MediaMath, an acclaimed independent advertising technology company for leading brands and agencies, recently announced an industry-first partnership to enable child-safety and privacy in programmatic advertising. Powered by our KidSafe Filter (part of our AwesomeAds solution), all ad impressions served to under-16 users via MediaMath are now guaranteed to be safe and free from personal identifiers. 

“MediaMath is on a journey to provide a 100% accountable and addressable supply chain, which benefits not only advertisers but consumers as well,” says Kate O’Loughlin, COO, SuperAwesome, about the partnership. “By working with SuperAwesome, they are setting a benchmark for child-safety and compliance with relevant data protection laws.”

Keep reading to learn more about the impetus for MediaMath’s integration with SuperAwesome and how it benefits brands and agencies.

Why do all brands and agencies need to care about kids’ privacy?

“The children’s audience represents a fast-growing and dynamic market, which has accelerated significantly as a result of recent lockdowns,” says Viktor Zawadzki, General Manager APAC and EMEA, MediaMath. When lockdown began back in March, screen time increased by 50% overnight for over half of kids in the United States. 

This increase in device usage means that youth audiences are consuming more content than ever before – and using platforms and services that weren’t designed with legal compliance for this segment in mind. Advertisers have an increasing legal responsibility to adhere to kids’ privacy laws and best practices. “The safety of children, and compliance with data protection laws, has to be absolutely paramount for brands,” confirms Zawadzki.

How do children’s privacy laws affect programmatic advertising?

The underlying platforms that enable programmatic advertising were designed to collect as much personal data as possible to deliver targeted, behavioral impressions. In a typical programmatic transaction, the buyer configures a campaign to bid on specific users that match the campaign’s target audience. The user is identified based on profile data, which has been collected from their browsing history or inferred from other users like them. 

However, under data protection laws like COPPA, CCPA, and GDPR-K, it is prohibited to collect personally identifiable information (PPI) from under-16 audiences without verifiable parental consent. PPI can be defined as contact details, such as name, address, or telephone number, in addition to technical identifiers, such as device ID, IP address, or geolocation. 

Restricting the collection, use, or disclosure of kids’ personal information is necessary to safeguard kids’ privacy online, but this presents challenges for advertisers. As a result most programmatic platforms simply block all child-directed inventory, limiting monetization for developers and content owners.

How do kid-safety and compliance differ?

It is important to note that safety and compliance are not one and the same. Kid-safety encompasses elements such as topic, tone, and age-appropriateness, from both a visual and language standpoint. For example, a call-to-action encouraging the viewer to buy a product now might be suitable for adult audiences. Children, however, are more vulnerable than adults to persuasive messages, and phrasing must be carefully considered to ensure kids’ wellbeing. 

The need for stronger advertising moderation processes has never been greater; 86% of consumers have come across inappropriate ads for children on television, digital sites, or newsprint in the past year.

How will this partnership help MediaMath advertisers ensure compliance and kid-safety?

This integration will allow brands and agencies to engage youth audiences programmatically with MediaMath in an effective and compliant way. In addition to eliminating data-driven targeting, all ad creatives are reviewed by SuperAwesome’s human moderation process to ensure that they are safe and age-appropriate.

“We’re very proud to be able to set the standard for children’s privacy, compliance and safety across a more accountable and addressable supply chain,” says Zawadzki, “delivering a fully kid-safe solution to our customers thanks to our integration with SuperAwesome.”

“We’re very proud to be able to set the standard for children’s privacy, compliance and safety across a more accountable and addressable supply chain, delivering a fully kid-safe solution to our customers thanks to our integration with SuperAwesome.”

–Viktor Zawadzki, General Manager APAC and EMEA, MediaMath.

Where can I learn more about kid-safe programmatic?

SuperAwesome has pioneered the kidtech sector. Our platform is used by hundreds of blue-chip brands and thousands of developers to enable responsible engagement with the global under-16 audience. Our AwesomeAds marketplace is the only ad platform built for the global kids industry. Get in touch to learn more.