Google CFO Ruth Porat Undaunted By Antitrust Suits; Amazon Scores With NFL Deal

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Bring It, Joe 

Google is certainly going through the ringer this week, especially with a House judiciary antitrust subcommittee hearing that will look into whether laws should be bolstered  to better address monopoly power. But apparently the increased regulator pressure is nothing new. That’s what Google’s Chief Financial Officer Ruth Porat said anyway, and downplayed the threat of antitrust enforcement in an interview with Yahoo Finance. While she vowed that the company will "constructively engage" with regulators, Porat reiterated Google’s usual response to critics: Users choose Google because it's a strong product, not because they lack alternatives. With President Joe Biden’s administration and lawmakers leaning heavily on Google — don’t worry, Facebook and Amazon are in that mix, too — what does Google think about the antitrust threats and the recent additions to the Biden administration? "This is not new for Google,” Porat said. "There have been inquiries around the globe over time,” she said. “Our approach has been to constructively engage with regulators. Our view is that people come to Google not because they have to — but because they want to." [Related in AdExchanger: Biden’s FTC Will Be Proactive About Antitrust Enforcement]

Streaming Touchdown

Amazon has clinched a deal with the National Football League for the exclusive rights to “Thursday Night Football” on Prime beginning in 2023, bolstering its value proposition in the streaming wars. The Wall Street Journal reports that it marks Amazon’s biggest play to date in streaming, with the company paying an average annual fee of about $1 billion for the rights to the games. Amazon will take over “Thursday Night Football” from Fox Corp, and though it currently streams simulcasts of the games, the new deal could help it secure a commanding position in the future of TV ad sales. The NFL reached new media rights deals to the tune of $105 billion that could open up ecommerce opportunities and more data and consumer activity, according to Ad Age. [Related in AdExchanger: Advertising And Audience Complicate The NFL’s Entry Into Streaming]

Different Tune

Facebook is certainly changing its tune this week. First, the company did an about face in Australia when it reached a deal with Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp Australia to pay for news content. And now, after Apple's imminent privacy changes sparked the ire of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the Zuck doesn’t appear so sore anymore. Per Business Insider, Zuckerberg said that Apple’s IDFA changes on iOS14 — which will force app developers like Facebook to ask users for permission before tracking them — could leave Facebook in a "stronger position.” He expressed confidence that the company would get by, particularly because the changes could encourage sellers to sell directly via Facebook's commerce products, as targeted advertising on the platform was rendered less effective. The new comments come after a very public spat between Facebook and Apple over the upcoming changes, when Facebook said the update could decimate part of its advertising business. Still, Zuck said that the changes are going to make it harder for small businesses and developers. Read on

But Wait, There’s More!

Fox taps Operative Media for its next-gen AOS product suite. [release]

Apple has given three Chinese developers a 14-day deadline to disable CAID in their apps or face removal from the App Store, according to analyst Eric Seufert. [Twitter]

The ad world is responding to the hate crimes against the Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islander communities following shootings in Asian massage parlors in Atlanta that left eight people dead. [Ad Age]

Penske Media is eyeing data studio PMC Atlas Data Studio as a way to drive more portfolio-wide selling. [Digiday]

You’re Hired 

Quartz has named Bob Maund as its new VP of partnerships. [Editor & Publisher]

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