It’s the last Last Week in Digital Media for the year. Thanks for reading, sharing, and notes of encouragement throughout the year.
- The IPG Media Lab has published an excellent retrospective of the year, reviewing progress in six (6) key areas from regulation, to voice search and AR. Something to read and reflect on over the holiday break and prior to CES.
- Verizon’s acquisition of OATH: continues to struggle, with Verizon taking a US$4.5B write-down on the OATH: business (essentially all of the goodwill) with layoffs expected. There are also reports that OATH: mind wind down/close some Yahoo! and AOL brands.
- Google+ is shutting down earlier than planned, moving to April 2019 (up from August). The shutdown is in response to a security incident that saw the data of 52.5MM users leaked (including name, email, occupation).
- Facebook is testing search ads again (the last time was back in 2013). It’s being tested in the US and Canada and only applies when making retail-related searches in the automotive and eCommerce categories. The best news, is the Facebook Search Ads are currently free – they just need to be set up in Ad Manager if you’re account/client is eligible.
- Facebook released some details about Facebook Watch, claiming that there are 400MM people monthly and 75MM people daily who spend at least 1 minute on watch. Although Facebook then confirmed to Axios that those 60 seconds need not be continuous so there are some question marks over the actual quality and size of the audience (and demonstrates why MRC standards and accreditation matters).
- There are rumors doing the round that Facebook plans to sell pay TV video channels directly, that you would also watch on Facebook. Facebook is rumored to be talking to HBO, Starz, and Showtime.
- the IAB has released a report that the Open Measurement SDK (which supports in-app advertising measurement) has combined reach across 2B devices (globally). If you’re serious about mobile app inventory quality, you should prioritize partners that are SDK certified, including in the US, Flipboard, Gameloft, GetDabbl, Google, InMobi, Intowow, Inmarket, Pandora, and Tapjoy.
- Nielsen published their Q2 Total Audience Measurement report. Some highlights include that free (broadcast) TV was up (now 13% of all US homes), virtual Multichannel Video Programming Distributors (vMVPDs) which includes Hulu, YouTube TV are up, and radio is holding strong at 93%. Total media consumption, across all devices, sits at 10 hours per day but that includes multiple devices, sharing the same hours.
PRIVACY, TRUST, and SAFETY
- Facebook reported a security incident where a bug in their developer API may have exposed the photos of 6.8MM users to developers without the appropriate permissions. Affected users will be notified via a “bug alert” on Facebook. CNN has reported that the Irish Data Protection Commission is investigating Facebook “as a result of multiple breaches the company had informed them about this year”.
- 3rd Party Verification is now broadly available on YouTube to all advertisers. Both IAS and DoubleVerify are available. In related news, Google’s latest transparency report revealed that it took down 50.2M videos in Q3 2018 and 1.7MM channels. The full report provides details of what type of content was removed, as well as who (automated vs reported).
- The Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) has released a draft discussion document for US Privacy legislation. This includes a handy GDPR, California Privacy Protection Act, CDT Proposal comparison document (PDF). The FTC Chair Federal has stated that he is in favor of a National US Privacy regime and wants to avoid unintended consequences.
- There’s a great thought-provoking read on information warfare, social media regulation, and security over on Ribbon Farm called “The Digital; Maginot Line“. It should also be read in parallel with the transcript of a speech from Senator Mark Warner calling for an overhaul of the US Cyber Security Doctrine. Both of these documents have significance for the digital advertising and media industry.
I want to end the year on a note of optimism, hope, and fun. So the final important distraction of the week is from NASA and their New Horizon mission. You can send your name to the New Horizon spacecraft, for free, but you must register by December 21. Names will be sent on January 1, which makes for a fun way to start 2019.
Have a safe and happy holiday season and New Year.