OpenX Cracks Down on Ad Unit Abuse

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OpenX, a leading independent advertising technology provider, announced Thursday that the company will ban from its exchange a group of video ad formats, including the 300×250 — one of the most prolific video ad units, that rank among the worst offenders of providing bad ad environments for consumers and advertisers in the industry today.

The move marks another industry-first initiative by the company to ensure the highest quality marketplace for brands, publishers and consumers.

300×250 video ads are a prime example of ads that provide a poor user experience. The 300×250 size does not match any standard video ad size and consists almost entirely of in-banner video (IBV), a video ad that is “stuffed” into a banner ad but sold as in-stream video inventory or mislabeled outstream units.

In a joint study with Pixalate, the data platform that offers a comprehensive suite of products that bring transparency to programmatic advertising, OpenX confirmed that the 300×250 video unit accounts for over 30 percent of all video sold programmatically today. The study also found that this particular video ad unit had Invalid Traffic (IVT) rates nearly a third higher than the average of all other programmatic video ad units sold today.

“Video is a rapidly growing part of the programmatic ecosystem, and as the medium matures, the industry needs to constantly stay ahead of format variations to ensure brands, publishers and consumers experience the highest quality video engagement,” said John Murphy, head of marketplace quality, OpenX. “Quality has always been a priority at OpenX, and this step confirms our conclusion that this ad unit has no place in any advertising exchange that values quality. Put simply, it is an ad unit that should be stopped in its tracks.”

According to a separate OpenX performance assessment of 300×250 video ads, the company also found that this particular ad size is 80 percent less viewable compared to all other video ad sizes and they are 98 percent less likely to be completed while visible and audible.

“Quality is a choice. Whether it is choosing to work only with TAG certified companies, or limiting ad buys to ads.txt approved partners, or, as in the case of video, choosing to work with partners that will put the interests of the entire ecosystem above short-term gain, we must expect every player in digital advertising to make quality and value central pillars of their business,” said Jason Fairchild, co-founder of OpenX.

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OpenX Announces GDPR Publisher Compliance Ahead of Schedule

OpenX, a leading global independent advertising technology provider, confirmed to MMW head of the weekend that it is one of the first advertising exchanges globally now in compliance with its publisher obligations under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) — a full four months before the May deadline.

As a free and open contribution to the ad tech community, OpenX is also making available a GDPR-ready data processing agreement (DPA) drafted in consultation with leading U.S. and EU privacy counsel.

This “open source” DPA was published today to as a resource for publishers to expedite their compliance process with other technology partners that may process the publisher’s EU personal data. OpenX is also making available other GDPR-related resources on its website, including a guide for obtaining certification under the Privacy Shield, which is an important legal mechanism for validating the transfer of EU personal data out of the EU to the U.S.

“GDPR is the single most significant regulation in the history of digital advertising,” said Doug McPherson, chief administrative officer and general counsel at OpenX. “It replaces a patchwork of EU national rules with a single regulatory framework with global reach and strict penalties for those who fail to comply. GDPR applies to every company, wherever they are located, that offers goods or services to EU citizens or receives, stores or sends personal data from any EU citizen. At OpenX, we are committed to being the highest quality and most trusted partner to the thousands of leading publishers and top brands that rely upon our exchange. We committed early on to investing significantly in GDPR compliance and in educating the industry about its implications. We have taken the extra step today to make available a data processing agreement and other resources in order to move the entire industry towards greater accountability and trust.”

According to one recent analysis, leading publishers today can have hundreds of technology partners with access to their consumer data via code on their page. Under GDPR, publishers will be responsible for ensuring regulatory compliance for data security for every single partner they allow to access their data. Failure to comply effectively could result in significant penalties — up to the greater of €20,000,000 or 4% of worldwide annual revenue.

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First Look: OpenX Mobile Business More Than Doubles In First Half of 2017

OpenX, a leading independent advertising technology provider, announced this week significant growth in its mobile business in the first half of 2017, recording 150% growth in net revenue year-over-year.

According to a statement emailed to MMW, the company also announced the release of the latest version of its mobile SDK, optimizing for video formats to enable publishers and app developers to better monetize their mobile apps with video in a high-quality, scalable environment that connects to the most respected buyers, brands and agencies worldwide.

The growth of the company’s mobile business follows a dedicated investment in building innovative solutions catered specifically to the mobile environment. More than 90% of OpenX’s top customers globally now use the OpenX Exchange to monetize both desktop and mobile inventory.

“With mobile advertising overtaking desktop spend globally, OpenX has made the right technology and team investments to grow with the industry’s expansion into mobile and cross-screen consumer engagement,” said Jason Fairchild, co-founder and chief revenue officer at OpenX. “As mobile continues to command greater consumer attention and advertiser spend, OpenX’s exchange has rapidly grown to become one of the largest mobile marketplaces in the world connecting hundreds of millions of consumers with the most trusted and respected brands.”

Long-standing publisher and mobile app developer partnerships fueled rapid growth for the company’s mobile business in the first half of 2017 and spurred significant adoption of its mobile SDK which initially launched in August. In just the first ten weeks of general availability more than 100 premium mobile apps have integrated the SDK. Following strong early adoption and the opportunity to increase demand for high value video ad units, OpenX today announced the SDK is now video-optimized to provide publishers and app developers with the ability to leverage interstitial video formats in their monetization strategy.

“Mobile video is poised for explosive growth in 2018, continuing to grow in popularity among advertisers because of its unique position at the intersection of quality and user experience – a position where OpenX thrives,” said Maggie Mesa, vice president of mobile business development at OpenX. “Consumers viewing mobile, and specifically in-app video content, offer a unique opportunity for brands to drive powerful engagement and for publishers and app developers to drive increased revenue. OpenX’s high quality global mobile exchange is perfectly positioned to support both buyers and sellers in this valuable environment.”

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