The Heart of Privacy Innovation Beats Strong

As we review the recently released details behind the APD ruling on the IAB Europe TCF framework, we are collectively learning a great deal about the contours of the law itself and are working to better understand what kind of solutions would address the shortcomings found in the current version. As a refresher, the TCF framework was developed to maintain the ability for the programmatic portion of our industry to operate under the stringent rules of the GDPR. To be clear, the findings are largely an inditement against programmatic advertising as opposed to the TCF framework alone.

While the ruling presents a major setback for the entire eco-system on the specific matter of OpenRTB advertising, we remain encouraged by the rapid developments on the other side of addressability that will maintain marketers’ ability to reach scaled audiences. We now put our collective heads down and begin work on a remedied solution to consent with our IAB global network.

The news was particularly interesting to us in Canada given that some of our major challenges in developing the policies that would govern our local framework were initially deemed too restrictive and tipped too far in the favour of protecting privacy with an opt-out option at the outset. The feedback from our own market prompted further discussions with IAB Tech Lab on how best to support our current federal legislation and the newly passed Bill 64 in Quebec. While an international technical working group has been developing a TCF string for the Canadian marketplace that would work under the current European model, we are also exploring alternative models that we are able to adopt in short order.

The Global Privacy Platform, under rapid development at the IAB Tech Lab, aims to support cross-jurisdictional privacy regulation in a standardized way. The Canadian market will be among the first to deploy a framework under this umbrella. While IAB Europe continues to work with the DPAs to appeal some of the findings and develop solutions to address the legitimate shortcomings exposed in their 3- year investigation, we will work with the global network to ensure our market is furnished with a model that addresses all learnings from across our international network.

IAB Canada will update the Privacy working group on the latest discussions with IAB Tech Lab and present the revised privacy roadmap in the coming days. In the meantime, we are proud of the work that IAB Europe has done on behalf of the global digital media supply chain. The heart of innovation is a brave one and pioneering the complexities of cross-jurisdictional privacy law is extremely hard work. We have full confidence that the next iteration will be stronger because of the pressure it has sustained to be so and the smart minds who are committed to making it happen.

If you are an IAB Canada member and would like to join the conversation, please reach out to