Header Bidding Etymology; GDPR Reckoning Looms

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An oral history of how the term “header bidding” was cemented in the market underscores the absurdity of ad tech jargon – but also its necessity. When AdExchanger first covered the topic two years ago, terms like “pre-bidding,” “tagless” and “advanced bidding” were being used interchangeably. “Figuring out what to call it certainly helped adoption, no doubt about it,” Jonathan Mendez, CEO of Yieldbot, tells Digiday. Programmatic consultant Matt Prohaska says, “Having one term helped tech firms rally around one transaction type and integration, it helped sellers explain what it is and it helped buyers explain what they wanted to do.” Everyone should just be grateful it’s not another three-letter acronym. More.

GDPR Looms

Europe’s new data consent rules pose a special challenge to tech companies that lack direct consumer relationships. “The ad tech companies are in a particularly difficult position,” IAB Europe CEO Townsend Feehan tells The Wall Street Journal. “They are going to be dependent on the publishers to get that consent for them.” Of course, it’s not only the ad tech sector that must prepare for the new privacy regime. GroupM, Axciom, Havas and others all have task forces focused working on it. More. The rules take effect next May.

Picking Up The Bill

A Canadian parliamentary committee suggested a 5% tax on broadband streaming video providers last Thursday, but the idea was shot down by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The committee “has spent more than a year studying the industry, which has been steadily losing advertising revenue and market shares to online giants such as Facebook, Netflix and Google,” reports CBC news. This is just the latest in a drumbeat of national tax policy overhauls meant to extract more revenue from Silicon Valley. Apple was forced to begin manufacturing iPhones in India, and in Europe, physical data centers are being erected country by country to meet new standards.

IOC You Later

McDonald’s will end its 41-year relationship with the International Olympic Committee after the 2018 winter games in PyeongChang, South Korea. “I kinda picked that up about a year ago, just kind of unhappiness on both sides,” Olympic marketing expert Rob Prazmark tells Olympic coverage site Around The Rings. McDonald’s is the most notable in a string of recent US companies to ditch their Olympics contracts, joining Budweiser, Citi, Hilton, AT&T and TD Ameritrade. The exodus speaks to the challenges digital video and live-streaming pose for the broadcast ad industry’s single biggest tent pole. Exclusivity is impossible to maintain when a rival can promote an athlete’s tweets, grams and snaps from the event, and TV numbers are fracturing into channels and screens with poor measurement (NBC missed its Olympic ratings guarantees in 2016). All eyes will be on Coca-Cola, which is signed through 2020 but has sponsored every Olympic Games since 1928. More at Ad Age.


Doc Searls writes in a Medium post that “publishers’ and advertisers’ rights end at a browser’s front door.” He argues that readers don’t so much “visit” a site as tell their browsers to submit a “request” via the http protocol for a publisher to display a page (and, in theory, nothing more). “Sure, some of ad tech’s surveillance is meant to give us a ‘better advertising experience’ or whatever,” Searls says. “But that’s beside the main point: It breaks both the letter and the spirit of hypertext protocol.” More.

But Wait, There’s More!

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