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Weekly Roundup: Facebook’s data scandal, Google’s new releases and more!

This week in Adtech
We constantly work towards improving the adtech weekly roundups based on your feedback and add-ons. And, we would like to continue doing so. We love your feedback, so, feel free to let us know what you think.

The digital advertising is an ever-evolving, complex landscape and always has a ton of issues and industry-debates. Starting from Digiday to AdMonsters to AdExchanger, everyone tries to uncover the digital stories and make the industry less-complicated.

But, there is no standard source of reference that exists, just for publishers. And, as a publisher focused company, we would like to be your standard source of reference. From this week, we are going to make you, a publisher more clear on what’s happening in the ecosystem by our weekly stories.

Here’s the week 1 roundup for you!

Facebook Data Breach – “It’s not just about Facebook”

Last week, when The New York Times and The Guardian published articles on ‘Facebook Data Breach of more than 50 million Americans’, it quickly got the spotlight and proved to be one of the biggest data scandals of the social network.

What happened exactly?

A Russian-American academic named Aleksandr Kogan, created a personality quiz ‘This is Your Digital Life’ to harvest millions of Facebook profile data and sold it to a UK-based analytics firm ‘Cambridge Analytica’.

Then, using the data Cambridge Analytica reportedly developed psychological profiles to target and deliver Pro-trump material to them; all with the goal of influencing the 2016 elections. Mr.Christopher Wylie, an ex-employee of Cambridge Analytica was the whistleblower in this case.

Just after the scandal leak, both companies are being scrutinized by US & UK lawmakers and politicians. Facebook’s stock fell by 6% on Monday and continued to drown another 2% on Tuesday, vaporizing around $50bn of the Market Cap of Facebook Inc.

After a long silence, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted on Facebook promising users that necessary actions will be taken and he listed out all of them.

Notable Events:

  • Co-founder of Whatsapp ‘Brian Acton’ hit twitter to say he’s deleting Facebook.
  • Ex-facebook Insider ‘Sandy Parakilas’ told The Guardian that ‘Facebook hasn’t properly worked to prevent such data breaches. They could have prevented it’.
  • MPs summoned Mark Zuckerberg saying Facebook misleads them.
  • CEO of Cambridge Analytica, Alexander Nix got suspended from the firm.

Amazon – Destroying the duopoly, one brick at a time?

Amazon will take in $2.89 billion in ad revenue in the U.S. this year.

–  eMarketer

A blog post from eMarketer suggests ‘Google and Facebook’ aka ‘The Duopoly’ will be sliding down this year to capture 56.8 percent of total US digital ad spend. But last year, they’ve managed to cover 58.5 percent of total US digital ad spend. The fall is due to the rise of small players like Amazon and Snap Inc.

Notably, Amazon’s growth is projected up by 63.5% this year and will hit $2bn in US Ad revenue for the first time. According to eMarketer, by 2020, Amazon will capture 4.5 percent of the total US digital ad spend. Although it isn’t even close to what duopoly holds, Amazon has higher odds of breaking the wall (Its growth rate is more promising).

Need a hand? – Asks Google.

As we all know, Google initiates millions of product searches online. Now, it is trying to convert those searches into buying actions through its new feature called ‘Shopping Actions’.

It is a cost-per-sale model, where retailers can make their catalog top the Google Search Results and it also lets shoppers buy with a few clicks. Google announced this on its Adwords Blog last week and its plan seems to sway Amazon’s new paid search product (Amazon is planning to launch a product to monetize searches on its platform).

Also read: Google News Initiative – Helping publishers monetize their digital content.

Reportedly, retailers like Target, Ulta Beauty have successfully increased their sales with a test run. Expect to see more Shopping Actions soon.

Oath revamps it’s Header Bidding Tech for Mobile Apps

The waterfall is drying up all over the web. Recently, Oath released its new version of Super Action to conduct bidding auction parallelly with SSP.

Previously, One by AOL would host an auction for its own demand through SDK and then, send the winning bid to developer SSP to compete with the auction conducted there. The winner would get the placement.

Now, Super Auction can run parallelly along with developer SSPs, which, in turn, increases competition and reduced technical burden a bit for developers, said Patrick McCormack, Oath’s VP of publisher sales.

Google is launching a Playable in-game Ad Product and a couple of Cool Features for App Developers

Google is launching a new type of playable in-game ad called ‘rewarded ads’. You might be familiar with the types of ads where you have to watch a video to gain an extra life or some loot. Players were always getting annoyed with those types of Ads.

The rewarded ads will let users play a game demo instead of compelling them to view a video. Google hopes to gain players’ interest in this new in-game Ad product. Also, it launches a new option for in-game video ads. I.e., Players may select which video, he/she can watch to earn extra life/loot.

Most importantly, Google is planning to change the Ad bidding process. Like Header Bidding, there will be a unified open auction (soon) for all the demands from various Ad Exchanges like OpenX, Smaato, etc.

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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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