April 1, 2009 ó With the recent release of the Federal Trade Commissionís (FTC) much-anticipated report describing its examination of online behavioral advertising and proposed principles for self-regulation in this area, much public attention has turned to behavioral advertising on the Internet.
The FTC report clarifies the Commissionís previously released privacy principles, and continues to support a self-regulatory approach to online behavioral advertising.
While the report explores the potential benefits that online behavioral advertising offers consumers, it also examines privacy concerns regarding this practice. The report attempts to balance these two viewpoints by encouraging privacy protections, while also acknowledging the importance of maintaining and preserving an open and competitive marketplace.
The FTC report concludes that it is not necessary to include first-party behavioral and contextual advertising within the scope of the principles addressed in the report, due to the fact that there are fewer privacy concerns associated with these advertising methods.
DMA recognizes that the Internet is a significant and vital avenue for commerce, particularly in the current economic climate. Accordingly, DMA encourages the government not to allow its drive for regulation to interfere with the Internetís ability to stimulate, strengthen, and expand commerce ó particularly e-commerce ó and to help the economy to emerge all the stronger from the current recession.
In response to FTC calls for industry self-regulation, DMA has actively launched efforts in conjunction with the American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA), the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), and the Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB) to develop a cross-section of privacy principles for online behavioral advertising.
The group continues to advance its work, and aims to have principles established in the near future. Once the group principles are set, DMA looks forward to working within its committees to update DMAís Guidelines for Ethical Business Practice, as appropriate.
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