Upcoming Ads.txt Changes in Mediavine Control Panel 2.6

woman using computer at home desk

Hello, Mediavine publishers! This post is going out to you.

Since the release of Mediavine Control Panel 2.5 in November 2020, we’ve been hard at work on some new features for the first 2021 update to our core plugin.

(We’ve got a pretty comprehensive help doc if you’re not sure what the Mediavine Control Panel is and does.)

Mediavine Control Panel 2.6 introduces some great new features — most notably ad support for Google Web Stories and the ability to disable Mediavine ads on blog posts right from your WordPress Editor.

It also includes overall improvements to our ads.txt management service that should make the process easier for all.

While we’re still hard at work on finishing touches for MCP version 2.6, I wanted to talk a bit about these changes to our ads.txt management.

Ads.txt and Mediavine Control Panel

A core reason for the Mediavine Control Panel (MCP) to exist in the first place is to make managing ads.txt compliance as easy as possible for all our publishers.

(Here’s a refresher on ads.txt, what it is and why it matters.)

For most of your sites, MCP ensures compliance by pulling the latest version of the ads.txt file from Mediavine’s servers and making a copy of that file on your site. After that, MCP occasionally checks for updates to the ads.txt file and pulls in any changes as necessary.

After keeping thousands of publishers’ ads.txt files up to date for almost four years, we’re adding a new method for how this works in the background.

ads.txt file in browser

What’s new in 2.6

MCP 2.6 will now be utilizing the IAB ads.txt 1.02 spec that allows redirects from the ads.txt file to a third-party “manager” of this file.

Translation: MCP will no longer have to fetch the file from us every time a change is required. Instead, MCP will redirect requests to your ads.txt file directly to Mediavine, skipping any extra steps.

Not only does this keep you in compliance with the ads.txt requirement, it also saves you from having to worry about falling out of sync going forward.

How does this affect me?

Well, for most of you, this means that you’re automatically going to be in sync with the latest version of ads.txt. This also means you’ll always have a teal health check when it comes to ads.txt.

Additionally, this redirect method still works with custom ads.txt lines in your Mediavine settings.

Some hosts might not support WordPress plugins setting up redirects. In these cases, MCP still has your back.

If MCP is unable to set up that redirect for any reason, it will still faithfully pull in the changes as it has for the previous four years, keeping you in compliance without having to manage those updates yourself.

After the 2.6 update, if you’re curious about which method MCP is using on your site, you can see for yourself on the MCP Settings page under the “Advanced” section.

screenshot of ads.txt type in the mediavine control panel.

What if I don’t want automatic updates?

We’ve always allowed publishers to take control of their ads.txt compliance and that doesn’t change with 2.6.

While we don’t recommend it, you can opt to keep your ads.txt files up to date manually by clicking the “Disable Ads.txt” button in your MCP settings.

screenshot of disable button in the mediavine control panel.

Keep in mind that if you do opt-out of MCP managing your ads.txt file, you will need to keep ads.txt up to date manually. To do this, check out our help article on how to update ads.txt manually.

When is this change happening?

We’re putting some finishing touches on the code and are currently in our final testing phases. We could see 2.6 releasing as early as Tuesday April 13th.

With this update, we’re doing what we do best which is ensure your sites stay healthy, your speeds stay fast and your revenue remains strong. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at publishers@mediavine.com.

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