Podcast | The Big Story

The Big Story Podcast

Our new weekly podcast, hosted by the AdExchanger editorial team, will feature roundtable discussion on the week’s top news stories.

New and previously published episodes will be available on this page.  Additionally, listeners can easily subscribe via the channels below.


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Will Google Reopen YouTube? – E199

Google may open up YouTube to outside programmatic demand as a bargaining chip to EU regulators. And a looming recession won’t deflate digital advertising – although don’t expect pandemic-level growth.

The Signals, They Are A-Changin’ – E198

After Apple’s WWDC, the company’s next step will be to clamp down on fingerprinting … the question is, when? Plus, industry orgs struggle to build a path forward with new signals.

It’s A Party (First And Third) -E197

We read between the lines of Google’s progress report to the UK’s antitrust regulator on its plan to remove third-party cookies from Chrome. Could Google miss its own self-imposed 2023 deadline? “Signs point to yes.”

Attribution Evolves, Media Networks Explode – 195

We evaluate the new crop of attribution and analytics companies rising from the ashes of multitouch attribution. Plus, is Marriott’s entrance into the ads business a sign that we’ve reached peak media network – or is it just the beginning?

Mega Mergers – E175

Vox Media buying Group Nine Media is the latest media mega merger to watch. Plus, Criteo buys IPONWEB. Both acquisitions are part of a strategy to find space unoccupied by Big Tech (and impervious to the demise of third-party cookies).

BuzzFeed Goes Public – E174

BuzzFeed’s debut on the public market disappointed, but its advertising business is growing (and it’s planning more acquisitions). Plus, digital advertising in 2021 grew faster than it has in the history of advertising. We explain why.

A Lackluster Big Friday – E173

Black Friday didn’t have its “best year ever.” We get into the supply-chain issues and consumer-behavior changes behind the shift. Plus, how UK antitrust investigators are gaining oversight over Google’s Privacy Sandbox.

Zoom Ads And Apple’s App Ad Budget – E172

The antitrust angle to Apple buying ads for apps with high subscription revenue, how Zoom’s advertising play could develop and why Unified ID 2.0 still hasn’t started testing in Europe.

McFirst-Party Data – E171

Big Macs, Oreos and Heinz all have something in common: They’re using a combination of celebrity endorsements, big creative budgets and gimmicks to entice consumers to share their first-party data. Plus: Why digital advertising could be left hanging by the IAB’s public policy power vacuum.

The DTC POV On Identity Loss – E170

To understand how direct-to-consumer marketers are handling the loss of identity signals online, special guest Chip Malt, CEO of the cookware brand Made In, shares his take on testing UID 2.0  –  and even pursuing identity-less radio – to adapt.

Big Tech Secrets – E169

The business practices of both Facebook and Google came to light in unflattering ways over the past week. We go over highlights from The Facebook Papers and the recently released unredacted antitrust complaint against Google released. Plus: A recap of AdExchanger’s Programmatic IO conference in NYC.

The Mobile Consolidation Paradox – E168

Even though Apple is putting stress on the app advertising ecosystem, mobile ad tech companies are consolidating at breakneck speed and with eye-popping valuations. Guess it’s finally the “year of mobile” as an increased focus on privacy triggers an uptick in M&A.

Facebook’s Attribution Sinkhole – E167

As Facebook faces a growing attribution sinkhole due to Apple’s ATT prompt, the lack of data is prompting big changes in how marketers design campaigns, and the granularity with which they can target or do creative versioning.

The Facebook Whistleblower – E166

If Facebook chose profits over safety, as the Facebook whistleblower alleges, what does that mean for advertisers? Plus: potential marketing repercussions from Facebook’s outage.

The Rise Of CDPs And The End Of Last-Click Attribution – E165

We discuss the rise of CDPs and the decline of two other marketing stalwarts: last-click attribution and Nielsen as the currency for linear TV buys. In all three areas, opportunity is knocking, as new tech and new companies seek to replace aging tech and measurement standards.

Everyone’s Launching An Ads Business – E164

BuzzFeed’s debut on the public market disappointed, but its advertising business is growing (and it’s planning more acquisitions). Plus, digital advertising in 2021 grew faster than it has in the history of advertising. We explain why.

The TransUnion-Neustar Identity Mash-Up – E163

Explore the logic behind TransUnion’s $3.1 billion acquisition of Neustar, an identity resolution company with caller ID roots – and why it would catch the eye of a credit reporting agency. Plus, Apple’s victory in the Epic Games lawsuit and what marketers need to know about the privacy features in iOS 15.

Amazon TVs – E162

Amazon TVs could lead to better attribution, more scale and intensify the already white-hot competition in the CTV space. Plus: Sen. Elizabeth Warren urges the antitrust investigation against Google onward with a focus on the “Jedi Blue” deal between Facebook and Google.

The Great (Or Not-So-Great) Chinese Privacy Law – E161

China’s new privacy law, PIPL, might look similar to GDPR – but it’s got a few twists global marketers will need to pay attention to. Plus: Why Mediaocean switched private equity owners, and unpacking Freestar’s acquisition of Sortable.

Will The Stock Market Mint Ad Tech Millionaires? – E160

To untangle all the M&A, IPOs and SPACs in ad tech, banker and COO of Progress Partners Domenic Venuto shares his perspective, including why Trade Desk is a “golden child” for investors and the trick to evaluating a promising SPAC.

TV Drama And Business Data – E159

It must be sweeps week, because TV drama is through the roof. AdExchanger is here for it though, with a healthy mix of news reporting on loose speculation about the fate of TV’s longstanding ad currency.

Ad Tech Meets Wall Street – E158

Wall Street can’t get enough of ad tech. We talk through The Trade Desk’s earnings, how it fared compared to independent ad tech and Big Tech, and why CTV ad servers became such hot acquisition targets.

CPG Companies Make Post-Pandemic Plans – E157

A handful of challenger search engines are taking on Google with promises of privacy and security. Plus, why ecommerce and first-party data are key themes for CPG companies a year after the pandemic unleashed massive consumer behavior changes.

