Forbes On Rubicon Project Consortium; M&A Talk For iCrossing; Pull Over! NAI Busts 10 Ad Networks

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Rubicon Project and GODForbes On Rubicon Project Consortium

According to a January article in Forbes, “In just two months EVP J.T. Batson has convinced 30 of the Web’s larger digital publishers to form a digital consortium where they’ll aim to sell online advertising at rates 60% to 300% higher than they do now.” Not only that, G.O.D. works at Rubicon Project. Read more here. CEO Frank Addante adds in the article, “We’re going to bring [non-Google Internet ads] together and be the platform that helps people compete against Google.” Translation: “Microsoft: Acquire this way!”

Let the M&A Begin

According to Suzanne Vranica of The Wall Street Journal, iCrossing is prepping itself to be acquired after an unsolicited, $250 million offer for the digital marketing firm from Hearst Corporation a few weeks ago. iCrossing has been a strong proponent of implementing search marketing with display. Read more.

Whiskey Drinks New Funds

PaidContent’s David Kaplan reports that Whiskey Media, run by former CNET founder and CEO, Shelby Bonnie, has raised $2.5 million from a-currently-unknown-group-of-investors. Whiskey Media is owner of a collectioin of entertainment sites: ComicVine (comics!), GiantBomb (video game reviews!) and AnimeVice (manga!). Read more.

NAI Self-Regulation

According to the Network Advertising Initiative’s (NAI) 2009 report and an NAI press release, self-regulation works as the organization identified 10 member networks who failed to comply to its data storage requirement. From the NAI report: “This requirement of retention specificity is above and beyond the NAI’s separate code requirement that OBA-related data be kept only as long as necessary to fulfill a legitimate business need, or as required by law. In response to the NAI Staff’s findings, all of the ten members have either specified their retention periods or provided a plan to do so.” Read more from ClickZ. Or, read the NAI release (PDF) and download the NAI report (PDF).

Pork Bellies, Please!

Richard Ehrenberg of IA Capital Partners has inhaled from the goblet of ad exchanges. Given his M&A, derivatives and trading background that may not be a stretch as he says on his Information Arbitrage blog, “Tomorrow’s ad exchanges will resemble the stock and options markets for equities.” He predicts “skyrocketing price efficiency.” Disclaimer: Ehrenberg’s IA Capital Partners is also an investor in Invite Media and AdSafe Media among many other digital companies. Read the post. (source: @km_blake)

Still About The Click

GigaOm’s Kevin Kelleher still thinks display is about clicks as he lays out “Google’s To-Do List for 2010.” Kelleher apparently doesn’t subscribe to the demand generation capability of display though views and writes about the challenge the new DoubleClick Ad Exchange presents, “… it’s not just about wooing new advertisers online — it’s about getting online shoppers to notice display ads again.” Read more. The click died a while ago.. but many still look at it as the key success metric no matter what they may say publicly.

Wait, It’s Not About The Click

Clearsaleing links to a recent sponsored webcast from Forrester’s Emily Riley on why the last click does NOT matter – with the importance of attribution models at its core. Listen to it here on ClickZ (sign-up required).

King Content 2010-style

Dow Jones Newswires’ Nat Worden draws the big media picture for 2010 as content owners look to drive revenues through the almighty pay wall. “Their overriding strategy is to produce premium media content in a bet that consumers are ready to pay for it online, despite the continued proliferation of free media on the Web.” Read more. Ultimately, display can still play any either scenario.

Dentsu America Shows Face

Dentsu America popped up again recently as the American arm of one of the world’s largest agency holding companies, Dentsu, announced that it has partnered with Eyeblaster to use its MediaMind ad serving technology with the purpose of increasing engagement. Read the release.

More Forecasts – Digital, Too!

AdWeek has collected together its annual forecast across channels for 2010. For the digital channel (which receives one page out of the fourteen in the AdWeek report), AdWeek’s Mike Shields shares the views of several including Brad Davis, West Coast SVP of multimedia at Disney Online who in reviewing his clients’ buying patterns says, “”We’ve really seen a mix, with some clients planning way far out in advance, as far ahead as Q4 [of 2010]. And then we’ve seen a continuation of holding onto the cash until the last minute, and then a quick release of this cash.” CASH! – poured into the needy mouths of demand-side platforms that can provide demonstrable ROI. Read more.

Display Success For “The Little Guy”

ClickZ’s Fred Aun highlights a recent AdReady success story for publisher Hidden City Games, which owns Bella Sara, a children’s entertainment site. Sub $1 acquisition costs! Due to AdReady tech, according to Aun, “Hidden City Games is now spending about $25,000 monthly on display ads, and about 40 percent of its ad budget is spent online depending on the time of year.” Read more. According to, attracted 312,000 uniques in November 2009.

Pinch Media Meets Flurry

Greg Yardley’s Pinch Media (Yardley is a former Right Media and Yahoo! APT star) and Flurry have merged according to a December 22 post on the Pinch Media blog which proclaims, “Flurry and Pinch Media are the biggest companies out there doing mobile application analytics, and now that we’re combining, we’ve got a dominant position in this exploding space.” Read more.

The Quantcast Bridge

MIT Technology Review’s Erika Jonietz says that content companies still struggle with the fixed costs of content creation as “… no existing information source has succeeded in giving advertisers the confidence to increase their investment in online advertising.” Jonietz identifies companies such as Quantcast which she believes are bridging the online ad perception shortfall. Read more.

Sharpening Software

Even ages-old articles on the web can still remain relevant to the software development community as proven by this detailed, 2001 article from the software engineering group, IEEE, and Robert Glass, “Frequently Forgotten Fundamental Facts about Software Engineering.” Learn more. (source: @natsturner)