Online Platforms and Digital Advertising Market Study: Observations on CMA’s Interim Report

15 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2020

See all articles by Damien Geradin

Damien Geradin

Geradin Partners; Tilburg Law & Economics Center (TILEC); University of East Anglia (UEA) - Centre for Competition Policy; University College London - Faculty of Laws

Dimitrios Katsifis

Geradin Partners

Date Written: February 13, 2020

Abstract

This paper contains our personal observations on the CMA’s Interim Report on its Market Study on Online platforms and digital advertising (the “Interim Report”). As a starting point, we are very impressed by the quality of the Interim Report as it correctly identifies the competition issues raised by digital advertising and accurately discusses the complex mechanisms involved in digital advertising including real-time bidding (“RTB”). The CMA’s analysis is very much in line with our own research work on online display advertising, which is the area on which our comments will focus.

Our observations are structured as follows. Part II contains some general observations on the Interim Report’s analysis of open display advertising. Part III discusses certain aspects of Google’s recent switch to a single unified first-price auction (the “Unified Auction”), which in our view warrant further investigation. Part IV provides our preliminary thoughts on Chrome phasing out third-party cookies. Part V concludes.

Keywords: Competition, advertising, auctions, real-time bidding; Google, programmatic advertising, abuse of dominance, cookies

JEL Classification: D44, K21, L12, L41, L50

Suggested Citation

Geradin, Damien and Katsifis, Dimitrios, Online Platforms and Digital Advertising Market Study: Observations on CMA’s Interim Report (February 13, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3537864 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3537864

Damien Geradin (Contact Author)

Geradin Partners ( email )

Avenue Louise 475
Brussels
Belgium

Tilburg Law & Economics Center (TILEC)

Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

University of East Anglia (UEA) - Centre for Competition Policy ( email )

UEA
Norwich Research Park
Norwich, Norfolk NR47TJ
United Kingdom

University College London - Faculty of Laws ( email )

Gower St
London WC1E OEG, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

Dimitrios Katsifis

Geradin Partners ( email )

Avenue Louise 475
Brussels
Belgium

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