A Supply Shortage In Programmatic CTV – E156

A guest from the front lines of connected TV ad buying – Omnicom’s Kelly Metz – shares why a record TV upfront will lead to a “wild Q4” as programmatic buyers scramble for access to streaming inventory. Plus, we unpack the Olympics streaming experience.

Antitrust And Acquisitions – E155

Could Xandr attract the eye of InMobi as it prepares an IPO? We discuss AT&T’s reported plans to sell Xandr and offer a primer on Big Tech’s new foe, Jonathan Kanter, the nominee to lead antitrust actions at the Department of Justice.

Identity Preppers – E154

How do email-based IDs, the Privacy Sandbox and first-party data rank in terms of privacy? And which cookie alternatives are attracting marketer test budgets? Listen to the highlights of AdExchanger’s latest research report on identity. In the second half, we talk through the Flashtalking-Mediaocean deal, as ad tech becomes a field of unicorns.

TTD Does VC, And The Mystery of CTV – E153

The Trade Desk made waves this week with the launch of its new DSP dashboard, called Solimar, and a venture capital arm. The company’s first investment is in Chalice Custom Algorithms. And we examine where all the supply of programmatic CTV ads are coming from, when so much of the content is ad-free or locked behind walled gardens. AdExchanger is joined by special guest Ana Milicevic for this week’s discussion.

The Winners And Losers Of The Cookie Delay – E152

When Google extended its third-party cookie removal deadline, many were relieved. But the extension will create winners (Google, public ad tech stocks) and losers (consumers). Featuring a special guest from the ad tech front lines, Matt Barash of Zeotap.

Google’s Third-Party Cookie Extension – E151

Third-party cookies live (another two years, that is). Google Chrome moved back the deadline for third-party cookies’ demise. We talk about why Google made that decision. Plus, we dive into the “sprawling, mysterious empire” that is Amazon’s ad business.

Could Regulators Keep Third-Party Cookies Alive? – E150

Ad agencies are pulling data from warehousing and fulfillment companies to support more dynamic ads (featuring products in stock and easy to ship). We dissect this trend, as well as Google’s agreement to let the CMA sign off on its decision to remove cookies from Chrome. The arrangement sets a precedent for the future of regulation.

The End Of IP Address Targeting – E149

Apple said it will pull IP addresses from Safari and its Mail app at its Worldwide Developer Conference this week, raising the privacy bar to new heights. But at what cost to ad tech?

Methbot Ad Fraudster Goes To Prison – E148

The architect of Methbot was found guilty in a New York court last week. In this episode, we dive into the most intriguing details of the case – and what it means for the rest of the programmatic advertising industry as it continues to fight the good (and ongoing) fight against the scourge of ad fraud. We also talk about Tapad pulling out of Europe, and how GDPR has made cross-device identification a legally fraught business model.

Apple’s Epic Battle (And The Ghost Of iAd) – E147

Big Tech is fending off antitrust and monopoly accusations left and right. This week, we discuss Epic’s lawsuit against Apple. There’s also a larger narrative against Big Tech that’s taking hold, which we discuss, including what soon-to-be-confirmed FTC commissioner Lina Khan has already said publicly that alludes to this case.

WarnerMedia-Discovery Merger And CTV’s Complex Supply Chain – E146

During this live taping of The Big Story at AdExchanger Innovation Labs, the team discusses Xandr’s prospects at AT&T now that WarnerMedia is being spun off and combining with Discovery. We also get into privacy in connected TV, and how supply path optimization on CTV is already a thing.

What’s The Forecast For The Trade Desk Stock? – E145

Wall Street proved a fickle friend to ad tech on Monday, when tech stocks dipped – The Trade Desk among them. We discuss Wall Street’s bets on ad tech, the prospect of further ad tech M&A and ad tech talent seeking refuge in walled gardens.

Hanging Up On Ad Tech, Tuning Into CTV – E144

Private equity firm Apollo Global Management’s $5 billion acquisition of Verizon Media from Verizon is evidence that telcos, ad tech and media wasn’t the delicious cocktail that was promised. The team dives into why. Also in this episode: the CTV gold rush and observations from the frontlines of the NewFronts. (It’s all about streaming, baby.)

SOS! It’s iOS 14.5! – E143

After months of anticipation, Apple will start enforcing ATT with the debut of iOS 14.5.

This week on The Big Story, the team litigates not just the binary coverage from the mainstream media that will influence the public conversation, we’ll also try to unpack what Apple is actually doing.

The Complexity Of Commerce, The Commencement Of Apple’s ATT Enforcement – E142

In this week’s episode, the team broadcasts LIVE from AdExchanger’s Innovation Labs: Commerce Day event. And here’s your main takeaway if you weren’t able to attend: the fragmentation in the world of commerce-related media is … insane.

Also, Apple finally announced-without-announcing that enforcement of its AppTrackingTransparency framework is coming next week with the release of iOS 14.5. We’ll tell you what that means.

The Confusion Around Project Bernanke – E141

When the Wall Street Journal exposed Google’s secret Project Bernanke, it confirmed what publishers already knew: that Google used publisher ad server data to advantage its own buying systems. Those are the broader strokes – but the specifics are still vague. In this episode, we’ll talk about what we know, what we don’t know, and who was harmed by Google’s decision.

Unicorns Everywhere – E140

This week, ad tech is a field full of unicorns. Luma’s cautious optimism around the state of deal making late last year bore serious fruit Q1 2021, with seven deals clocking over $1 billion. The team welcomes Luma director Conor McKenna to talk about what’s going on.

Why TripleLift Went With Vista, And How It Will Crack CTV – E139

Why did TripleLift go with Vista? And how will it establish itself in the hyper-competitive CTV market? All this and more as the AdExchanger team speaks with TripleLift cofounder and chief strategy officer Ari Lewine.

FLoC’s European Vacation – E138

Will FLoCs fly in Europe or will the GDPR clip its wings? And speaking of birds (and identifiers), NBCU’s Peacock is going programmatic – and the broadcaster also revealed a new identifier for advertisers to use.

