IAB OpenDirect Specification

In September 2016, the IAB Tech Lab released a revised version of the OpenDirect 1.5, first released in March 2016, with several essential updates and bug fixes (see details below).

OpenDirect V1.5.1   OpenDirect FAQ

About OpenDirect

IAB released the first version of OpenDirect in January 2015. Originally developed by a working group of representatives from AOL, Microsoft, Yahoo, and Yieldex, and later expanded to include executives from Bionic Advertising Systems and MediaMath as well, the OpenDirect specification was brought to IAB and its Digital Advertising Automation Task Force to be part of the trade association’s existing automation efforts, to gain wider industry participation, and to drive adoption across the ecosystem.

Automated Guaranteed is the method of buying which automates the digital direct sale. The deal is negotiated directly between buyer and seller (in-person or via a platform), the inventory and pricing are guaranteed, and the campaign runs at the same priority as other direct deals in the ad server. The RFP (Request for Proposal) and campaign trafficking process are completely automated within the technology platform. OpenDirect is the API specification which supports this process.

API Specification Versions

OpenDirect 1.5.1

OpenDirect 1.5.1, released in September 2016, provides an update to the specification including several bug fixes as well as clarification around User Accounts.

OpenDirect 1.5

OpenDirect 1.5, released in March 2016, provided essential updates such as change request support, revised diagrams, and improved implementation references in order to drive wider industry adoption of the protocol. Release highlights include:

  • Increased currency rules
  • Publisher order creation
  • Change request support
  • Provision for publishers to finalize orders prior to creative being assigned

Download latest version: OpenDirect V1.5.1 (PDF)

Previous version: OpenDirect Specification V1.5

OpenDirect 1.0

OpenDirect 1.0, released January 2015, was the first open specification that supports Automated Guaranteed to be released into the market. The specification offers a range of benefits to both agencies and publishers alike including:

Publisher benefits:

  • Increased workflow efficiencies
  • Greater control in packaging, pricing, and delivery of inventory
  • Reliable means of automating reserved inventory

Agency benefits:

  • Liquidity of bigger pools of unique users
  • Increased efficiency via one API integration across multiple publishers
  • Book guaranteed delivery and access to media offerings not available on an exchange

Download OpenDirect Specification V1 Read the Press Release about OpenDirect V1

Guidelines and Advisories

OpenDirect FAQ, released March 2016, answers commonly asked questions relating to the implementation of the OpenDirect protocol.

Read the OpenDirect FAQ

For more information or to join the OpenDirect Working Group, contact Jennifer Derke, Senior Manager, Product, at the IAB Tech Lab at [email protected].