Undisclosed Facebook Ads Return; Ad Trackers Quantified

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Moore Shady Facebook Ads

Alabama residents were being targeted with partisan Facebook ads leading up to Tuesday’s divisive Senate election. And despite tightening its standards around political ad disclosures earlier this fall, Facebook isn’t giving a lot of information about where those ads were coming from. Purchased by pro-Trump PAC America First Action, the ads targeted Alabamians with pro-Moore ads without disclosing any identifying information about the group, like where it’s located, The Daily Beast reports. More. But in other places, Facebook’s crackdown on partisan news seems to be working. Bloomberg profiles fake news publisher Cyrus Massoumi, who saw traffic and revenue plummet after Facebook began penalizing low-quality, partisan-fueled clickbait. Read it.

Watching You

Ghostery released a study that shows that trackers owned by Google and Facebook dominate websites across the internet. While this revelation may not be particularly surprising to ad industry insiders, it quantifies the extent to which Google and Facebook dominate online tracking. For instance, 46% of all page loads have trackers from Google Analytics and 21.9% have trackers from Facebook Connect. DoubleClick, Google Publisher Tags and Google Tag Manager are also on the list, with nearly one-third of websites in the study containing a hidden Facebook tracker. Read Axios for more.

Think Local, Act Global

Facebook is moving to a local selling model for collecting and reporting ad sales. “Local teams will no longer be recorded by our international headquarters in Dublin, but will instead be recorded by our local company in that country,” writes Facebook CFO Dave Wehner in a blog post. It’s a major investment in resources and organizational overhaul, Wehner says, but the new structure “will provide more transparency to governments and policy makers around the world who have called for greater visibility.” The company hopes to complete the changes worldwide by the first half of 2019 (but you can bet the updates will be in place in Europe by the middle of next year).

The Early Birds

Will Twitter’s nestful of young broadcast news programs ever take flight? It’s too soon to tell, but for now, they’re starting to flap their wings. And publishers are enthusiastically going out on a limb. BuzzFeed, which in September launched a live-streaming news show on Twitter called “AM to DM,” elevated roles related to show producing. The goal, wrote BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith in a memo, is “to be ready to take advantage of the huge opportunities … in this new landscape.” Other publishers also see opportunity for live news on Twitter. Cheddar, a social-based business network, named digital journalism vet Jim Roberts as its editor-in-chief and added a breaking news team. And beginning next Monday, Bloomberg and Twitter will go live with TicToc, a 24-hour social and OTT news channel. More on Variety.

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