Don’t Microwave Fish – E137

This week, we recorded The Big Story LIVE at AdExchanger’s Innovation Lab: Identity Edition. In this episode, the team gives you the bigger picture on the current identity landscape – and the specific challenges that await. Can ID resolution solutions co-exist with each other – and with Google’s Privacy Sandbox? Are the solutions coming out of the sandbox, like FLoCs, actually privacy compliant?

Tune in for all this and more.

Unified! – E136

This week, we’ll check in with Unified ID 2.0, the most promising online identity initiative coming out of indie ad tech. No longer a grand ambition, it’s now being put into practice and has to take into account the real world, practical challenges the online ad industry is facing. Where is it today, and where does it need to go?

Google. Roku. Disney. – E135

Google said no ad sales based on cross-site browsing, and no to email-based IDs. Disney says yes to ad tech. Roku says yes to Dynamic Ad Insertion. Nielsen gets a hefty load of audience data.

Consumer Privacy Is Virginia Territory – E134

We break down Virginia’s new privacy bill that will soon become Virginia’s new privacy law. Admittedly, privacy legislation is the Brussels sprouts (Or pick some other vegetable you don’t like) of the digital advertising world, so we prevent this week’s info-dump in scintillating True-False format.

Tax Time! – E133

Digital ad tax time in Maryland. It sounds good, but is it? Also, why did iHeartMedia buy Triton Digital? And what does that purchase say about the digital audio landscape?

E132 – Changes In Exchanges

This week’s episode has been brought to you by the letters M and A. That’s right, it’s merger and acquisition week on The Big Story, with the exchange Magnite acquiring SpotX, as well as Sharethrough and District M merging. What do these combos have in common? How are they different? Listen in to find out. Also, we’ll give our POV on the Wall Street frothiness around ad tech. Which seems to be highly cyclical.

E131 – Four Platforms Walk Into A Bar; Jeff Bezos Walks Out

Big tech platform extravaganza in this episode. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos is leaving. Advertisers are returning to Google. And we’ll look at the latest in the Facebook-Apple pissing match.

E130 – What We FLoC About When We FLoC About Google 

Flashtalking CEO John Nardone stops by to talk about the latest ballyhoo around FLoC. Hey, it performs about as well as cookie-based targeting (sez Google). We’ll try to interpret what Google means by that – and how FLoCs might play into its greater strategy. Also, we’ll examine Google’s plans in light of the Apple IDFA restrictions, and what’s with Google’s “anti-fingerprinting” proposal gnatcatcher?

E129 – Must CTV

Mike Baker, former CEO of dataxu (which sold to Roku in 2019) drops by to talk with the team about the transformation of TV in 2021. We’ll discuss why CTV ad dollars haven’t matched the surge in viewership yet, the challenges around transparency and managing the UX, and how ad buyers should deal with the fragmented landscape.

We’ll also zoom out and look at the bigger picture – like the challenges traditional broadcasters face as they reorg around streaming, and what other ad tech companies might be good buys for TV companies.

E128 – Trump, Deplatformed

The tech world’s decision to no longer host Trump underscores its singular role determining what messages are heard and amplified, and the fact that so many smaller tech companies quickly emulated the decisions of Google, Apple and Facebook epitomize the influence the major tech platforms hold across the entire industry.

E127 – The Ad Industry’s Long Road Ahead

In this episode, recorded before the insurrection at the US Capitol, the AdExchanger looks at where the ad industry ended up in 2020, and where it needs to go in 2021.

E126 – Google And Facebook Under The Mistletoe? 

This week, we’ll discuss how ten state Attorneys General saw Google kissing Facebook under the mistletoe for the past couple of years. We’ll also unwrap a few more presents the AGs had for Google in its lawsuit filed last week.

E125 – Facebook And Google Vs. America

In this episode, the team talks about the lawsuits against Facebook, revealed last week, and against which was uncorked Thursday. This podcast was recorded before 10 state AGs revealed their full lawsuit against Google, but we’ll touch on what we knew at the time.

Primarily, we’ll dive deep into Facebook’s legal problems. And we’ll also touch on its ongoing conflict with Apple.

E124 – Currently, On Currency

Whoa, Nielsen is gonna relaunch its currency by 2024, so it’ll be able to measure across streaming, linear and online. That’s a heady initiative and there’s a lot of work ahead. In this episode, Scott Brown, GM of audience measurement at Nielsen, drops by to talk about what Nielsen is trying to do, and what it needs in order to get there.

E123 – Well, It Could’ve Been Worse

This week, GroupM’s global president of business intelligence Brian Wieser swings by to talk about the media unit’s ad spend forecast for the United States.

No V-shaped recovery, unfortunately, but no L-shaped recovery either. Instead, we split the difference and got a K-shaped curve, where some industries are coming back strong and others, like travel and tourism, are going to be down for a while yet.

We’ll also talk about the impact the pandemic has had on the triopoly, the publisher community at large, and the future of TV.

E122 – M&A Gravy

It was a cold first half of the year, but strategic M&A is starting to pick back up. See: Experian’s acquisition of Tapad from Telenor and Near’s purchase of fellow location data company Teemo. But what about potential privacy concerns? Also in this episode: The trend toward corporate social responsibility in the supply chain.

E121 – The Election Is Over! (Someone Tell Trump)

Joe Biden won, but voting in America has forever changed, from dealing with disinformation to grassroots campaigning going virtual. In this episode, we welcome guest Mike Schneider, a partner at Bully Pulpit Interactive (the Biden agency that helped with the mobilization effort) to walk us through Biden’s victory, and how advertising during this election differed from all others.  Also, we’ll talk about the latest Facebook mishap, this one around a conversion lift metric gone awry – but only for a short while in August. Another part of the problem was that Facebook didn’t let its advertiser clients know until November.

E120 – Measure For Addressable Measure

This week on The Big Story, we talk about measurement. Wait, don’t go. We’re going to dive into the topic of measurement by focusing on two exciting new areas: podcasting and addressable TV. This week, Spotify bought podcast ad tech company Megaphone, and Nielsen is updating its TV ad currency by adding non-panel data for the first time ever.

