The reality is that, even before the current viability crisis, there were too few news outlets to serve audiences across the range of languages, localities and communities. Many countries have lacked an inclusive professional journalism system that serves diverse audiences and covers stories of, and for, marginalised communities and people living in poverty. Efforts to support the production of public interest journalism should therefore be framed in a wider perspective of reinvigorating media development more broadly.
The GARM has developed and will adopt common definitions to ensure that the advertising industry is categorizing harmful content in the same way across the board. These eleven key categories have been identified in consultation with experts from GARM’s NGO Consultative Group. Establishing these standards is the essential foundation needed to stop harmful content from being monetised through advertising. Individual GARM members will adopt these shared principles in their operations, whether they are a marketer, agency, or media platform.We fundamentally believe that, together, these definitions are the cornerstone for us to find balance between supporting responsible speech, bolstering public safety, and providing for responsible marketing practices. With this framework of consistent categories in place, we will be able to improve transparency in the availability, monetization, and inclusion of content within advertising campaigns. This is essential to help platforms, agencies, and advertisers make decisions essential to the advertising industry.In November 2019, the GARM initiated work towards this challenge under a working group focused on advancing shared language and standards for advertising & media (as seen in our GARM Charter here). The output of this work is the following:
- 1.A common understanding of what harmful and sensitive content is via content categories
- 2.A common understanding of where ads should not appear, as expressed in a Brand Safety Floor
- 3.A common way of delineating different risk levels for sensitive content, as expressed in a Brand SuitabilityFramework
"The approach should be of interest to everyone who has an interest in the health of journalism. That would include individual practitioners, publishers, regulators, governments and others. We feel that it should particularly be taken into account by the media development community. We believe that the development of intervention and support strategies and plans can profit from using the notion of sustainability as a unifying principle."