Benedict Evans: Ads, privacy and confusion. “Privacy is coming to the internet and cookies are going away. This is long overdue – but we don’t know what happens next, we don’t have much consensus on what online privacy actually means, and most of what’s on the table conflicts fundamentally with competition.”
Daily Beast: The Hottest Campaign Ads on Twitter Didn’t Really Work: Study. “At various junctures during the 2020 campaign an attack ad would pop online that had observers on Twitter buzzing about how devastating for Donald Trump it would be. Except, more often than not, the ads weren’t effective, at least not for the nominal point of the election: persuading on-the-fence voters to back Joe Biden. That’s the conclusion the Democratic Party’s top super PAC reached after doing analytical research into a handful of spots that went viral on Twitter.”
BBC News: YouTube tweaks advertising algorithm. “YouTube is tweaking the way it chooses which videos will have adverts shown with them. The update comes after YouTube made changes to the way videos were monetised, to stop ads appearing alongside extremist content. The changes prompted complaints from some popular vloggers, saying it made it hard for them to earn money. The improved algorithm should mean more videos were classified as suitable for ads, YouTube said.”
Wired: Facebook Finally Gets Real About Fighting Fake News. “Facebook’s strategy combines crowdsourcing similar to how Facebook polices mature content, reliance on third-party fact checkers, and financial disincentives for fake news hucksters. Each aspect of the rollout has its strengths, but also invites a few questions.” Don’t see anything here about fighting obviously fake, scammy ads on Facebook.
Want to muddle your online movements? Set up streams of fake data. “AdNauseam, clicks every ad on every page I visit, baffling ad networks. When I do a search, TrackMeNot sends a stream of fake queries in the background—like ‘conan o’brien’ and ‘watch tokyo samsung’—so Google and Bing can’t easily profile me either. This is ‘obfuscation,’ and it’s a fascinating development in our relationship to online surveillance.”