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Bot Or Not?


Digital media company Nubai Ventures is taking ad platform Outbrain to court.

Nubai claims Outbrain knowingly sent a high degree of bot traffic to its site because Nubai didn’t pay a premium for sponsored link placements on high-performing sites.

That premium, by the way, allegedly amounts to just around five cents per click. Sure, it’s only pennies, but those cents add up quickly across hundreds of thousands of clicks.

The lawsuit, filed March 11 with the New York State Supreme Court, is an example of “a long-term business relationship turning sour,” says Associate Editor Anthony Vargas.

Jamarlin Martin, Nubai’s founder and CEO, told Vargas he had a positive-enough experience buying traffic from Outbrain for his previous company, Moguldom Media Group. In fact, Martin, who calls himself a “pioneer of arbitrage,” had a partnership with Outbrain going back more than a decade.

And because of past success, he wanted to run the same audience traffic acquisition plays at Nubai. But this time, things didn’t go as planned. Nubai ended its relationship with Outbrain in April 2023.

Beyond seeking damages, Nubai hopes that a monetary judgment in its case will create a chilling effect that stops content recommendation platforms from selling bot traffic.

Then, we dig into why the Joint Industry Committee (JIC) and the Media Rating Council (MRC) issued a joint statement this week. Both the MRC and JIC set cross-platform video measurement standards, but they’re not competing or undermining each other. In fact, they say they share a goal: to establish TV and video measurement transparency.

But the JIC and MRC have been the subject of “a bunch of finger-pointing and infighting” among currency providers, says Associate Editor Alyssa Boyle.

So the organizations decided to clear the air – and hopefully put an end to the squabbling.

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