ANA urges members to comply with self-regulatory privacy program

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New York—With possible federal regulation of behaviorally targeted advertising looming, the Association of National Advertisers is urging its 400 member companies to “fully embrace” the self-regulatory program that it and a group of other marketing associations have undertaken.

To facilitate compliance, the ANA distributed a toolkit that provides members with an explanation of the program, as well as details on how to meet and implement terms of the effort.

The industry's self-regulatory program urges advertisers to insert a distinctive icon within each targeted ad to alert a viewer as to why they are seeing it, and to give them the opportunity to opt out of future viewings. It is mandatory for all members of the Direct Marketing Association, but is not yet required of members of ANA, nor of other participants that helped develop the program, including the American Advertising Federation, the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Interactive Advertising Bureau.

Last month, the Federal Trade Commission issued recommendations calling for a universal do not track feature as part of all Internet browsers, and for a national do not call registry similar to the current National Do Not Call Registry regulating telemarketing.

The marketing and advertising industry is hoping its current program of self-regulation will stave off governmental regulation of behaviorally targeted advertising on the Internet.

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