The group behind the YourAdChoices program on Tuesday released its implementation guidelines for how digital marketers should implement the "Political Ad" disclosure icon first unveiled in May.
The Digital Advertising Alliance’s creative specifications are for the new icon that, when clicked on, will reveal details like the name of the political advertiser, its key leadership and the organization’s contact information, in addition to other information required by applicable federal or state law and a link to a government database of contributions and expenditures for the advertiser, if applicable.
The icon will also reveal any disclaimers required by state or federal law, if the ad itself is too small to display them.
Consultants have expressed unease about the cascade of digital regulation, including new state laws in Washington state and Maryland. In its announcement, the DAA singled out Maryland for being “the first state to authorize this type of approach for political advertising disclosure in digital and mobile ads.”
“The Maryland State Board of Elections voted during an August 23 meeting to allow covered political entities to use a Political Ad-type icon in small ads that links to disclosures mandated by Maryland, including the authority line and other required information.”
The DAA noted that “other regulatory bodies” are exploring similar regulations. Michael Signorelli, counsel for DAA, told C&E that digital consultants shouldn’t sweat the new icon’s reporting requirements.
"The DAA's PoliticalAds program was designed to minimize and simplify the reporting requirements for political advertisers by creating a single national standard backed by all of the major advertising trade associations, so it can be implemented seamlessly across platforms and ad tech providers,” Signorelli said.
“In fact, Maryland has become a proof point for the PoliticalAds approach by recently voting to support a Political Ad-type icon as a way to fulfill the state's new reporting requirements. By using the DAA's successful YourAdChoices program as a model, Political Ads extends that program's best practices for an ad-based disclosure icon that is easy to implement for advertisers and easy to understand for voters.”
Compliance with the DAA’s guidance will be independently enforced by the Advertising Self-Regulatory Council (ASRC) of the Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB) and DMA, a division of the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), which also are responsible for enforcement of the YourAdChoices program.