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Yahoo, AOL and DoubleClick join Microsoft in being issued brand safety seals to reduce online ad misplacement

Google’s DoubleClick, Yahoo and AOL have joined Microsoft Advertising in being awarded seals confirming they meet industry-agreed standards to protect brands’ safety online. Twenty companies have now been issued seals in the UK.


Recipients* of the seal have had their advertising misplacement policies and processes verified by an independent third party confirming that they meet standards to reduce the risk of online ads being served next to inappropriate or illegal content. A further 18 have committed to undergo independent verification within six months.

The seals have been awarded by the UK’s Joint Industry Committee for Web Standards (JICWEBS) – the independent body that defines best practice and standards for online ad trading.

As ad buying increasingly happens through automated technologies, advertisers and agencies have placed more focus on maintaining their brands’ reputation by ensuring their online ads don’t appear against inappropriate content. The seals are the culmination of an unprecedented level of cross-industry collaboration through the Digital Trading Standards Group (DTSG) to deliver a set of straightforward and workable best practice principles which meet the needs of all sides of the industry.

Bob Wootton, ISBA Director of Media & Advertising, said: “Advertisers have been calling for this type of commitment for over two and a half years so they can trust and embrace digital advertising. It’s particularly encouraging to see these web giants follow Microsoft’s lead.”

Nigel Gwilliam, IPA's Consultant Head of Digital and Emerging Technologies, said: “We are delighted these first 20 businesses have been awarded their brand safety seal – a robust demonstration of trustworthiness to buyers. With another 18 set to join them within six months, the JICWEBS/DTSG seal has become an industry standard at an unprecedented pace.”

Guy Phillipson, CEO of the IAB UK, said: “Brand safety has never been more important to marketers, especially given the rapid rise of programmatic display. The impressive number of companies committed to this initiative is testament to the industry’s willingness to respond with audited best practice.”

Tim Cain, the AOP’s Managing Director, said: “It is good to see the commitment to brand safety from the market which has to be beneficial for the development of digital brand advertising.”

Richard Foan, JICWEBS facilitator, said: “The number of companies who’ve achieved a seal or committed to independent verification has more than doubled in four months. Effective oversight byJICWEBS has delivered true cross-industry standards which deliver transparency and increase trust.”

*Seals issued to: AD2ONE,, Amnet UK, AOL (UK), Crimtan, DoubleClick Ad Exchange (Google), Exponential Interactive, IgnitionOne, InSkin Media, Media iQ Digital, Microsoft Advertising, Pulsepoint, Quantcast, RadiumOne, Rocket Fuel, Specific Media, TubeMogul Inc, Unruly, Vibrant Media, Yahoo.

JICWEBS is the UK's Joint Industry Committee for Web Standards and is made up of the following trade bodies: Association of Online Publishers (AOP), Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) UK, Newspaper Society, Newspapers Publishers Association, ISBA – the voice of British advertisers – and the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA).

About the Digital Trading Standards Group (DTSG)
The DTSG comprises representatives from the following sectors of the digital display trading ecosystem: advertisers, agencies, agency trading desks (ATDs), demand side platforms (DSPs), advertising networks, sales houses, advertising exchanges, supply side platforms (SSPs) and publishers.

Last updated 15/10/2014

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