Advertising network Crimtan has become the first to commit to using AdSafe’s content verification and ad blocking tools across all campaigns in the UK.

US-based AdSafe’s Content Rating System evaluates the content of individual web pages, giving them a ‘brand safety’ score based on a range of data sources that include semantic filters, human scoring and image analysis.

The company says that this ensures that ads never appear on damaging pages that might include adult content, illegal downloads, offensive language, drugs references or ‘hate speech’.

Paul Goad, MD of Crimtan, said that advertisers are now extremely concerned about the risks their brands face when running ad campaigns online. He said that until recently, they’ve only had the Internet Advertising Sales House to rely on, but with new companies and technology supplying more online advertising inventory than ever, brands need to take additional steps to ensure their ads don’t appear next to inappropriate content.

IASH has done a great job of cleaning up ad inventory, and we continue to support independent audits by working with ABC and our industry as it evolves to take CV tools into account – but we want to make sure that our advertisers benefit from the best brand protection tools available today.”

Tamara Littleton, CEO and founder of eModeration, a user-generated content moderation and content management provider, said that as far as she was concerned, anything which promotes the management of pages and sites so that they are kept free of illegal or inappropriate content has to be a good thing.  

Communities which are not looked after in this way can easily disintegrate into online cesspits, which do nothing for the reputation of the host or the advertisers, and are offensive, even dangerous, for visitors, especially minors.”

She added that website owners have a responsibility to monitor their spaces, and have long been aware that if they don’t make efforts through moderation and community management to keep their sites clean, then they face not only the prospect of legal action but also loss of revenue through lost advertising.  

AdSafe’s technology, if it is as effective as it is described, should ensure that the consequences of an unmanaged site are directly felt. But Crimtan’s use of this system is at the moment just one nod to one type of solution.

Fred Destin, an investor in AdSafe, explained in a comprehensive blog post last year just why he believes in the company, citing growing spend on display advertising online, an increase in awareness of reputation mnagament and the rise of algorithmic media planning along the way. Most interestingly however, he adds that;

In every press release, AdSafe will likely tout P&G and Coca-Cola as trial customers but the folks paying the real dollars will be Netflix, University of Phoenix and other direct response marketers whose perceptions of brand building and marketing objectives are very different to the former group.”