Letters, Jan. 19, 2009

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Best Practices Needed for Data Use

Michael Learmonth's article ("As Tracking Proliferates, Web Publishers Are Left Out," AdAge.com, January 5) raised questions around publishers' perceptions of how data are used by advertising networks. Leading networks, including Platform-A and 24/7 Real Media, have implemented specific policies that ensure consumer data from publisher sites are only used with the explicit consent of the publisher. We believe it is important that all networks adopt similar policies, and that we establish clear standards in our industry that protect and respect the value of publisher data.

We recently were asked by the IAB to lead a committee charged with developing standards for and creating accountability by ad networks and exchanges to their advertiser, agency and publisher constituents. As co-chairs of the IAB Committee on Networks and Exchanges, we intend to listen and respond to the concerns of publishers, showcase what we have adopted within our own companies, and establish a series of best practices for ad networks and exchanges.

Our work already has begun, and we expect that, when it is finished, it will result in industry agreement on acceptable best practices for ad networks and exchanges. We strongly believe that the interactive ecosystem can and must grow together -- that networks will succeed by serving advertisers, agencies and publishers together; and that publishers can grow their businesses by utilizing network resources appropriately.

We thank the IAB for taking an active interest in the importance of this issue, and we look forward to introducing the advertising community to our recommended practices.

Lynda Clarizio

David Moore
Chairman and Founder
24/7 Real Media
New York

Negative review not appreciated

RE: "I Hate You, 'American Idol!' You've Ruined Everything!" (Ad Age, Jan. 12). I think I join many of Ad Age's sometime/former readers in my distaste for your continued negativity and general anti-advertising, anti-media stance. Good luck with your increasingly irrelevant positioning on your road to oblivion.
Jon Nesvig
Fox Broadcasting
New York

Wow. Got your message loud and clear.

Don't agree with you though. Nor do the millions of viewers watching "American Idol" or it wouldn't be back on-air and wouldn't keep earning fantastic ratings.

Must be tough being in the minority on something, but bully for you having a medium where you can rant about something YOU hate!

Dorothy Lancaster
Maspeth, N.Y.

Study leaves out important numbers

RE: "Google Leads in Ad-Serving Share" (AdAge.com, Dec. 22, 2008). The Attributor study that prompted the article was a solid effort to make sense of the market, but failed to account for a significant portion of the ad-serving market that should have been recognized as a major caveat to the accuracy of its findings.

The problem is that the report only seems to count ad-serving companies placing advertising calls from a single domain, or from domains that Attributor can directly monitor. As a result, ad-serving leaders such as 24/7 Real Media that solely use first-party domains, and thus help maintain the integrity of publisher data, are not counted.

This is not a small portion of the market: 24/7 Real Media's publisher clients serve billions of impressions per month, and we're only one of many companies whose clients use first-party domains. Additionally, our media network serves over 18 billion impressions per month in North America alone. None of these impressions seem to be accounted for in the Attributor study.

I recognize that measuring an industry as large and far-reaching as ad serving is a difficult undertaking.

We certainly appreciate Attributor's efforts and look forward to working with them to help make future reports more accurate. But presenting the results of this particular study as fact undermines your readers' ability to fully understand the market, and I would just ask that future articles about ad-serving market share take this into account.

Nicolle Pangis
VP-Product Management Global Media & Technology
24/7 Real Media
New York


RE: "In the News" (AA, P. 3, Jan. 12). The briefs item stated that Ogilvy & Mather cut nearly 10% of its North American staff. According to the company, it cut only 5%.

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