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Ad Industry Committed to Strong Self-Regulation and Development of Privacy Guides for Online Behavioral Advertising

NEW YORK, NY, (February 12, 2009) - Four leading marketing and advertising industry associations stated their continuing commitment to work together to develop a cross sector set of privacy principles for online behavioral advertising in order to respond to the challenge issued today by the Federal Trade Commission for comprehensive industry self regulation. The cross-industry group represents the first time the entire marketing and media industry has come together to develop a cohesive and far-reaching self-regulatory effort for interactive advertising. The associations are the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A's), the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). The Council of Better Business Bureaus (BBB), a leading organization dedicated to advancing marketplace trust, is also part of the effort.

The joint industry task force supports the FTC's goal of a comprehensive and effective self-regulatory program that protects both consumers and businesses engaged in interactive advertising. The group will continue its engagement with policymakers, a broad cross section of businesses, consumers, and other important stakeholders as it evaluates important public policy issues that have been raised regarding online behavioral advertising. The associations look forward to reviewing the current FTC principles released today, having already launched proactive efforts in areas of self-regulation set forth in the FTC's initial self-regulatory principles issued in December 2007, including education and transparency, consumer notification and choice, data security, and self-regulatory enforcement.

The members of these associations, along with other participants of the group, together represent thousands of advertisers, agencies, marketers, publishers, media companies, ad networks, and other service providers, including the major participants in the online advertising marketplace. The associations have come together to address concerns about the use of online consumer data for behavioral advertising purposes while preserving the innovative and robust advertising that supports the vast array of free online content available to consumers, and what has become an important and growing industry for the U.S. economy. The group collectively recognizes the importance and responsibility of effective self-regulation in the evolving area of online and behavioral marketing and applauds the FTC's continued commitment to industry self regulation.

Press Contacts:

Mike Zaneis
Vice President Public Policy, IAB

Marla Aaron
Marketing Communications Director, IAB

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