E119 – Decision 2020 – CPRA, And Also That Other Thing

Oh God, will this election never end? This week on The Big Story, we get into That, and how the results whatever they might be at the time of writing, might potentially impact paid media. Will a Biden win make politics boring again, causing news publications to lose audience? Also in this episode: CPRA passes in California.

E118 – The Birds

The ad industry is hard at work resolving the future of identity, but in this week’s spook-tastic show, publishers sense a scary presence awaiting them down the hall: new forms of data leakage! In this week’s episode, special guest CafeMedia’s Paul Bannister offers a word of caution on how these new solutions might be privacy safe for consumers, but compromise publishers. And speaking of identity, the AdExchanger team breaks down the new partnership between The Trade Desk and LiveRamp – and what it all means.

E117 – FloC Yes!

The DOJ’s case against Google zeroes in on search – so what happens next? And how is the ad tech community responding to this narrow purview? Also, what the FLoC is happening at the W3C? Google recently completed a test of its cohort-based targeting proposal. The team talks early results and gets into what still needs to be done.

E116 – CDPs Get Real

Check the price tag: $3.2 billion (in stock). That’s how much Twilio paid to grab the CDP Segment earlier this week. On this episode of The Big Story, we’ll talk about the CDP landscape and what makes it exciting with our special guest: Forrester VP and principal analyst Joe Stanhope.

E115 – Trust And Antitrust

M&A activity emerged from its slumber in Q3, and we’ll find out why with special guest, and LUMA VP, Conor McKenna. Also, we’ll contextualize the House subcommittee’s antitrust report on the business practices of the big tech platforms. What does it mean and where do we go from here?

E114 – Keyed In

What the dove is Dovekey, and what does it mean for the future of identity in Chrome? Meanwhile, in California, the CCPA is in full swing, and while the state AG hasn’t brought the hammer down on anyone yet, it’s serving notices and taking names. Also: why didn’t TrueX find its Prince Charming in Disney?

E113 – In Other News

With the ongoing pandemic, third-party cookies on their way out in Chrome and IDFA changes on the horizon, it’s easy to forget that there are actually other things happening in the advertising world. We dig into them this week with special guest Ana Milicevic of Sparrow Advisors, getting into everything from antitrust and data quality to algorithmic bias and creativity in ad sales.

E112 – Mr. Google Goes To Washington

We’ve been talking so much these days about Google and identity that we’ve neglected getting into the other big Google story: antitrust. Congress dragged Google back to Washington again this week (virtually, at least) to examine about how its business impacts the competition. 

E111 – The More Things Change …

The digital advertising world is changing faster than the seasons. The IAB has a new CEO, Facebook will soon start limiting how many ads a page can run … and the planned Taboola/Outbrain merger? Yeah, well, it’s off.

E110 – Rolling With The Punches

Even the biggest companies need to prepare for Apple’s IDFA changes – and that includes Google. The team gets into the weeds on Google’s iOS 14 prep plans and shoots the breeze on Xandr’s fall from grace now that it appears AT&T is looking to sell its once-darling ad tech unit.

E109 – Reality Checks

U of Digital Founder Shiv Gupta joins as a guest to share advice on how publishers, marketers and agencies can cut through the ad tech BS jargon and get at the truth. Also in this episode, we get into the weeds on how Facebook is planning to deal with Apple’s IDFA restrictions coming up in iOS 14.

E108 – Identity Earthquake

It’s the dog days of summer. The afternoons are sultry and the pace is slow. Ice cubes melt and tinkle in glasses, cats nap under porches … and it’s easy to forget that the earth is shifting and splitting under the ad industry’s feet.

E107 – Cookies And Creamed

The team dives into why LiveRamp saw growth while others didn’t. What is in LiveRamp’s milkshake that causes advertisers to keep investing despite having fallen onto hard times? We’ll also quickly check in on The Trade Desk, the other publicly traded ad tech darling, which reported earnings last Friday. And then stay tuned for the latest in W3C drama

E106 – Is It Safe To Come Out Now?

It’s been quite the news cycle. Microsoft might buy TikTok. Facebook is still a money-making machine (but look out, IDFA is coming). Google’s ad revenue dropped for the first time in the company’s history. And the in-housing trend is here to stay. Never a dull moment in the ad industry.

E105 – If CMPs Entice Thee, Shalt Thou Consent?

CMPs are hot in the headlines right now, given data privacy legislation, such as the GDPR in Europe and the CCPA in California – but are CMPs all they’re cracked up to be? They are, but it depends on client expectations. Also in this episode: A rapid-fire rundown on earnings reports from McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, American Airlines, Delta, Publicis, the holding companies and everyone’s favorite retargeter, Criteo.

E104 – Apple Vs. Facebook

Once Apple’s IDFA becomes opt-in for consumers, its utility to advertisers will be greatly limited. But what does this new policy mean for Facebook and its powerful, lucrative Audience Network?

E103 – COVID Spikes, Google Rises, Amazon Falls And The Trade Desk Sits Pretty

As the coronavirus spikes across America, we’ll look into how three very different brands – Bayer, Pandora Jewelry and Lindblad Expeditions – are preparing. Also, Advertiser Perceptions released its latest DSP report and the research firm’s CSO Kevin Mannion drops by for an in-depth discussion about the DSP market. We’ll check in on Google, Amazon, The Trade Desk, MediaMath and Verizon Media.

E102 – What The Hell Is Going On At The W3C?

Ad tech is “panicked” about the progress the W3C has made finding a replacement for third party cookies. Tune in this week to find out what the issues are, and why marketers and publishers absolutely need to be more involved. Also, we’ll look at Amazon’s CTV inventory through Fire TV, and how it differentiates from competitors like Roku, Hulu and YouTube.

E101 – Google’s Fees, Facebook Advertisers Flee

Google unveiled its take fees for three of its solutions. We’ll dive into what they are and why it’s significant that Google is releasing this information now. Also, we’ll delve into the Great Facebook Advertiser Boycott of July 2020.

E100 – Apple IDFA Going Away Keeps App Measurement At Bay

Is Apple IDFA actually going away? For now, no – but we’ll break down what Apple announced it would do with the identifier at WWDC 2020, and speculate on what it plans to do. Also, AdExchanger’s new research report breaks down what sort of tech and data investments agencies and brands plan to make due to the pandemic. We’ll preview the findings.

E99 – Sellers Out

Google released its sellers.json file – but it’s only 5% complete. What’s missing, and why? Also, we’ll look at Adobe’s plan to get rid of managed services in its Advertising Cloud, and the merging of Disney and Hulu ad tech teams. Finally, we’ll dig into the newest ad spend forecasts from Magna and GroupM.

E98 – Rest, Recovery And Voter Suppression

The country is reopening. Hurrah? In this episode, we’ll look at how advertisers should think about turning on their ad spend as different parts of the country reopen at different rates, and as COVID-19 cases spike in some states. Also, we’ll look at the Trump Campaign’s defensive media strategy as the general election nears. Discouraging people from voting plays a big role.

E97 – The Nation’s Rage Machine 

In the wake of the nationwide protests, sparked by the murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police, we’ll look at the role digital media has played in shaping the country as it is today. Later in the episode, we’ll break down what the DoJ is asking as it builds its antitrust case against Google.

E96 – Game Of Media Agencies

Forrester released its second evaluation of major media agencies. This week, principal analyst Jay Pattisall drops in to break down the findings. Also in this episode: How should marketers think about the nuances of the video game audience?

E95 – Highway To The MachineZone

With AppLovin buying MachineZone, is it on its way to amassing a Google-like empire in the mobile apps world? Also, we’ll look at other walled garden acquisitions, like Twitter buying CrossInstall and Facebook buying GIPHY. Speaking of the book of faces, we’ll tell you how its new ecom endeavor is different from what it’s tried in the past, and we’ll discuss what Walmart’s and Target’s earnings portend about the future of retail.

E94 – ISBA And The Quest For Supply Chain Transparency

AdExchanger welcomes three special guests – Goodway Group president Jay Friedman, PricewaterhouseCoopers partner Sam Tomlinson and ISBA director of media Stephen Chester – to dig deep into ISBA’s recent report on supply chain transparency. What exactly is in that “unknown delta” anyway?

E93 – Xandr And BOPIS

Xandr, recently folded into WarnerMedia, entered the world in 2018 with grand aspirations. But the complexities of the TV market and external pressure on AT&T’s business have made its goals more modest. Also, we’ll look at how BOPIS – buy online, pick up in-store – has become the new hotness during the pandemic.

E92 – Storm Warning

In this episode, the team looks at Google’s Q1, and what’s likely to come in Q2. And speaking of Google, what’s up with its new policy having advertisers prove their identity and location? Also, we’ll look at how political campaigning has changed, and how specifically the upfronts will be transformed following a year without them.

E91 – Begun, The Clone War Has

Facing a surge in bids and the costs needed to process them, The Trade Desk has asked exchanges to stop sending duplicate requests. This week, the team looks at how this development might impact publishers, ad buyers and exchanges. Also, we’ll examine the state of publisher CPMs.

E90 – Prepping For The Bounce Back

The gang welcomes special guest Martin Kihn, SVP of marketing strategy at Salesforce Marketing Cloud, who dives into how you can stay resilient during this tough time. Also, we’ll look at how the pandemic has accelerated the agency holding companies’ transformations.

E89 – A World Without Sports, And Without Third-Party Amazon Affiliates

Everything is canceled, from live sports to affiliate networks that link to Amazon. In this episode, we look at what Amazon is doing and why. Then, since we can’t watch sports, we talk about it – at least, the advertising commitments that have gone into it. What happens to all that money now?

E88 – Audiences, ACTIVATE

Google’s Ads Data Hub is beta testing some new audience activation features. We’ll get into what those features are, the extent to which they’re available and how it all works. Also, the economic fallout from the pandemic is hitting digital advertising hard. We’ll give you an overview of what companies are doing to survive.

E87 – No Workarounds In This Apple!

Apple’s Safari browser will quash all workarounds. In light of the pandemic, a W3C business group will ask Google to extend Chrome’s two-year timeline for third-party cookie deprecation. We also look at some early ad spend projections, and how the growing OOH industry hit a COVID-19 wall.

E86 – You And Me And Quarantine

Checking in from our respective quarantines, the AdExchanger team looks at how the pandemic has put digital media in flux, which changing consumer patterns caused by our new normal might be permanent, and examines some data privacy concessions that GDPR makes to accommodate an outbreak.

E85 – The Ills Of The World, And Of The Internet

Oh God, the Coronavirus is still here. This week, the team looks at how ‘social distancing’ affects an industry built around personal relationships and networking. Plus, we look at why publishers are seeing an uptick in vendor outreach, and we examine whether LiveRamp will survive the cookie apocalypse.

E84- Coronavirus Fears And SSP/Agency Handshakes

The impact of COVID-19 is felt around the world, including the advertising/marketing industry. Plus, we look at how SSPs and holding companies are sidling closer together.

E83 – The Difference In Differential Privacy

Differential privacy is a geeky technique designed to protect large consumer data sets. This week on The Big Story, we talk about what it means for advertising’s future. Also, we examine how the local TV market, stricken with declining ratings and fragmented consumption patterns, is embracing automation.

E82 – Bloomberg’s Money Bomb

Michael Bloomberg’s money has carried him far, though it couldn’t buy a great debate. We’ll look at what his money has wrought. Also, what’s up with retailers like Walmart and Kroger, and consumer tech companies like Roku and Vizio, betting big on selling media?

E81 – Making A Hash Of Identity

The IAB has a proposal to rearchitect how identity is handled online. But will it fly? Also, what will happen when (probably not if) mobile IDs go out the window as well? We’ll also give you the latest on the CCPA.

E80 – Seeing YouTube For The First Time

YouTube reveals its revenues, Disney Plus snatches up subscribers, and Walmart Media Group hosts a bakeoff. Also, what’s the maato with Smaato?

E79 – ‘It’s Like They Took Away The Good Toys And Gave Us Educational Toys’

The Big Story is LIVE at AdExchanger’s Industry Preview, with special guests CafeMedia cofounder and EVP Paul Bannister and a recurring appearance from Beeswax cofounder and CEO Ari Paparo. What will the future hold, when Chrome stops supporting cookies?

E78 – The Call Of The Peacock

Can NBCU’s Peacock fly? The team looks at the streaming service’s ad strategy and the economics of streaming. And, following a disappointing earnings call, CEO Reed Hastings outlined why Netflix would never show ads.

E77 – Chrome’s Cookie Carnage

Chrome’s going to end third-party cookies within two years. We have a lot to talk about. Special guest, Beeswax CEO Ari Paparo, helps us sort through the mess.

E76 – In Defense Of Walmart

This week, we talk about the vibe at CES 2020 – and debate Amazon vs. Walmart. At least, in terms of advertising ambitions.

E75 – The Decade Of All Things

A new decade dawns! This week, we look back at the biggest events of the last ten years, and some of its most influential personalities – whose impact will be felt in the years ahead.

E74 – Cross-Site Cookies For Santa 

This week, we take a look at Google’s upcoming cookie policy change, why marketers are disappointed in their DMPs and the likely reason dataxu got axed from Amazon’s Fire TV program.

E73 – The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, It Will Be Streamed

Has the TV bubble burst? Why is Vizio now selling media? And while there’s no advertising on Netflix, how can brands work with it?

E72 – Amazon: From Third To First? 

Amazon is widely regarded as the third leg of the triopoly. But can it ever catch up to Google and Facebook?

E71 – An Ad Tech Thanksgiving

Before you carve the turkey, you need to give thanks. And this week on The Big Story, the ad tech community raises a glass to all it has to be thankful for.

E70 – Dream A Little (Bid) Stream

Google has Open Bidding, Amazon’s got Transparent Ad Marketplace (TAM) and Prebid predates them both. What do buyers, exchanges and publishers need to know about the three most dominant auction solutions?

E69 – TikTok TikTok, Down Go The Cookies

The cookie countdown has everyone confused. How will it actually affect the ad industry? No one can agree, and everyone has an agenda. Also, we look at TikTok’s late mover advantage.

E68 – The Path Forward For Criteo And Viant

Former Nielsen exec Megan Clarken has a big task ahead of her as Criteo CEO. What is she facing? Also Viant, having bought itself back from Meredith, is now an indie DSP. But isn’t it dangerous to go alone? Take this episode of The Big Story to learn more.

E67 – I Wish I Knew How To Quit You

Can marketers work directly with exchanges? Can anyone leave Google? And the latest on Facebook’s political ads problem.

E66 – It’s A Dataxu Out There!

The TV ad tech consolidation is revving up, with Roku buying Dataxu and AT&T’s Xandr buying Clypd. What will these two technologies add to their respective owner’s ad ambitions?

E65 – Rapid Fire Rounds

Everything is on the cusp of transformation: privacy, legislation, media transactions, the holdcos, TV. Here’s what you need to know.

E64 – G Is For Privacy, P&G Is For Frequency Capping

Google has changed its policies in recent years around what data gets passed back to marketers, and under what circumstances. We’ll break all that down. Also, P&G’s Marc Pritchard wants a way for signals to cross all the walled gardens, to enable crucial marketing activities like frequency capping. Can he succeed?

E63 – Warren’s War On Facebook

This week, the team delves into Elizabeth Warren’s rhetoric to break up Facebook. We also look at her unusual political campaign strategy. And finally, agencies are learning that the union between data and creativity needs a lot of marriage counseling.

E62 – Oracle And Google Roll With The Punches

Oracle restructures Oracle Data Cloud, laying off between 10%-15% of staffers. Google restructures its ad business units, and DoubleClick vets are no longer in charge of the display business. What’s going on, and what do these two transformations have in common?

E61 – How The CCPA Will Affect Your Life

The CCPA is coming. This week: the weird nuances that still need to be worked out, why industry lobbyists were so unsuccessful at making any substantial alterations and a list of things you need to think about before the law comes into effect.

E60 – The Great Ad Tech Reformation 

After a few years in the doldrums, ad tech companies seem to be doing well. Integral Ad Science has an all new look. And stocks from publicly-traded companies like The Trade Desk, Rubicon Project, Cardlytics and Telaria are, for now, surging. What’s going on?

E59 – The Cookie Rumbles

Cookies: Can’t live with ‘em, can’t live without ‘em. Well, depends on who you ask, and the experts disagree. This week, we go headlong into the heated debate on the value of cookie tracking, and take a look at the super-sized media budgets of Big Tech platforms.

E58 – Cleanliness Is Next To Platform Data

Amazon is beta testing a clean room. What does it offer, and how does it compare to clean room setups offered by Google and Facebook?

E57 – Targeting Targeted

This week, it’s all about Apple’s ITP, Google Chrome’s response to its browser peers’ user privacy lockdown and we get into how CCPA might affect broadcasters’ plans to offer addressable advertising.

E56 – Sizing Up The Competition

Viacom and CBS have gotten back together. What does this mean for advanced advertising? For streaming? For content? For everything? Also, the Democratic candidates have created an absurd direct response feeding frenzy, as they each try to amass enough donors to qualify for the September debates. We’ll hop into a shark cage and descend like chum into the waters to scope out the situation.

E55 – RTB, R Not TB

That is the question. Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of GDPR, or to take arms against a sea of troubles and turn to contextual data instead. This week on The Big Story, we look at the future of RTB, and apologize to William Shakespeare.

E54 – The Fire That Burns Brightest

This week, we celebrate three letter acronyms. RTB comes to CTV now that Amazon Fire TV inventory is available through the DSPs dataxu and The Trade Desk. Plus, the FTC and DoJ launch antitrust investigations into Facebook. But what’s the difference? Finally, we look at the rise and fall and perhaps rise again of the ad tech startup Ad/Fin.

E53 – Ad Tech Fight Club

The Trade Desk stares down Google. The FTC takes a chunk out of Facebook. TikTok invades #Area51.

E52 – Layser Sights

News Corp.’s Stephanie Layser makes a guest appearance to dig into the explosive column she wrote about Google’s Unified Pricing rule changes, and the effect they might have on the publisher community.

E51 – Here Comes A New Challenger

We all want quality in our lives, and our ad inventory. Tune in to hear about a new way to get it. Also, we’ll discuss all of the newcomers, and some oldcomers, who are jockeying to grab a bit of LiveRamp’s onboarding business.

E50 – The Summer Of Uncertainty

In this episode of The Big Story, the team looks back at the year so far, and looks forward at the year to come. Happy 4th!

E49 – June 27, 2019 – Data Plus Math Plus ACR Plus Regulation

Data Plus Math acquired by LiveRamp! ACR data from smart TVs in play! The regulatory environment! Add them all up and you get… The Big Story podcast.

E48 – June 20, 2019 – The Pod-Cannes

What happens in Cannes does not stay in Cannes, which is a good thing because if that were the case, no one would ever make a deal. Find out what happened at the 2019 International Festival of Creativity, which, in recent years, has seemed more like a tech showcase.

E47 – June 13, 2019 – Tumultuous TV!

TV buying is changing and, goodness, it seems we’re in the storm before the calm. Tune in to find out what AT&T’s Xandr is up to, what Google is up to and to hear about a new company founded by ad tech vets that just made its way out of stealth.

E46 – June 6, 2019 – Amazon Gets (Ad) Served

The rumors were true: Amazon bought Sizmek’s ad server and DCO. Now what?

E45 – May 30, 2019 – A Home For Drawbridge, A Birthday For GDPR

LinkedIn bought Drawbridge. Wait, what? Also, happy birthday to GDPR. How much did the party cost the ad industry?

E44 – May 22, 2019 – Who Dares Wins

This week, it’s a Big Story-palooza, as the team looks at Brian O’Kelley’s Senate Judiciary testimony, how the walled gardens are able to mark up publisher inventory, Google’s cloud strategy and data fragmentation in TV. Take a deep breath and dive in.

E43 – May 15, 2019 – Upfronting And Fingerprinting

There was actually news at the upfronts this year, with Disney taking operational control of Hulu and Xandr availing AT&T data beyond WarnerMedia O&O properties. Also, a primer on fingerprinting.

E42 – May 8, 2019 – Google-Fu

New privacy policies for Chrome? Fortunately for advertisers, they’re not as drastic as they could be, at least for now.

E41 – May 2, 2019 – Strange New World

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore Google’s slowing growth rate and the changing advertising ecosystem.

E40 – April 25, 2019 – United We Stand

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore why publisher are peeved with Google and the war to aggregate TV inventory.

E39 – April 18, 2019 – Stack That Cash

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore Publicis Groupe buying Epsilon and more Sizmek fallout.

E38 – April 11, 2019 – The Great Escapes

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore the regulation of dark patterns and IBM exiting marketing clouds.

E37 – April 4, 2019 – Riding Eternal, Shiny And Chrome

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore the latest news on Google, Sizmek and Oracle Data Cloud.

E36 – March 28, 2019 – Agencies And The Supply Side

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore the current state of affairs for agencies.

E35 – March 21, 2019 – Spring Forward, Fall Back

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore CTV purchasing rights and GDPR’s continued ripple effects.

E34 – March 14, 2019 – Google’s On First

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore the meaning behind Google’s shift to a first-price auction model for it’s Ad Manager product.

E33 – March 7, 2019 – Boiler Room

Tune in this week to “The Big Story” as we explore the ad tech industry’s ups, downs and plateaus.

E32 – February 28, 2019 – Falling Down

This week on “The Big Story,” AdExchanger looks at RockYou’s bankruptcy and, on a much larger scale, the major pain at Kraft Heinz.

E31 – February 21, 2019 – DTC Principles Come To Big Brands

This week on “The Big Story,” we’ll talk about the growth of digital and Amazon, in particular: why it’s succeeding and what it must do to grab even more precious, precious spend.

E30 – February 14, 2019 – Is IAB DTC?

On this week’s episode of “The Big Story,” Sarah Sluis describes what happened at the IAB Annual Leadership Summit, why the IAB might be making the wholesale shift to DTC and how DTC principles are effecting even the biggest companies.

E29 – February 7, 2019 – Blood In The Water

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team takes a good long look at how GDPR has impacted Google and its policies, which, in turn, have impacted the rest of the digital ad ecosystem.

E28 – January 31, 2019 – Must See TV

The past couple of months have been big for TV…Netflix et al. are hyping up their shows. But the most interesting news, at least for advertisers, isn’t what’s on the screen – it’s all the maneuvering that’s happening behind it.

E27 – January 22, 2019 – A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To France

On Monday, France’s Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL) levied a 57 million euro fine on Google for failing to comply with GDPR. Allison Schiff wrote a thorough report on the situation, but there’s way more to be said – and way more was said this week on “The Big Story.”

E26 – January 16, 2019 – This Episode Brought To You By The Letters CES And PMP

On “The Big Story” this week, the team stirs some alphabet soup. Rejuvenated after the annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas to worship at the mighty altar of the Consumer Electronics Gods, the AdExchanger editors return to dish on developments within the giant cluster.

E25 – January 9, 2019 – The Data Deluge At CES

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team previews CES, from Google’s attempt to push its Assistant into more products and more homes to Apple’s attempt to establish itself as a bastion of consumer privacy – a claim that, let’s face it, might have some problems.

E24 – January 2, 2019 – All Hail 2019!

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team takes a look at what they expect will happen in some of the areas experiencing the biggest transformations – from TV and video to publishing and, yes, regulation.

E23 – December 19, 2018 – Closing Out The Year With OpenX And Google

Sarah Sluis, who wrote about OpenX’s big shift, looks at the challenging road ahead for the company, as well as OpenX’s peers, which have made similar transformations as supply-side ad tech becomes more constrained.

E22 – December 13, 2018 – WPP’s Big Plan

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team looks at what WPP CEO Mark Read has done, what Read still might do, and what he’s up against.

E21 – December 5, 2018 – Sir Martin Sorrell’s Botanical Curiosity

From peanut to coconut to coco de mer, the AdExchanger team examines Martin Sorrell’s agricultural improbability on this week’s “The Big Story.”

