After a 30-day period of public comment and review, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has published the Rich Media Measurement Guidelines. IAB "Rich media" ads are online ads with elements that users can interact with. Formats include transitional (interstitial) and over-the-page units (floating ads, page tear-backs and take-overs).
The new measurement guidelines determine the point at which a rich media ad impression is counted. Generally, a measurement will be considered legitimate when an ad counter receives and responds to an HTTP request for a tracking asset from a user's browser. This is considered as late as possible in "the delivery of creative material to the user’s browser and therefore closest to the actual opportunity to see by the user."
Ad counters are also required to employ standard headers on the response, to minimize caching.
Wireless, offline cached media, interactive television, "flash tracking" and flash sites were not covered in the guidelines. To help educate practitioners and others about rich media measurement, the IAB is hosting a webinar on Wednesday, January 23rd, between 4-5 PM Eastern.
Download the Rich Media Measurement Guidelines. Those inclined may register for the webinar at the same URL.
The standards, which cover online browser or browser-equivale nt based internet activity, are positioned as addendum to existing IAB Ad Impression Measurement Guidelines, which were published in 2004. The addendum was facilitated by the Media Rating Council, and the final product was warmly applauded by the Association of National Advertisers.