A Brief Prehistory
Header bidding is a response to the “waterfall” method, a fragmented and highly inefficient process for implementing programmatic advertising. Instead of offering impressions to one partner at a time, header bidding lets all partners bid simultaneously. With header bidding, publishers can also receive bids that may be unavailable through their primary ad server.
Prebid is born
Prebid.js launched in 2015 to make header bidding easy for publishers by bringing conformity and simplicity to the header bidding process. By creating a simple, open tech layer upon which companies could add their code to a standard but optimized foundation, Prebid.js made it easier to implement header bidding, and offered the largest repository of working adapters.
Today, Prebid.js is the most widely used header bidding “container” or “wrapper” on the web. As of December 2020, Prebid.org has over 80 member companies.
Prebid.org manages the open source projects Prebid.js, Prebid Mobile, Prebid Server, Prebid Video, Prebid Native as well as the Publisher-led User Identity module SharedID. Prebid.org is open to all companies who are part of the programmatic ecosystem, from ad tech vendors to publishers and others. Prebid.org drives standardized, transparent technology for advertising that will make it easier for buyers and sellers to transact at scale in a fully programmatic ecosystem.
Prebid.org's Identity Product Management Committee which is chaired by Publishers, is responsible for charting Prebid.org's role in the future of identity and coordinating implementation efforts.
Led by this committee Prebid recently announced the release of SharedID, a free, independent, transparent, open-source identifier. SharedID combines both a first-and-third-party cookie footprint and is combined with the PubCommon identifier, formerly owned and operated by Epsilon. This consolidated identifier is now owned and operated by Prebid.org.