Facebook reaches out to local ad execs over transparency scandal

Sarah Homewood
By Sarah Homewood | 4 October 2016
Credit: Facebook Media Centre

Facebook's Australian managing director has reached out to local advertising executives to assure the market that its doors are always open when it comes to tackling issues of transparency, in the wake of the news that the social giant misreported video views.

The Australian is reporting that Stephen Scheeler sent an e-mail to several executives last week to tackle the issue head on after it emerged that Facebook had been over-inflating video view metrics for around two years.

“Transparency in measurement is core to the value Facebook and all media drive for advertisers, and I want to be sure our doors remain open, and that the interests of advertisers are protected,” Scheeler wrote in the email obtained by The Australian.

He also outlined that this misstep could be seen as a “turning point in promoting the value of effective advertising in Australia.”

This comes as the Association of National Advertisers’ CEO, Bob Liodice, called on Facebook to have its metrics audited and accredited by a third party, citing the Media Rating Council or the IAB as offerings that could undertake the audit.

In a blog post Liodice says that while the ANA understands “mistakes do happen,” it also believes that Facebook has not yet achieved the level of measurement transparency that marketers need and require.

“With more than $6 billion of marketers’ media being directed to Facebook, we believe that it is time for them – and other such major media players – to be audited and accredited. That is the standard of accepted practice that marketers and agencies have relied on for decades,” Liodice added.

It should be noted however that Facebook does have deals in place with certain third-party providers, such as its deal with Moat to guarantee that its impressions are 100% viewable.

Speaking with AdNews last week Jason Tonelli, chief digital and technology officer at Publicis Media, shared similar concerns about players such as Facebook not allowing third party measurement into its platform.

“Our broader concern is that publishers do not act to allow us to use our third party partners to impartially assess the results of campaigns – we are really looking for our partners to join us on this journey to allow us to make the best decisions for our clients and in turn their customers.

“Facebook is not the only publisher that approaches measurement this way. We are focused on working with all publishers to provide our clients with third-party tracking of all campaigns so that we can impartially assess campaign results and make the most informed real time decisions to drive better campaign results for clients,” he added.

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