2019 in Review: A message from IAB Canada President, Sonia Carreno


Dear IAB Canada Members,

It is hard to believe another year has passed, and what a year it has been!

As 2019 comes to a close, I would like to take a moment to reflect on some of the major developments we covered this year and take a look at what lies ahead for the industry in 2020.

2019 represented the first full year where international privacy regulation, stemming from Europe’s GDPR, drove the global conversation around the responsible use of data. Early in the year, we unpacked the incoming CCPA regulation that will certainly influence further discussion here in Canada about the future of our own privacy laws. IAB Canada doubled down on visibility in Ottawa to deliver the important message that PIPEDA remains a gold standard in international privacy legislation that elegantly strikes a balance between providing citizens control over their personal information and enabling industry to continue to innovate in a data-driven economy.

It was a big year for IAB on the technical development front with several hard-hitting solutions released to address pressing issues like cross-platform standardized measurement, brand safety measures and general security of the supply chain. IAB Tech Lab launched some notable initiatives including: the refined TCF v2.0 framework, the CCPA compliance mechanism, DataLabel.org for improved transparency around data “ingredients”, as well as several updates to the OpenRTB and VAST standards.

Perhaps the biggest development of 2019 was the diminishing cookie technology on which the current infrastructure relies. With several compelling discussions around potential future states, the industry is working 24/7 to collaborate on what the new order might look like. IAB is taking the lead on this conversation with remarkable collaboration from members around the world at the table with the Tech Lab, but also here in Canada. It is a rare moment in the history of digital advertising when virtually all stakeholders are aligned on the need to solve for the responsible use of data.

This year was undoubtedly a pivotal year of innovation by necessity. But it was also a year punctuated with sadness as our community mourned the loss of our beloved colleague, Peter Vaz. After a two-year battle with ALS, the industry was left broken hearted with Peter’s passing. We would like to express our sincerest thanks to nabs for the incredible support given to Peter and his family during his time of greatest need. Peter will be sorely missed but his inspiration endures.

Looking forward, we are readying for a busy 2020. Following are some key trends that IAB Canada will continue to work on:

  • Cracking the cookie-less eco-system
  • Creating and delivering new and improved education that reflects the rapid changes in our industry
  • Delivering highly relevant Canadian research that touches on all areas of the business of digital
  • Straddling standards for existing infrastructure while supporting incoming new paradigms
  • Continued developments in policy and regulatory activity including global privacy, restricted substances, elections regulation, data ethics, IP protections and more
  • Best practices in leveraging first party data – delving deeply into the incredible work being done at IAB US on the DTC economy
  • And as is true in each new year, we’re standing at the ready to handle new surprises around every corner!

IAB Canada would like to thank you for leaning in and being part of an action-packed 2019, and we wish you all a peaceful, restful and joyous holiday season.

See you in 2020!