GroupM adopts anti-piracy digital policy

WPP's parent company has designed a new digital media buying policy to prevent clients' ads from appearing on sites which distribute illegally obtained content.

Global media investment management operation GroupM, the parent company for WPP media agencies, including MediaCom and Mindshare, has launched an anti-piracy initiative for digital media buys.

John Montgomery, chief operating officer, GroupM Interaction tells MiC while GroupM has never consciously placed advertising on sites which distribute illegally obtained content, with ad networks like Google AdWords distributing ads it’s sometimes difficult to fully prevent.

Beginning immediately, anti-piracy language will be built into all insertion orders which prohibit vendors from placing GroupM clients’ advertising on sites which distribute illegally distributed content, says Montgomery.

In conjunction with the new policy, GroupM has created a list of more than 2,000 US-based sites which have been identified as containing or supporting pirated content.

The discussion for implementing the policy, which prevents ads placed by GroupM companies from appearing on such sites came from a discussion on the importance of data, says Montgomery.

“We have been very active in the area of using data for targeting purposes and for making advertising more effective,” he says. “We are very conscious of using that data more effectively for consumers. In that discussion, piracy came up and how the piracy sites are funded, they would have to be funded by long tail ads rather than direct ones. Then got into the discussion of making sure we had technology so our clients’ ads didn’t appear on those sites.”