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Controversy Brewing Over BT Bank Ads

BEHAVIORAL TARGETING—U.S.

January 20, 2011

MediaPost News reports on a controversy brewing over behavioral ads for big-name companies showing up in online bank statements as coming with "less-than-ideal timing for the advertising industry, to put it mildly." While indications are the ads are working, the report states, consumer privacy protection groups contend that most consumers are unaware of opt outs, and media reports on the practice are "generating negative viral attention for both banks and participating marketers." Meanwhile, advertising industry groups are urging marketer and agency members to implement a self-regulatory online behavioral advertising program to avoid government intervention, the report states, while the FTC is collecting comments on a possible do-not-track mechanism through the end of this month.
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