Microsoft Buying Adobe Rumor Mill; Undertone Opens Its Inventory To Trading Desks; New RTB Case Study

Microsoft And AdobeHere’s today’s news round-up… Want it by email? Sign-up here.

Steve Ballmer Takes Adobe Meeting

The New York Times’ Bits blog speculates that a recent trip to see Adobe executives by Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer and his entourage may be the first step towards an acquisition of Adobe. The NYT’s “The meeting, which lasted more than an hour, covered a number of topics, but one of the main thrusts of the discussion was Apple and its control of the mobile phone market and how the two companies could team up in the battle against Apple. A possible acquisition of Adobe by Microsoft were among the options.” Read more. Diabolical!

Undertone Opens Inventory

The ad network model is shifting! Undertone has launched a new product providing access to online display inventory from publishers throughout Undertone’s network. The company’s website elaborates on the product known as DirectConnect which “integrates with their existing buy-side technology, enabling agency executives to buy Undertone’s premium inventory electronically.” Read more.

Skyrockets In Flight, RTB Delight

Syncing with yesterday’s Ad Revenue Conference agenda, PubMatic released a new case study in collaboration with demand-side platforms (DSPs) DataXu, MediaMath, Turn, and [x+1] which it says shows “significant benefits of real-time bidding for publishers and advertisers.” According to the release and among the takeaways from the study, “RTB outperformed traditional run-of-network non-RTB media buying methods by an average of 749%.” Read more. x+1’s Eric Simon thinks the implications for publishers are much bigger than even the results show as he says on his company’s blog, “This is about publishers making their audience available to advertisers anywhere that audience goes online. When this idea is properly packaged and sold by the publisher sales force, the results double and even triple the value of the RFP responses.” Read it.

Search Privacy Suit Against Google

Jennifer Valentino-DeVries of the Wall Street Journal writes that “A former Federal Trade Commission employee (Christopher Soghoian) has filed a complaint with the agency accusing Google Inc. of not adequately protecting the privacy of consumers’ search queries.” The WSJ adds, “In his complaint, Mr. Soghoian says while employed at the FTC, he was prohibited from working on any Google-related matters.'” Read it all.

Abandoning Video

Steve Smith pulls out some stats from a recent Visible Measure study which shows, “20% of the audience for a video clip of under five minutes will abandon viewing in the first ten seconds.” Read more on the findings. But, if it’s a video of dog on a skateboard (VODOAS), viewing rates go way up.

Data Mining Menu

In what apparently is a new site from ComScore, ComScore Data Mine offers appetizers of data nuggets for the data-addicted such as this juicy morsel: “U.S. Smartphone Penetration by Age.” See the site. eMarketer is likely salivating.

What Happens In Vegas…

TARGUSinfo’s Interactive Insights Summit is next Wednesday and Thursday in Las Vegas, Nevada, and features a large contingent of data-driven media execs including Yahoo! vp and gm of display advertising, Dave Zinman, who will explore an especially topical subject considering this week’s acquisition of Dapper by Yahoo!: “Personalized Retargeting: Future or Folly?” From the Summit’s website: “Is Personalized Retargeting the next wave of high performance display advertising? Start up companies like Criteo, Dotomi, Fetchback, Tellapart and Permuto are leading the charge, but the industry leaders are getting in the game…” Yes, they are! Read the Summit’s agenda.


ContextWeb’s ADSDAQ Ad Exchange will henceforth be known as the CONTEXTWEB Ad Exchange. Adotas’ Gavin Dunaway covers the news and writes, “In addition, the company introduced a spiffy new logo and souped-up website to lure both advertisers and publishers to its real-time platform.” Read more. And, see the site.

Google Targeting TV Hardware

According to the Sony Insider blog, Sony is about to release a collection of television units known as the Sony Google TV. Sony Insider writes, “There will be a few models initally available to choose from. It looks like Sony will be offering 4 different Internet TV’s – 24′, 32′, 40′, and 46′ models.” Read more. Digital TV ad targeting isn’t just a PC-targeting game.

Akamai Employee Arrested

An Akamai employee was arrested on Tuesday and charged with a single count of wire fraud according to the Boston Globe. The employee allegedly handed over sensitive company documents and client lists to what he thought was a country that might find the information helpful in return for $3,000. According to the Boston Glove, if convicted, the employee (who seems to have the word “former” attached to “employee” in some stories) could face a $250,000 fine and 20 years in prison. Read more. And, read Mass High Tech.

Choose Your Fav Video Ad

Have you seen the new Pool video ad format ASq? Now is your chance! Click here and choose your ad. A bit of empowerment is given to the user even though they are still required to see an ad. And if you geeks get a chance, check out the URL on this link. It’s a monster. (source: Bertozzi’s blog) And, read more about the launch of The Pool in the UK on Vivaki’s Marco Bertozzi’s blog.

The Display Crystal Ball

TRAFFIQ’s Chris O’Hara says on iMedia Connection that while innovation on the demand-side has accelerate with demand-side platforms and real-time bidding, the importance of good content remains – which speaks to the future of display for publishers. O’Hara writes, “The future of display will be one in which brand advertisers use technology tools to mix audience buying and guaranteed buying — informed by search (and other) data — in the same platform.” Read more.

New Health Vertical Ad Network

Healthline, which is backed by the GE Peacock Fund among many others, announced that it has started a new vertical ad network called Healthline Media Network which will reach over 40 million U.S. uniques and, according to the release, “utilizes Healthline’s proprietary semantic taxonomy — created by doctors and continually enhanced by the Healthline team of medical informatics specialists — to dynamically map health content and deliver the most contextually relevant advertising.” Read more.

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