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WAN-IFRA joins Audience Measurement Coalition

WAN-IFRA, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, joins forces with a group of leading associations representing the audience measurement ecosystem to support the European Union in its efforts to reform the ePrivacy Directive.

Author: News Desk

Posted on: 14 July 2017 08:20

WAN-IFRA joins Audience Measurement Coalition

Gerald Grünberger: "An independent press that serves Europe’s public interest must be able to compete effectively with its global competitors."

The Coalition for Audience Measurement is composed of global and European associations representing the interests of stakeholders that use audience measurement to help finance news media offers to the public.

“In the digital age, our business models require the transparent and secure use of data. An independent press that serves Europe’s public interest must be able to compete effectively with its global competitors. Audience measurement is an essential tool for the industry,” said Gerald Grünberger, Chair of WAN-IFRA’s Member Associations Directors Committee.

Audience measurement is a vital tool for media companies to analyse traffic flows and content performance, says WAN-IFRA. The coalition sets out to inform lawmakers about the functions of audience measurement and the value it brings to society. Specifically, without those measurements, media organisations would not be able to prove their comparative value to their partners, and advertisers would be prevented from measuring the effectiveness of their ad placements. If news media companies cannot reliably track the performance of their websites, their capacity to secure revenues to finance their online operations will be seriously hampered.

The first statement of the Coalition focuses on the distinction between first- and third-party audience measurements in the current proposal for an ePrivacy regulation. The former is the object of an exemption from burdensome user consent obligations, the latter is not. Only a few, mainly US-based, service providers can offer a first-party service, and thus benefit from the exemption, while most service providers and news media instead use trusted third-party suppliers to provide audience measurements on their behalf.

According to WAN-IFRA, if the text is not changed to extend the exemption to third parties, end users will be faced with incessant requests for consent when visiting news media websites, the accuracy of measurements will be greatly diminished, and the value of the websites will be difficult to prove to partners and investors.

The Coalition for Audience Measurement will likely continue its work throughout the negotiations to adopt a new ePrivacy Regulation. The full list of members, a more detailed analysis, and the statement can be found here.

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