The Trade Desk Kicks Off UID 2.0 Beta Testing In Canada

Live beta testing of Unified ID 2.0 is now underway in Canada.

Oh, (beta testing in) Canada.

On Thursday, The Trade Desk said that live beta testing of Unified ID 2.0 is now underway in Canada.

Some existing UID2 partners are helping to shepherd the test, including Index Exchange, Magnite, Publicis, Omnicom Media Group and IPG’s Kinesso. (Kinesso is one of two “closed operators” for UID2 that will be able to use first-party data to create and encrypt UID2 identifiers. The other closed operator is IPG-owned Acxiom.)

New partners supporting the Canadian beta testing phase include Comscore Canada, online Canada-based classified ad website Kijiji (which is part of the eBay Classified Group) and Rogers, one of Canada’s largest cable and wireless companies.

Rogers also claims to be the largest provider of “premium content” through CTV services in Canada, according to Al Dark, SVP of revenue at the Rogers subsidiary focused on mass media and sports properties.

Unified ID 2.0 is a collective industry effort, spearheaded by The Trade Desk, to create an email-based alternative to third-party cookies.

A smorgasbord of ecosystem participants have signed on to support the initiative since October 2020, when The Trade Desk first started lining up partners in earnest.

Since then, beta tests kicked off in March in the US, so that advertisers could start transacting on impressions using UID2 IDs.

In May, TTD committed the full open-source code base for Unified ID 2.0 to the Partnership for Responsible Addressable Media Technical Working Group, which is run by the IAB Tech Lab. (That’s a mouthful.)

But there are big questions looming about the viability of email-based IDs.

Google, for instance, came out against email-based IDs in early March. “We don’t believe these solutions will meet rising consumer expectations for privacy, nor will they stand up to rapidly evolving regulatory restrictions, and therefore aren’t a sustainable long-term investment,” wrote David Temkin, Google’s director of product management for ads privacy and trust, in a blog post referring specifically to “PII graphs based on people’s email addresses.”

Google obviously has a team of horses galloping in this race, but there is a valid point to be made about the sustainability of any solution that doesn't meet consumer expectations.

According to research conducted by The Trade Desk and YouGov Canada back in June, 79% of Canadians say they’d like to better understand what data is collected about them as they browse online and how their email addresses are being used when they sign in to a website.

Read between the lines, and that means the vast majority of Canadians (and one could easily extrapolate this to consumers regardless of country or geographic region) don’t have a solid grasp on how their data is being collected and used.

Click here for a quick catch-me-up on the Unified ID 2.0 initiative.

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