Obama or McCain? Who’s Better for the IAB?

ClickZ_Campaign08_katefinal.jpgAs part of a broader conversation last week, I asked Internet Advertising Bureau VP Public Policy Mike Zaneis what he thought about how the IAB would fare under a Barack Obama administration versus a John McCain administration.

Q: Do you have any sense of what administration might be better when it comes to the IAB’s goals?

A: I don’t think we really know. Senator McCain obviously has a long history chairing the Senate Commerce Committee, and bills such as CAN-SPAM, and I think Do-Not-Call. I’m not sure what that teaches you. It’s regulation of technology and advertising, but they are also bills that industry has been able to largely support and to certainly operate robustly under. I see a balance there. You see some interest in technology. I think he’s always been really supportive of staff that really understand the issues, and that’s really helped. Under an administration would those same staff be the folks making the calls? I don’t know. We’ll see.

I don’t think it’s a high, high priority for Senator McCain; I don’t think it’s a high, high priority for Senator Obama. And neither one of them has come out with real defined, real detailed specifics around privacy, technology, or ecommerce.

With Senator Obama there would be some education there; he doesn’t have quite the long history. But one thing he’s shown is he can bring in real substantive experts to educate himself around issues. I don’t think he’s got the staff to pull from like McCain does, but he’s shown himself very adept and has such widespread support he could find a lot of smart people to have on the policy side.

The short answer is we don’t know and I don’t think one would be more favorable than the other right now. I think we’d be able to work with both of them to be honest with you. Again it would be education: maybe a little more education around Senator Obama, because there’s not quite the history there, but I think he’d be open to it.

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