MediaMath Pens An Open Letter to SSPs About the Way They Conduct Business

October 3, 2018 — by MediaMath

Today, MediaMath sent an open letter to our 50 directly integrated suppliers telling them that we will stop buying from partners that play auction games. The announcement of our rollout of policies and procedures in the name of creating an economic incentive for fair, transparent programmatic auctions is covered in AdExchanger with commentary from MediaMath GM of Media and Growth Channels Lewis Rothkopf and Director of Product Management, Supply Anna Hewitt. An excerpt of the letter is below—read the full article here.

It’s been a challenging time for our industry, and for digital media more broadly: Congress continues to probe the activities of social media giants, again putting tech companies in the hot seat. The role of the “platform company” was spotlighted yet again as part of the seismic shift taking place in the marketing world. You can see aftershocks of this throughout ad tech: although not social platforms, our respective companies happen to be platforms as well, and we each have a critical role in maintaining the integrity of our own market. At risk is the ongoing sustainability of our industry. We can’t wait for government intervention to bring about true transparency and accountability.

Fighting over market share has diminishing returns when the pie starts shrinking due to an erosion of trust. Look elsewhere for an analogy: who “trusts” the cryptocurrency markets right now? We are facing a choice: clean up our act as an industry or hand the keys over to the Walled Gardens, who can apparently afford to apologize and move on when they experience lapses.

Marketers are tired of games, and don’t want to hear yet another explanation about something obscure in the auction that has inadvertently subtracted value from their marketing efforts. In response, MediaMath is rolling out policies and procedures to make even more clear our current prohibitions against auction manipulation, and any supply-side tactics that solely exist to unduly disadvantage other SSPs. We believe that SSPs can add the most value when they put their energy towards improving marketer outcomes, instead of myopically focusing on killing each other at any cost.