New Rules, New Transparency and perhaps, a New Kind of Internet
Is this goodbye to online ads?
New Bill would change the industry
Having your message land in front of the eyes of your intended audience is the goal of every marketer. And as algorithms have developed, becoming more and more intelligent, specific and available, reaching this goal has never been easier.
However, flip the perspective, and this has not been welcome news to consumers. Many people resent this ability and willingness of brands to pinpoint them, which has, unsurprisingly, resulted in an antitrust movement aimed at personal privacy rights. This movement has brought up new reforms in the ad industry, and more specifically, in the digital advertising world.
One of these reforms is a game-changing new bill put forward by Democrats which, if enacted, would effectively ban online surveillance advertising. This means when it comes to the big players such as Google, Facebook or dozens of other brokers who secure data on consumers for long periods of time, they would no longer be allowed to use digital ad targeting. It’s called The Banning Surveillance Advertising Act which would halt all digitally targeted advertising with the exception of “broad” location targeting. The Senators backing this bill are Anna Eshoo, representative for Democrat California, Cory Booker, Democrat New Jersey, and Jan Schakowsky, Democrat Illinois. This bill allows consumers to sue the platforms directly if they break the rules, permitting them a maximum of $5,000 in damages which is enforced by the Federal Trade Commission.
Google has also been fighting an antitrust lawsuit since 2020 in which Google and Facebook were accused of illegal conspiracy. This conspiracy is filed under the 1st section of the Sherman Act which makes it illegal for two or more companies to make any contract or agreement “in restraint of trade.” Now, Google is also allegedly marking up the minimum prices for ad impressions. To make it simple, Google is allegedly using advertisers’ past bids to squeeze more money out of them. The lawsuit questions Google on whose benefit is it working for as neither the publisher nor the consumer gain any benefit.
At any rate, big tech is under more scrutiny than ever before. What kind of traction the proposed anti-surveillance bill gains remains to be seen, but one thing is sure. It represents a gargantuan shift in thinking about user privacy and the ad-fueled web. There is a growing sense that the digital world must take a pause and decide what direction in will head in next. And with that will surely come new rules, new transparency and perhaps, a new kind of internet.
Help us Help You. Subscribe to the only Independent Voice for OOH. Keep unconstrained speech for the Billboard Industry