When Facebook Bought Atlas; New Tracking Tech From Google

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When Facebook Bought Atlas

Buried in a Medium piece on ad-tech plumbing, self-proclaimed “FBX creator” Antonio Garcia (who has left Facebook) recounts the internal reaction when the Atlas deal went down. “All the product managers involved ran to the IT Help Desk to get a Windows laptop to check out this thing we were supposedly buying. Believe it or not, Microsoft’s Atlas only ran on specific versions of Internet Explorer… It was creaky and ancient, and possessed a flow so convoluted even professional ads people got lost in the mess.” But Garcia says people confused by the purchase are missing the point. “For a modest sum, Facebook jumpstarted a presence in the display ads world in which we were an afterthought.” More.

New Tracking Tech From Google

Google is working on a new tracking tech for advertising (AdID) that could be a cookie successor, a source tells USA Today. “The new tool will give users the ability to limit ad tracking through browser settings.” Unclear: Will this be limited to Chrome and its approximately 36% browser market share. A Google rep confirms, sort of: “We believe that technological enhancements can improve users’ security while ensuring the Web remains economically viable. We and others have a number of concepts in this area, but they’re all at very early stages.” More. Unrelated(?): The Digital Advertising Alliance quit the Do Not Track group today and announced plans to work with browsers on new choice mechanisms.

Do Not Track California

California is enacting a new law that requires websites to disclose how they respond to “do-not-track” signals sent by a computer. According to Jeremy Mittman at Proskauer, the legislation also requires the sites to disclose whether or not other parties collect personally identifiable information. Regardless of whether the Web company operates in California, it will have to update the privacy policy to reflect these changes. Read more.

Tracking Acronyms

There’s a new acronym in town and it’s privacy-related: TaaS, or transparency as a service. Enliken announced its plan to launch a new set of tools that will inform consumers about the data being collected so that they can be more comfortable with tracking. The platform will work with CRM and cookie data. Read more. The new product comes after Enliken released its thoughts on consumer sentiment as it pertains to privacy. After surveying 600 people about their profiles from five companies, they found that only nine data points were rated as sensitive. Read the post here.

More Than Programmatic

Doug Weaver, founder and CEO of Upstream Group, offers his thoughts on programmatic in a post on The Drift blog, echoing what he said at AdExchanger’s Programmatic I/O conference. Although he feels programmatic may be a significant part of the advertising future, companies need to put a lot more thought into advertising than just a “dump it and leave it” mindset for impressions. He writes, “It comes down to will, commitment and leadership.” Read more.

Twitter’s Simplicity Problem

Twitter’s advertising approach has worked for the company so far, but if it wants to continue making big gains it will have to diversify. As Vindu Goel at The New York Times points out, Twitter has mainly focused on big businesses and limited data sets. This puts the company at a disadvantage against its social rival, Facebook, which relies on highly targeted and diverse ads. The MoPub acquisition is a huge step up for Twitter and a sign of things to come. Read more.

More Trust

Nielsen has found that consumer trust in advertising is on the rise after comparing data from 2007 and 2013. Even trust in banners ads has increased. “Brand marketers should be especially encouraged to find owned advertising among the most trusted marketing formats,” said Randall Beard, global head, advertiser solutions at Nielsen. “This form of advertising is trusted by nearly 70 percent of consumers globally.” Read more.

Microsoft Playing Catch-Up

Microsoft always seems to be late to the mobile party, at least according to Matt Asay, VP of BD and corporate strategy at MongoDB, writing for ReadWrite. First, the company tried a horizontal strategy of licensing out its software, and then Apple got big doing the exact opposite, enacting a vertical strategy. Now, Microsoft is switching to a vertical strategy by buying up Nokia and developing its own hardware, only to see Google make huge strides using a horizontal strategy. Microsoft still has a huge market share in enterprise software — Perhaps it should focus its attention on bringing that to the mobile table. Read more.

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