Following a six-month long enquiry into the UK advertising industry, the House of Lords has recommended that digital industry bodies must be given more power to enforce rules on robust standards or face government legislation.
This instruction (below) about taking greater steps to self-regulation through the likes of JICWEBS, was one of 30 recommendations by the House of Lords’ Select Committee on Communications.
“It is in the interests of the whole industry to take greater steps to self-regulate through independent third parties such as JICWEBS. We think that the largest industry bodies should commit to signing up fully to JICWEBS. We recommend that the industry should give these bodies greater powers to create and enforce rules establishing robust industry standards on measuring effectiveness and third-party verification. If businesses fail to do so, the Government should propose legislation to regulate digital advertising."
House of Lords, Select Committee on Communications, 1st Report of Session 2017–19, UK advertising in a digital age.
The recommendation aligns with a number of self-regulatory steps already taken by various trade bodies involving JICWEBS initiatives, such as ISBA’s new media services framework, the IAB’s Gold Standard, the AOP’s Ad Quality Charter and the IPA’s recent call to action through trading partners.
Currently, there are almost 100 signatories to JICWEBS’s standards with 77 certifications awarded across brand safety and anti-fraud.
Representing advertisers, ISBA’s Director General Phil Smith said: "Brand safety is a major concern for our members and we support any action that improves the environment where they advertise. We believe that signing up to JICWEBS indicates a company’s commitment to raising digital standards and expect more organisations to take this important step."
Paul Bainsfair, Director General of the IPA said: "We very much welcome the committee’s recommendation that the industry should take greater steps to self-regulate through independent bodies such as JICWEBS and their acknowledgment of the hard work being done through our cross-industry work with JICWEBS to tackle brand safety and fraud. Every company working in the digital advertising space should look to get JICWEBS certification or ask when the companies they are working with have been certified."