The Big Story is a podcast featuring a roundtable of AdExchanger editors talking about the biggest stories from the past week. It is available wherever you subscribe to podcasts.
This week on “The Big Story,” a bipartisan bill (Hey, it exists!) seeks to protect consumers against the encroachment of dark patterns. IBM jettisons the remnants of its marketing cloud ambitions. And traditional brands embrace the way of the DTC.
First, dark patterns. It has nothing to do with NASA’s black hole image and everything to do with protecting consumer privacy. A bill introduced by Sens. Mark Warner (the Dem) and Deb Fischer (the Republican) sought to prohibit so-called dark patterns, where online platforms entice consumers to share more data than they ordinarily would.
Allison Schiff took a look at the DETOUR Act and discusses the initial draft’s prohibitions. Obviously there is a long way to go and many hurdles to clear before a bill becomes law – but it’s impossible to overlook how its mere existence signifies growing agitation from consumers over how their data is collected and used.
Speaking of agitation, IBM has bailed on its marketing cloud aspirations. The company once owned a pile of marketing tech – including site analytics like Unica and, most recently, email marketing platform Silverpop – but IBM spent the latter part of 2018 and the early part of 2019 getting rid of it all.
It sold its first batch of mar tech to India-based HCL Technologies in December 2018. Earlier this week, the private equity firm Centerbridge bought Silverpop and a bunch of other assets. The AdExchanger team dives deep into IBM’s strategy and discusses why owning marketing execution software is no longer of interest.
And finally, with DTC all the rage, Sarah Sluis looks at how some big brands are building out their own DTC experiments. How are they dealing with potential problems, such as disrupting themselves or incorporating a freewheeling startup culture into the company bureaucracy?
This episode is sponsored by Verizon Media