DMWF Global – OnDemand Panel: Is consumer education pivotal for the future of online advertising?

DMWF Global – OnDemand Panel: Is consumer education pivotal for the future of online advertising?

In the midst of a global pandemic, 2020 was a transformational  year for most people. Home-working became the norm and e-Commerce boomed, but it also accelerated the pace of digital regulatory reform, which began years before the pandemic. Online advertising, the cornerstone of the free internet, appears to be  heading into rough legislative waters with the upcoming ePrivacy negotiations and the introduction of the Digital Services and Digital Markets Acts. This is in part a response to consumers finding online ads disruptive or privacy intrusive. Research suggests that consumers want more information about how their data is being used and more options to manage their privacy preferences . Media literacy is seen as a way to empower users, not only improving access to technology but giving the tools to critically evaluate the media that they consume.

In the panel organised by DMWF and EDAA at the Digital Marketing World Forum Global 2021, our speakers and moderator took a look at the latest regulatory developments in digital advertising, user perception with regard to the industry and as some of the tools at their disposal to tailor their experience online, while ultimately trying to answer the question: could  education be the solution to rebuild trust among consumers?


Konrad Shek, Director of Policy Research, Advertising Association

Konrad Shek is the Director of Policy Research at the Advertising Association and leads on the digital, data, trade policy and industrial strategy files. Konrad has experience working in IT and telecoms, and with start-ups. He previously worked at Asian-based conglomerate Jardine Matheson for 5 years in Shanghai where he was involved in government relations and policy analysis. Prior to this he had a nine-year career as a diplomat with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, serving in London and overseas. In 2017 he was made a lifelong honorary member of the British Chamber of Commerce Shanghai. He is an accredited member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and is on his final year of an MSc in Public Policy with the University of Bath. He holds a BEng in Electronics and Mathematics from the University of Nottingham.


Rachel Barber-Mack, Director, Media Smart UK

Rachel leads Media Smart, the education non-profit from the UK advertising industry with a mission to ensure that young people can confidently navigate the media they consume including being able to identify, interpret and critically evaluate all forms of advertising. She was brought in to relaunch the programme in 2014 which has seen the programme win awards, increase its industry supporters by 50%, a trebling of funding, 75,000 downloads of its educational resources and 500,000+ young people reached. Rachel has championed innovative educational campaigns on body image and mental wellbeing, influencer marketing and social media – working with the UK Government, some of the world’s most recognised brands and charities including NSPCC and Child line. When she was 30, Rachel co-founded her own youth marketing agency, running award winning social impact campaigns for the likes of Apple, EA Sports and MTV. Rachel is also Programmes Director at Asbof – which supports trust in advertising by funding self-regulation in the UK through the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

Robin de Wouters, Communication and Commercial Manager, FEDMA

Robin is the Communication and Commercial Manager at FEDMA and a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/E). Before joining FEDMA, Robin managed the communication efforts at the European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance (EDAA). He carries a strong background in communication and public relations, spanning from the private, non-profit and institutional spheres. He previously worked in the field of human rights with Euromed Rights, the ONE Campaign and the United Nations. Passionate about US politics, he recently worked with Democrats Abroad to help the 2020 Biden/Harris presidential campaign and currently leads the Communication efforts for the Democrats Abroad Belgium chapter.

Ionel Naftanaila, Programme Development Director, EDAA

Dr. Ionel Naftanaila is EDAA’s Programme Development Director and brings with him a wealth of industry knowledge and experience. Ionel also has a strong training and teaching experience combined with technical expertise. As Business and Technology Director at the Interactive Advertising Bureau Europe, Ionel has been driving efforts to establish the EDAA and increase industry awareness of the European Self-Regulatory Programme and principles for OBA. Before joining the EDAA, he managed a company that developed and maintained AdServers and AdExchanges with OBA in Southeastern Europe. Previously, Ionel worked in the online industry, managing a company developing web applications and sites. Ionel also has a strong academic background and teaches management with key focus on IT and project management at the Bucharest University of Economic Studies. He holds a PhD in Economics Studies from Bucharest University and HEC Montreal, Canada.

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