Courtesy of Dr Johnny Ryan, Pagefair and GDPR, maybe what happens in Norwich gets to stay in Norwich, Rupert.

“In addition, “programmatic” advertising services that Google provides to advertisers and publishers under its DoubleClick business will be affected. Operating these under the GDPR would require not only that a user consents to Google’s use of data for advertising targeting purposes, but to the many other companies such as DMPs (data management platforms, DSPs (demand side platforms), and so forth processing these data too. The DoubleClick business is therefore at four on the scale…

How the GDPR will disrupt Google and Facebook, Dr Johnny Ryan, Pagefair

If you are in the publishing game and haven’t read this, then you have a little less than six months to do so.

Or rather, if you are in the publishing game and haven’t got your lawyers to read this, then you have a little less than six months to do so.

It is the Pagefair view of the coming adtech apocalypse as the arrival of ‘General Data Protection Regulation’ (GDPR) across the EU next May threatens every publisher with fines of up to 4% of their global turnover if they play fast and loose with their audience data.

Sell it off to the highest bidder without your explicit permission, in short.

Fortunately, here at Addiply Towers, we’re banking on the fact that we are so simple and stupid when it comes to utilizing the first party data gleaned off publishing partners like that we will sail right beneath the regulators radar.

Basically, what happens on MFW/NorwichCity, stays on MFW/NorwichCity.

And as such we won’t be needing to seek anyone’s consent for what we do with their data. Because we don’t do anything big or clever with it.

Like let Wall Street auction it. And see up to 70% of our intended ad revenue disappear up God knows whose a*se, for doing God knows what with it.

But for anyone whose business does sit behind a publisher’s website and whose fortunes lie in the ability to freely trade individual user data across the length and breadth of the ‘Lumascape’ and all the myriad of DSPs, DMPs, SSPs seeking a living in between, the conclusions of Dr Johnny Ryan and his Pagefair pals ought to send a collective shiver down the spine.

Let alone any hapless publisher who hasn’t properly indemnified themselves against data malpractice somewhere back down the line. For which they now carry the can.

Ping a Ghostery enquiry through a bulk standard news website and anyone can swiftly see just how many individual businesses need to play nice data-wise in this new regulatory environment. WalesOnline alone has 32 ‘unique vendors’ bringing something or other to the party.

Why Dr Ryan might be right in suspecting that the EU/GDPR regulators might be particularly hard on the Googles and Facebooks of this world isn’t too hard to fathom. Not if you know your history and recognise how members of a complex society react once they come to recognise they have little or no ‘stake’ in the Wall Street game being played.

By the likes of Rupert Murdoch and the Mercers of this world as well as our Silicon Valley overlords.

They go all ‘Fuck you!’ and legislate.

In defence of the average, individual EU consumer and their data rights.

The fact that – in the opinion of Pagefair and Dr Ryan – Google’s DoubleClick programmatic ad platform will require ‘opt-in’ consent from each and every individual user throws a bomb of a UI/UX experience the way of, say, The Tab.

I’ve met them before. Good people. And have been attracting decent investment.

Including a hefty slice from old Rupert as part of a £4.5m round this autumn.

You can see the logic. Rupert and Rebekeh have stuck £114m in the video ad tech platform Unruly. Why wouldn’t you want to bring that ad tech – and the brands therein – to bear on an equally unruly student audience?

As well as being The Sun’s nationwide news agency for student hi-jinks.

After all, if Unruly is good enough for The Guardian, it has to be good enough for The Tab, right?

All that student data. Flush with Mum and Dad’s cash. Why wouldn’t you follow them wherever they go and sell to the highest agency/brand bidder?

As they are, indeed, doing. See their Ad Products.

“Advanced Data Targeting: Every article on The Tab has been tagged (by category and region) to help programmatic buyers and our Optimisation Managers to improve campaign targeting.

“Audience Extension: The Tab’s audience extension product leverages first-party user data to help brands target student audiences outside of our website…”


See Dr Ryan. Not without their explicit permission you won’t.

How many students will consent to sharing their data with Rupert Murdoch is something of an unintended consequence of taking the News Corp shilling, I guess.

Be it via Unruly. Or AppNexus as Rupert tries to take one, last stand against the almighty Duopoly.

I’m sure it will all be fine. Nothing to see here.

But here is what I’ve always liked about The Tab. And why they are still onto a winner whether or not their current ad tech solutions get royally minced next May.

It’s bottom up and local.

Unlike Mashable, Vice or Buzzfeed – all of whom are currently wrestling with the same programmatic ad revenue challenges as The Guardian – it has segmented its audience out into neat little, local packages.

The Tab/Norwich. Just as I run MFW/Norwich.

Personally, I think what happens in Norwich should stay in Norwich. And not be shared with Rupert Murdoch.

And you don’t need to be a fucking rocket scientist or an ad ops optimization manager (£85,000pa plus benefits) to work out that a Norwich nightclub should be advertising to Norwich students.

And doesn’t need to go via Charlotte Street, Shoreditch and Mountain View to get there.

But then I’m local. Not London.

And see the world simply from the bottom up – and not the top down.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *