W3C Pushed To Lobby Developers; Google Slapped With A Fine

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W3C Meets Ad Tech Drama

The W3C is negotiating a tricky influx of members and attention as it becomes an increasingly important stakeholder in online advertising. That’s because browser operators like Chrome, Apple’s Safari WebKit group, Microsoft Edge and Mozilla are the W3C natives, and are asserting more control over digital advertising by disabling cookies and web tracking with default ad-blocking tools. Of late, ad tech companies, web publishers and data vendors have flooded the W3C (the Improving Web Advertising Business Group, in particular) to lobby browser developers. There’s simmering tension in these working groups. Ad tech and publisher advocates are frustrated because they don’t have real power to affect change, and can only voice their opinions. All these new dues-paying W3C members also change its composition, just like when the IAB changed from a publisher-first trade body to one that represented all online advertising constituents. So browser developers and privacy advocates need to work harder to elevate their opinions. The W3C’s spirit of transparency, with precise public minutes and recordings, also spices things up. IAB disputes happened mostly in discrete meeting rooms, whereas W3C feuds are aired like dirty laundry. Protocol has more.

Pay The Newsies

Google was supposed to work out deals with French new publishers when it showed snippets of their articles in search results. But it didn’t. So France’s competition authority fined Google $593 million for the violation and ordered it to strike deals with news publishers. Recently, Google has inked deals with Le Figaro and Le Monde, but not with Agence France-Presse. Google told The Wall Street Journal it was “disappointed” with the decision and had acted in “good faith.” Australia passed a similar law in February that requires Google and Facebook to pay publishers when news content appears on their platforms.


Data-driven optimizers are finding reasons to prefer diversity- and inclusivity-themed ads over traditional stock imagery. According to data from Clear Channel and JCDecaux, two large OOH ad operators, in a test using the gum brand Trident and auto company Buick, ads with diverse models and inclusive messaging saw a 21% improvement in purchase intent following the campaigns, Campaign reports. “Brands should get some attitude and not just plan on physical demographics,” according to Jennie Roper, head of insight at the OOH agency Kinetic. “Inclusive marketing isn’t just the right thing to do, it also drives purchasing intent and unlocks the spending power of, currently, largely ignored audiences in advertising.”

But Wait, There’s More!  

Sharethrough launched dynamic video captions for programmatic video ads. [release]

Facebook’s ad targeting is buoyed by Apple’s iOS 14.5 AppTrackingTransparency framework. [MediaPost]

NBC tapped ad server Innovid for ad management and measurement services during the Tokyo Olympics. [release]

Tribeca Enterprises acquired creative brand studio M ss ng P eces. [release]

Federated Learning: the next big step ahead for data sharing [Medium]

Brands are proceeding with caution following a Supreme Court ruling on NCAA athlete sponsorships. [The Drum]

You’re Hired

Mediastruction appointed Jenna Umbrianna as partner and Chief Development Architect. [release]

Facebook hired former ACLU attorney Manar Waheed to join its Civil Rights Team. [Law360]

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