LAS VEGAS, June 13 — The AdsML Consortium, an international group of organizations serving the print, electronic and digital publishing industries, today met in plenary session to approve the framework of AdsML 1.0, a new XML-based (eXtensible Markup Language) open standard that will govern the digital exchange of information between all parties involved in the advertising workflow, from concept to publication to billing. Approval of the framework is a crucial step toward the official, public announcement of the standard, which will be released in October, 2003.
Meeting in conjunction with the Newspaper Association of America’s (NAA) NEXPO/SuperConference 2003 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, this also is the North American launch of the Consortium’s campaign to have the AdsML 1.0 specification adopted across all parts of the advertising supply chain, throughout the world. A special workshop Monday will focus on the components of the standard’s framework and outline the ways AdsML builds on existing standards that deal with specific stages in the lifecycle of an advertisement.
“What this means for the business of advertising is that ads will be more likely to run when they should, where they should and exactly as they should, each and every time,” says Alan Marshall, managing director of Associated Mediabase, London, U.K. “Revenue now lost through breakdowns in processes that are complex, disconnected and subject to complications and inefficiencies will be recaptured to raise profits instead. With markets becoming increasingly international and with advertisements seen more and more as multipurpose digital assets to be reused across different media, the need for this kind of comprehensive, global standard for all types of advertisements is great.”
The specification will provide standardized electronic processes for all sectors of the advertising industry. Its use will shorten deadlines and time to market, reduce errors, improve communication, save time and money and enhance business relationships. The effect on media environments now and tomorrow will be profound.
Tony Stewart, director of consulting at RivCom, Limited in London, U.K., and chair of the Technical Working Group that is designing the standard, says that “It’s the combination of the three components that make up the AdsML framework — business process definitions, guidelines and recommendations — that will provide the compelling value to the industry. Together, they will give us a framework within which industry members can agree on the types of information that should be exchanged in digital form and the XML standard best suited for each type. We’ll then be able to put those agreements into practice. Until now, it hasn’t even been possible to have this conversation on a global scale, much less implement the results.”
AdsML is a vendor-neutral, business-process neutral, inter-operable standard that will work on all platforms, across a wide range of operating systems in any environment. AdsML version 1.0 defines a framework consisting of components that for now emphasize AdsML business processes and the AdsML “envelope.”
“AdsML is a major step forward in the 15-year quest of media to complete the process of business-to-business communication of advertising documents,” says John Iobst, vice president of NAA/IFRA Technical Solutions, LLC, Vienna, Va., U.S.A., and an AdsML Consortium steering committee member. “This standard promotes creativity by shifting more of the plodding, repetitive work associated with advertising — such as insertions, invoicing, billings, inventory management and so forth — to computers. AdsML harnesses computers to do what they do best, so advertising personnel are free to be creative. Computers are not creative, but they do drone work exceedingly well.” Iobst will conduct the workshop that introduces AdsML to the North American advertising industry.
The AdML Consortium is an initiative supported by Ifra, an international association for media publishing, and NAA, an association of newspapers in North America that is based in Vienna, Virginia, USA.
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