Will EU GDPR laws affect the banner ad model?

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  • What’s everyone planning for the introduction of the new European GDPR laws on May 28th regarding having to request permission to store and retain personal information and serve banner adverts? Apparently without the express permission of the end user games or other apps cannot serve banner adverts plus the game (or creator) must securely store the user data and securely dispose of individual user data if requested to do so.

    Essentially this new law seems to apply to every developer who owns an app. Developers may need to supply consent functionality for the end user to opt in to, plus store and manage that data that they neither want nor benefit from - and let’s be honest, which user wants to opt in to having adverts in their games? There’s a lot up in the air regarding this at the moment but the general consensus seems to be that if after the 28th May your app(s) don’t comply with this law then you’re contravening EU law. Don’t think that it concerns you because you’re based or live outside of the EU? Wrong - if a European accesses your app outside of the EU they’re still protected by EU law and so you can’t simply switch your app off for EU users (why would you want to anyway?).

    The simplest solution is to switch off your ads completely and opt for a payed app model. This however will see those relying on banner ads for income’s profits plummet. It may also see the profits of Google’s admob service plummet too - Google have been very sketchy on how they plan to handle this, they’ve made some noises regarding a revised SDK to help developers but as of yet there’s been nothing concrete, which is odd as they seem to lose billions if their claims that they pay devs billions via Admob each year are to be believed. Big losses could also happen for larger dev houses such as Ketcapp and Voodoo who stuff all of their hypercasual apps with banner ads.

    Anyone got any thoughts on this?

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  • I'm also curious about this. What about games that have some kind of sign in functionality, account, or databese, with scores and achievment tracking?

    You also need some consent functionality for that?

  • If an app clearly states that it has ads, does that not mean that downloading it is consent?

  • Yes, GDPR is affecting the ad business. You must get the user consent to display targeted ads.

    Regarding Google/Admob (which is the ad provider behind the Mobile Advert plugin in Construct), they will stop displaying targeted ads if you don't have the user consent. The impact for the publisher is hard to say: maybe you will have less ad revenue without the user consent but higher ad revenue with user consent...

    If you plan to display ads using the Mobile Advert plugin, i see the following actions:

    For you, the publisher:

    • if the user is based in Europe
    • at app launch, you display a popup asking the user to confirm if he agrees to see targeted ads
    • you store the user consent locally to avoid displaying the popup at every app launch
    • you add a submenu in the settings of your app to allow the user updating his consent

    For Scirra/Construct:

    In a nutshell, with the new GDPR compliant AdMob SDKs the publisher can forward the user consent flag. This way Google/AdMob can stop displaying targeted ads.

  • Targeted Ads are different than normal ads? So users will stil get normal ads but not get ads specifically targeted to them? This will kill revenue fckk

  • Targeted Ads are different than normal ads?


    So users will stil get normal ads but not get ads specifically targeted to them? This will kill revenue fckk

    In the context of AdMob: yes. It will be interesting to see in the coming days/weeks the best practices used by others publishers to invite their users to give their consent... But it will be limited as I think you cannot convince your users by rewarding them

  • How can you disable "targeted ads" using Construct 3 and the Mobile Adbert plugin? I dont see any way to do that, will we have to wait for an update to the plugin?

  • The Mobile Advert plugin is not compatible with the latest changes in AdMob SDK regarding user consent for GDPR...

    I guess we should report this to Scirra team. Any idea how to do it?

  • The official Admob literature, states.

    Requesting Consent from European Users

    "Ads served by Google can be categorized as personalized or non-personalized, both requiring consent from users in the EEA. "

    So you still have to have a user consent pop up for Personalized or non-personalized.

    "Under the Google EU User Consent Policy, you must identify each ad technology provider that receives end users' personal data as a consequence of your use of a Google product and provide information about the use of that data"

    That will require a link to all the ad technology providers providers that you use.

    Potential fines for non-compliance

    "One of the new aspects of GDPR is that it names a price for non-compliance – fines can reach up to €20M Or 4% of annual gross revenues – the greatest of the two. What this means for app companies is that they have a strong business case to invest money and effort in complying.", source http://blog.soomla.com/2017/12/gdpr-101-for-mobile-app-or-how-to-avoid-a-e20m-fine.html

    So we need to know if this user consent option will be available in the Mobile Advert plugin.



    a link to the consent sdk implementation is below.


    Many thanks.

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