News Digital: We won’t serve uninvited audio ads

News Digital Media has taken a decision to decline ads that play audio unexpectedly, the publisher’s chief commercial officer has revealed.  

Ed Smith told the Media Week programme on the Sky News Business Channel:

“It’s quite humiliating in an open plan work environment to suddenly have sound start up. Australia is the only large digital market that allows advertisers to do that so we’ve made a network decision that we won’t run sound-on content.”

Fairfax and Crikey are among the major sites that sometimes autoplay ads when a user opens a page.

Smith warned: “I think it can damage advertisers’ brands and campaigns. Advertisers need to be very wary of having the sound on.”

Speaking on the same programme, Lisa Giacosa, media agency OMD’s head of digital, said: “As advertisers we need to respect consumers.”

News Digital’s pledge should not come as a surprise. In May the company released a survey of 7000 visitors which said that 70% found ads unexpectedly using audio was not acceptable.


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