E20 – November 28, 2018 – Fuel For The Holidays

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team discusses what Rocket Fuel was up to, what can be learned from its fall from grace and how that story came to be.

E19 – November 14, 2018 – DTC Disrupts The Competition

This week on “The Big Story,” the gang looks at Jerry Buhlmann’s surprise departure – a mild shock given that Dentu Aegis seemed to be weathering the financial storms that buffeted its holdco peers.

E18 – November 7, 2018 – Thus Spoke The Electorate

This week on “The Big Story,” we look at how the application of polling data has changed over the past two years and why, this time, it was a better predictor of the final results. Between trolls and landline users, pollsters are at least more aware of variables that can throw off their predictions.

E17 – November 1, 2018 – Planting Seeds In The Walled Gardens

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team looks at some small but significant shifts in Amazon’s and Facebook’s ad offerings.

E16 – October 25, 2018 – Twitchy Trigger Finger

In “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team unpacks how Twitch could factor into Amazon’s next big ad agenda. The platform certainly has the potential to become the next YouTube, where users and influencers can upload and monetize their own videos.

E15 – October 18, 2018 – You Trust Me, Right?

This week on “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team looks at the state of trust in ad tech.

E14 – October 11, 2018 – Investigations, Valuations, Valedictions

No one doubts that the rebate problem persists, but is federal intervention required for its resolution? On the other hand, perhaps the FBI’s mere presence can snap some crooked players straight – and the industry could use a cleansing force from the outside.

E13 – October 4, 2018 – The Quest For Quality

Tune in to this week’s episode of “The Big Story” as we unpack the issues that might have left you scratching your head – and come away not just educated, but entertained as well.

E12 – September 27, 2018 – Fall Into Festival Season

AdExchanger editors put on their trench boots and waded through the confetti – but not to cover all the keynote celebrity speakers. Both AT&T and Salesforce have made big acquisitions to turn their respective galleons toward shining new horizons.

E11 – September 20, 2018 – The Strange Case Of The Vanishing Media Agencies

The temperature is cooling, the leaves are falling and the skies are turning the color of slate. It’s a time for mystery. This week on “The Big Story,” the team investigates the baffling situation of the missing media agencies.

E10 – September 13, 2018 – Snap Judgements And A Broken Oath

The AdExchanger team examines the original promises that once boosted Snap and Oath, back when enthusiasm reached stratospheric heights and ad buyers fantasized that either or both could become viable alternatives to Facebook and Google.

E9 – September 6, 2018 – New Faces In Challenging Places

Join us for the next 20 minutes as the AdExchanger team discusses what’s at stake for WPP and Nike.

E8 – August 30, 2018 – Brand-ishing New Tricks And Old

This discussion about branding focuses on a trend, two years in the making, of brands hiring data-driven user-acquisition experts from gaming apps.

E7 – August 23, 2018 – Bid Crashing

This week, the AdExchanger editors discuss what bid caching is, why it’s so controversial and who is harmed by the practice.

E6 – August 16, 2018 – The A To Z On Amazon

In this week’s “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger team scrutinizes the history and future of Amazon as an ad platform – from one decade ago, when it struggled to convince media planners to buy a banner ad, to today, as the owner of some of the most coveted and exclusive data sets.

E5 – August 9, 2018 – The Blockchain Cometh

This week on The Big Story, members of the AdExchanger editorial team talk about blockchain, the subject of a feature (What’s The Latest For Blockchain In Ad Tech?) that was among our most read stories last week.

E4 – August 2, 2018 – What Makes A Top Programmatic Publisher?

In this week’s “The Big Story” podcast, the AdExchanger team takes a deep dive into the pubs that made its Top 10 Programmatic Publishers list, which went live Monday and featured a variety of companies – from programmatic upstarts King and Spotify to traditional broadcasters such as NBCUniversal, legacy publishers like Conde Nast and digital giant Vox Media.

E3 – July 26, 2018 – Facebook’s Fury

In the latest episode of “The Big Story,” we examine what happens to companies that rely on Facebook but have fallen out of favor.

E2 – July 19, 2018 – Acquisition Mania

In the second episode of “The Big Story,” the AdExchanger gang takes a long look at the 2018 M&A landscape, exploring why the price tags are so high and what kind of impact that will have on the industry.

E1 – July 12, 2018 – IPG Buys Acxiom Marketing Solutions, LiveRamp’s Future And Sir Martin Wins Against WPP

In our inaugural episode, Managing Editor Ryan Joe and staff writers Alison Weissbrot and James Hercher discuss two holding-company acquisitions that, while very different, will both disrupt the agency landscape.

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Moloco Invests In Its Competitor Topsort As The Retail Media Stakes Go Up

Topsort can lean into Moloco’s algorithmic personalization, while Moloco benefits from Topsort’s footprint with local retailers in the US and in Latin America.

CDP BlueConic Acquires First-Party Data Collection Startup Jebbit

On Wednesday, customer data platform BlueConic bought Jebbit, which creates quizzes, surveys and other interactive online plugs for collecting data from customers.

Comic: The Showdown (Google vs. DOJ)

The DOJ’s Witness List For The Google Antitrust Trial Is A Who’s Who Of Advertising

The DOJ published the witness list for its upcoming antitrust trial against Google, and it reads like the online advertising industry’s answer to the Social Register.

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Why Vodafone Is Giving Out Grades For Its Creative

One way to get a handle on your brand creative is to, well, grade your homework, according to Anne Stilling, Vodafone’s global director of brands and media.

Inside The Fall Of Oracle’s Advertising Business

By now, the industry is well aware that Oracle, once the most prominent advertising data seller in market, will shut down its advertising division. What’s behind the ignominious end of Oracle Advertising?

Forget about asking for permission to collect cookies. Google will have to ask for permission to not collect them.

Criteo: The Privacy Sandbox Is NOT Ready Yet, But Could Be If Google Makes Certain Changes Soon

If Google were to shut off third-party cookies today and implement the current version of the Privacy Sandbox, publishers would see their ad revenue on Chrome tank by around 60% on average.