Helping advertisers obtain and execute meaningful commitments.

Society is suffering from a severe trust deficit. Between the 2016 K2 Intelligence Transparency report, which unearthed non-transparent business practices in the media and buying ecosystem, and the congressional hearings of tech giants like Facebook, Google and Twitter, trust in the industry is at an all-time low.

In March 2017, leading advertisers, agencies, trade associations, journalists, and distinguished scholars joined together and pioneered the launch of the Advertising Trust & Transparency Forum (ATTF) at the UN to discuss the current state of “trust systems” among agency and client partners and members of the media. Their ambition: identify concrete steps to help bridge the trust gap. This led to the genesis of the Advertising Contract Exchange. 

Advertising Contract Exchange
The ATTF has identified four key areas of trust deficiency it believes the advertising community can and should address:

  • Between advertisers and their agencies
  • Between media agencies and media sellers
  • Between consumers and the ads they see
  • General concern about the safety of personal data

Real change will come in the form of concrete contractual agreements. The Advertising Contract Exchange (ACE) is an open-source database of contract clauses currently used by marketers and agencies.

Digital media—with its enormously powerful ability to reach mass audiences—rests at the foundation of the trust issues and has yet to adapt to the standards and practices common in traditional media. The ATTF believes the ACE can help curtail untrustworthy practices in the digital realm.

These clauses are available for you to use for free to ensure honest, transparent business practices in your media buys, contracts and partnerships.

The ACE was created using a range of sources developed for client-side advertisers, agency marketers and third party associations. This 360-degree approach delivers full transparency within the database of clauses. This way, no matter your role in the advertising landscape you have full visibility of the tools, resources and expectations available across the board in bridging the trust gap.

ANA: Association of National Advertisers makes a difference for all marketers, their brands, and the industry. They focus on driving growth by fueling smarter marketing and leading industry change.

4A’s: The American Association of Advertising Agencies provides proprietary access to the people, information, tools and training that advertising agencies need to become more successful.

IAE: The Institute of Advertising Ethics, funded by the American Advertising Federation, is in place to Inspire Advertising, Public Relations and Marketing Communications Professionals to Practice the Highest Personal Ethics in the Creation and Dissemination of Commercial Information to Consumers.

Michael Donahue, Co-Chair Trust & Transparency Forum
Andrew Susman, Co-Chair Trust & Transparency Forum; CEO, Emoto

Board of Advisors 
Dr. Augustine Fou, CEO, Marketing Science 
Andrea MacDonald, CEO, MacDonald Media
Tony Pace, Chairman, Marketing Accountability Standards Board
Dr. Yoram Wind, University of Pennsylvania
Doug Wood, Partner, Reed Smith
Ken Zinn, Vice President, Digital, Zurich Insurance

The Advertising Contracts Exchange (ACE) provides examples of draft terms that may be considered for use  in business transactions and consumer marketing. AAF/IAE is not providing legal advice. Consult with your business attorney before incorporating terms into an agreement, and please confirm that language selected accurately reflects the business transaction or consumer advertisement.  AAF/IAE accepts no responsibility.