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BizReport : Law & Regulation : May 27, 2010

IAB wants pan-EU support before labeling behaviorally targeted ads

After an investigation into the use of behavioral data for tailored online ads and pricing, the U.K.'s Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is trying to hurry through a method of identifying such ads to consumers.

by Helen Leggatt

Today the OFT released a market study setting out its current views on behavioral advertising and targeted pricing practices.

As far as the OFT is concerned online ads that are displayed to users based on their browsing behavior should be identified as such by the use of an industry-standard "badge".

However, the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) in Britain won't be rushed into rolling out a U.K.-only solution and would prefer to wait for pan-EU support before any action is taken.

Speaking with OUT-LAW.COM, Nick Stringer, director of regulatory affairs for the IAB in the U.K. said, "We are not going to do this at a U.K. level, it will be done at an EU level. Doing this just in the U.K., rushing ahead, makes no sense at all. The first starting point is at the E.U. level, meaning that if it happens there it will happen at the U.K. level."

The OFT's full report on the online targeting of ads and pricing can be found online.

Tags: behavioral ad targeting, online advertising, targeted advertising, U.K

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