The self-regulatory organization Trustworthy Accountability Group, which recently merged with the UK's Joint Industry Committee for Web Standards, has rolled out a new, global brand-safety certification program.
The new program incorporates elements of TAG's inventory quality guidelines program and JICWEBS' Digital Trading Standards Group -- according to CEO Mike Zaneis.
Notably, the companies that obtain the seal will have to undergo audits by independent parties -- such as the ABC Audit Bureau of Circulation in the UK, and BPA Worldwide in the U.S. -- in order to receive the certification.
The auditors will examine whether companies are following TAG's guidelines for brand safety.
Among other requirements, the guidelines mandate that companies have a system to identify “unsafe” inventory -- like sites devoted to piracy -- and “safe inventory, as well as safe and unsafe domains and apps."
Many companies in the online ecosystem use outside vendors to identify safe or unsafe inventory, Zaneis says.
But, Zaneis adds, “there's no one right way to do it.”
At launch, 112 companies have obtained TAG brand-safety certifications. Thirty-one of those companies have certified their global operations.
Companies that have received the seal include Amazon Advertising, Facebook, Google, GroupM, Havas, Kroger, Omnicom Media Group, Samsung Ads, Sky Ltd., Thomson Reuters, TripAdvisor, Twitter, and Walmart.