The Association of Online Publishers (AOP) is looking to develop voluntary guidelines for publishers, as a result of increased frustration among its members over the late delivery of advertising copy by agencies.

‘Use it or lose it’ is the message already adopted by several AOP member companies, many of whom see delivery of reduced inventory as a more effective (and less administratively-heavy) penalty, than charging a cash fee.

The initiative was proposed at a meeting of the AOP Commercial Working Group, which comprises of the commercial heads of AOP member organisations including ANM, BSkyB, Channel4, CNET, Emap, Future Publishing,, GCap Media, Guardian Unlimited, Haymarket, and News International among others.

Alexandra White, director of AOP said: “While the ability to respond quickly and effectively is one of the strengths of online compared to other media, it’s just not practical for copy to be delivered at the eleventh hour – or in many cases, well after the campaign was due to launch. AOP members have decided to raise awareness of this problem and want agencies and clients to work together with them to set some limits.”

Giuseppe Troisi, chair of the working group and consultant to GCap Media, commented: “AOP is a group of premium media owners; our content is premium and therefore our inventory is at a premium. Late copy and its possible knock-on effect to all commercial partners puts undue pressure on our ability to meet our own high standards in delivery, customer service and trafficking, which on a larger scale can reflect poorly on what is a dynamic and successful medium.”

Errol Baran, head of advertising and sponsorship for Channel4, said: “The dynamic nature of digital media has allowed many clients to leave their options open with regards to creative selection, right up until the last moment. Our industry has moved on so much that we now need to develop ways in which creatives are delivered in time: this will then ensure a smoother, more efficient delivery of campaigns across all sites."
About AOP
The UK Association of Online Publishers (AOP) is an industry body representing online publishing companies that create original, branded, quality content. AOP champions the interests of approximately 160 publishing companies from diverse backgrounds including newspaper and magazine publishing, TV and radio broadcasting, and pure online media. Together they publish around 1,150 products and attract more than five billion page impressions per month.

AOP presents a unified voice to industry and Government, specifically to address issues and concerns relating to all areas of online publishing. AOP publishes original research, hosts forums, conferences and events, covering a range of topics from paid-for-content, subscription models and data protection, through to copyright, content management, new technologies and audience measurement.

Last year AOP produced the highly acclaimed research ‘Reaching the Online Elite’ and every year it delivers the annual member benchmarking study, the ‘AOP Census’. This year AOP will add to its original research with two new studies.

The AOP autumn Online Publishing Conference & Awards is its annual industry event. It attracts the biggest names in online publishing to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the industry and celebrate outstanding achievement. The 2005 event will be held on 7 October at the London Hilton, Park Lane.

Members include Associated New Media, BBC, BSkyB, Capital Radio Group, CNET Networks, Channel 4, Dennis Interactive, The Economist Group, Emap,, Future Publishing, Guardian Unlimited, Haymarket Publishing, Independent Digital, IPC Media, ITV Online, News International, Reed Business Information, Telegraph Group Limited and Which?. In addition, PPAi (Periodical Publishers Association Interactive) retains a corporate seat on AOP board: representing the interests of magazine publishers online.


Matthew Leach
immediate future Ltd
0845 408 2031

Published on: 12:00AM on 8th August 2005