundation for advertisers, agencies, DSPs, publishers and app developers to use when evaluating partners. As we aim to ensure an efficient, transparent and fair marketplace for all participants, these rules and standards can be viewed as the table stakes necessary to do business in a robust and mature digital advertising market.

By establishing a single set of rules that our collective industry has agreed to follow, it will be far more efficient for marketers and publishers to hold their supply chain partners accountable, and have confidence they are participating in a fair marketplace where everyone is playing by the same rules.  

The standards detailed in the letter are designed to be verifiable and concrete, and are constructed around the 3 fundamental principles foundational to all effective markets: efficiency, transparency and fairness.

Over the coming weeks and months, our industry association TAG (Trustworthy Accountability Group) will take the principles and develop a new global certification process enabling brands, agencies and publishers to validate compliance.

I am pleased to share that OpenX is already fully compliant with every principle laid out in the open letter, and we will be working closely with TAG to earn third party certification once the specific enforcement and verification rubric has been developed.

TAG President Mike Zaneis heralded the new principles stating, “Leading advertising exchanges coming together to develop a shared set of principles on transparency, efficiency, and fair-market values in programmatic is an incredibly important step forward for the entire advertising industry. These principles raise the bar for how exchanges operate and will ultimately make programmatic a better space for advertisers and publishers. These companies are investing in a better future for digital advertising. TAG looks forward to working with the broader industry to take these principles and develop a new certification which will ensure brands, agencies, and publishers can select partners who are committed to a fair, efficient, and transparent programmatic supply chain.”

We agree completely. Today marks a new chapter in the story of programmatic advertising.  

Even amongst competitors, there is a recognition that we need to come together to establish clear and unambiguous rules and operating standards that will give publishers and buyers confidence that they are participating in a fair and transparent marketplace. OpenX is thrilled to strengthen our commitment to quality with these standards and we remain committed to providing publishers and buyers alike complete confidence in a fair, transparent, and verifiable programmatic marketplace.