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Weekly Roundup: Publishers’ Sentiments Towards ID Tech, UK’s Step Against Cookie Popups, And More

Adtech Weekly Roundup
 “We want to show the breadth of The Washington Post’s coverage and show it very quickly so that readers can consume it far more quickly than most articles.”


  • After Google delayed the cookie phaseout, publishers are utilizing the extra time to weigh their options. Identity tech solutions are struggling to onboard new sites.
  • Advertisers are also not seeking inventory with identifiers as the cookie is working as usual for them.
  • The UK’s Information Commissioner will raise the problem of annoying cookie popups in front of G7 nations. The country is leaning towards a solution like Global Privacy Control.
  • The Washington Post has introduced a morning newsletter. It’ll be available in text and audio format.
  • The Post’s morning newsletter will be available via email, web, mobile web, and app. The publisher wants its audience to form a habit of reading or listening to the newsletter every day.
  • Microsoft has introduced Microsoft Start, a revamped version of MSN. The new design looks clean with fewer ads.

Changing Sentiments Towards ID Tech

One of the stories in Digiday’s Media Briefing highlights publishers’ changing attitude towards identity tech. Google’s decision to extend support for the third-party cookie has made all the difference. It turns out that identity tech providers were already struggling to onboard publishers, but the extended deadline has slowed the adoption further.

Publishers want to utilize the extra time to make more informed decisions. Many publishers would work with multiple ID solution providers, but there’s no rush as it was earlier. In the meantime, many publishers will also explore ways to avoid identity tech altogether.

“It will help reassure publishers that their hands aren’t tied and they won’t be forced to adopt an alternate identifier,”


Publishers have also slowed down due to the lack of demand from advertisers. As the cookie still works, their ad spend keeps performing as usual. So, they aren’t looking for inventory powered by ID solutions as well. Finally, publishers are unconvinced that an ID tech would improve their revenue. The usage would pick up only when the early adopters demonstrate strong revenue figures with ID solutions.


There’s no doubt that you’ve to find cookie alternatives. ID solutions will be one of the probable solutions. There’s no harm in waiting and watching the ID space until cookie is an option. Meanwhile, you should also invest in other targeting methods like using first-party data, contextual data, etc. This approach will ensure that you’re prepared on all fronts.

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The UK Takes Another Step Against Cookie Popups

The UK’s quest to simplify cookie consent has been going on for a while. Its government officials talked about the harms of complicated GDPR laws earlier. They’ve also stated that cookie consent popups are pointless. Although, the industry showed skepticism towards the UK’s plans. But the country keeps moving forward.

The UK’s information commissioner will raise the cookie problem in front of G7 countries on Tuesday. The G7 group consists of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Together, these countries work on global policy. So, a discussion on cookie popups can impact privacy practices in multiple countries.

“No single country can tackle this issue alone. That is why I am calling on my G7 colleagues to use our convening power. Together we can engage with technology firms and standards organizations to develop a coordinated approach to this challenge.”

Elizabeth Denham, Information Commissioner, UK

The Information Commissioner says cookie popups are annoying, and internet users dislike them. Dark patterns are already tricking people to accept privacy invasion. Ultimately, the users start saying yes to all the messages due to the fatigue caused by endless popups.

So what does the UK suggest? It’ll pitch a unified solution that can work on all the sites. The required technology already exists. For example, Global Privacy Control offers browser-level settings to signal your cookie preferences to all the websites you visit. It’s worth mentioning that CCPA has already backed GPC.

While it’s annoying to select cookie preferences on every site, a global setting can be harmful to the industry. We hope for a balanced solution.

Strategies From Top Publishers

The Washington Post launches a morning newsletter

Mornings are strategically crucial for news publishers. Most readers start their day with the news. It’s a habit of the reader that can give returning visits to the publisher. Additionally, if you can engage the reader in the morning with an event, he’ll return repetitively throughout the day to read more about further developments. We read about this strategy while we dived deep into the history of Politico. The Washington Post is attempting something similar.

The Washington Post has started a newsletter called The 7. It goes live at 7 am throughout the week, and it has the seven most important news stories for the day. It’s not just an email newsletter. It’s also available on the web, on the app, and you can even listen to it instead of reading. Washington Post app users have the option to receive push notifications too. American Express Business is the current sponsor of the newsletter, and the deal will run throughout the year.

The first issue of the newsletter had close to 400 words. So it’s a short and crisp newsletter. The publisher has used bullets to keep the stories easily digestible and the format is very similar to Axios. The Washington Post’s goal is not to send traffic to its site. It wants to form a habit of the consumer to listen or read it every day.

 “We want to show the breadth of The Washington Post’s coverage and show it very quickly so that readers can consume it far more quickly than most articles.”

Coleen O’Lear, head of mobile strategy at The Post

Microsoft Revamps Its News Aggregation Platform

Microsoft has introduced Microsoft Start, a revamped version of MSN. The company has emphasized on simplicity and personalization in the announcement. It also says that the content will come from premium publishers but no names have been announced yet. Users can access the service from different platforms as it is available:

  • As a standalone website (available on Microsoft Edge and Chrome) – MicrosoftStart.com
  • As a mobile app on both Android and iOS
  • From the News and Interests experience on the Windows 10 taskbar
  • From the Widgets experience in Windows 11
  • From the Microsoft Edge new tab page

While the company portrays it as a new product, it doesn’t look anything more than MSN with a cleaner design and fewer ads. When we tried to personalize the feed, the feature was not working as expected, and there weren’t any noticeable changes in the suggested articles after we selected our interests.

But, as the service is brand new, we can’t expect it to be perfect. Would Microsoft make special deals with publishers for this new service? We’re not confident about it because the service can run without doing so. Would it impact your traffic from Microsoft’s platforms? If the service gains new users, you may see some changes. But, don’t have high hopes. Stay connected so that we can keep you informed.

Moments That Matter

  • Brands are still playing ball with clickbait ad sites, advertising’s roach that will survive the bomb – Morning Brew
  • Dems push for federal probe of alleged ad collusion between Google and Facebook – The Verge
  • Google ad-blocking: A moderation dilemma for publishers – Press Gazette
Automatad Team

At Automatad, we help publishers to monetize better without hampering the user experience. Our products are live across hundreds of publishers, earning them incremental ad revenue with every passing second. You can request a free audit to get an estimated revenue uplift today.

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