May 8, 2018 / 4:48 PM / 16 days ago

Google gives publishers controls to comply with EU privacy law

(Reuters) - Alphabet Inc’s Google said on Tuesday it had updated its ad-serving platform, which is used by online publishers, allowing them to select advertising tech vendors that comply with new European data privacy laws.

A man walks through light rain in front of the Hey Google booth under construction at the Las Vegas Convention Center in preparation for the 2018 CES in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. January 8, 2018. REUTERS/Steve Marcus/Files

Google is the top vendor of the software that many newspapers and digital media firms use to sell ads on their platforms.

The new controls that Google gave publishers make it easier for them to become compliant with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which comes into effect on May 25.

Google said it will give publishers two options for selecting compliant ad tech vendors, including publishers choosing from a list of providers (mainly ad buyers) that contribute most to its revenue.

Four major publisher trade groups had told Google late last month it was forcing media firms that generate revenue from its advertising services to accept unreasonable responsibilities under the GDPR, according to a letter seen by Reuters.

The trade groups represent about 4,000 newspapers and media companies, primarily in Europe and North America, including Axel Springer, Telegraph Media Group and the New York Times Co.

The dispute reflects differing interpretations of the GDPR, which imposes a range of new requirements on how companies collect and process personal information about EU users.

Reporting by Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar and Shounak Dasgupta

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