PRAM Seeks Proposals For New System To Identify Web Users

The five-month old industry organization Partnership for Responsible Addressable Media is seeking input about potential new technologies that could replace cookies and other identifiers that are used for ad targeting.

On Thursday, the organization officially put out a call to the advertising and media industry for “addressability code,” for collaborative development.

“All proposed contributions must be operational, support the advancement of new addressability and accountability standards, and fuel commercial innovation,” the group states.

It adds that any proposals must align with “consumer privacy, equal access, and interoperability,” among other principles.

The organization launched in August with a goal of convincing Google and Apple to retreat from decisions to curb ad companies' ability to track people across websites and apps.

Ultimately, whatever identification system the industry develops through its new initiative will not function as intended, unless accepted by the major browser and platform developers.

“The solutions need to be endorsed by Chrome and Apple to work,” Bill Tucker, executive director of the organization, tells MediaPost.

Tucker says the Partnership for Responsible Addressable Media “has been engaging with Chrome throughout the process” and has had “dialogue” with Apple.

Both companies have publicly said they are preparing to limit tracking for ad purposes.

Google has said its popular Chrome browser will phase out third-party cookies by 2022.

Apple says it intends to require app developers to obtain users' express consent before accessing the “Identifier for Advertisers” -- an alphanumeric string used to track people across iPhone or iPad apps. Despite pressure from the ad industry, Apple reiterated in November that it will move forward with its plans.

The Partnership for Responsible Addressable Media's governing group includes representatives from industry organizations (including the Association of National Advertisers, American Association of Advertising Agencies, Interactive Advertising Bureau and Network Advertising Initiative), advertisers (including Ford, General Motors, IBM, Procter & Gamble and Unilever), agencies (IPG Mediabrands' UM and Publicis Media), NBC Universal and ad-tech companies (Adobe, MediaMath, The Trade Desk).

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