DMA Joins Coalition in Responding to FTC's Proposed Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising
April 9, 2008 — The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) has joined a coalition of leading trade associations representing the advertising, marketing, financial services, retail, and Internet industries in filing a joint comment to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on its proposed self-regulatory principles for online behavioral advertising.
“As with any marketing channel, advertising not only supplies the lifeblood for the Internet as we know it, but it also supports innovation and free content that the world enjoys and has come to expect,” said DMA President & CEO John A. Greco, Jr. “It is imperative that this channel remains open and accepted by consumers, and that is why DMA is proud to have helped gather this group, which will continue to create viable self-regulatory standards so that both the Internet and our economy may grow.”
In addition to DMA, the associations represented in the coalition are the American Advertising Federation; American Association of Advertising Agencies; Association of National Advertisers; Consumer Bankers Association; Electronic Retailing Association; Interactive Advertising Bureau; Magazine Publishers of America; National Retail Federation; Retail Industry Leaders Association; and the US Chamber of Commerce.
While affirming its collective belief that self-regulation and leading business practices comprise the most effective framework to protect consumers and further innovation in the area of privacy and behavioral advertising, the coalition cited three shortcomings to the FTC’s proposed principles.
· First, the coalition stated, self-regulation should be developed by the businesses to which the standards would apply, rather than imposed by the government.
· Second, the coalition cited that, as part of the harm evaluation and analysis, any self-regulatory framework should carefully balance restrictions on the use of information with the significant benefits that such uses of information provide to consumers.
· Third, the coalition noted that the FTC does not examine how its proposed self-regulatory principles relate to, or have evolved from, prior guidance in related areas, including the Fair Information Practices and the Commission’s Online Profiling Report to the Congress.
The coalition will continue to review, monitor, and, if needed, expand their own extensive self-regulatory principles. It also will participate with the FTC on any future steps if the Commission deems them necessary.
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