The industry's Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) is rolling out a new certification program that aims to provide advertisers with detailed metrics about online campaigns.
The “Certified for Transparency” program relies on log files submitted by publishers, ad-tech intermediaries (demand-side platforms and supply-side platforms) and verification companies (businesses that vet publishers' sites for brand-safety issues).
Those log files are fed into a platform that enables advertisers to access a dashboard that reveals how much money intermediaries garnered for their role in the online ad ecosystem, as well as which publishers' sites ran the ad. The dashboard will also give advertisers information about brand-safety issues on publishers' sites.
The fee for advertisers to participate will be between 1 and 2% of the ad budget they track through the platform.
Publishers, intermediaries and verification companies that submit log files will not be charged for the seal. In addition to submitting logs, sellers and intermediaries will have to employ Ads.txt and App-Ads.txt system (standards that aim to combat ad fraud), while intermediaries will have to employ the anti-fraud standard Sellers.json.
The new transparency program is the fourth certification program the organization has rolled out. The others deal with malware, fraud and brand safety.
The Trustworthy Accountability Group did a beta pilot of the program in the UK two years ago, according to CEO Mike Zaneis.
Seven advertisers and a dozen agencies participated in that program. Zaneis adds that the organization is currently working with around two dozen companies to build up the program.