Tag: Online Advertising

Google and Facebook Are Quietly Tracking You on Sex Websites

Silicon Valley’s biggest companies are always watching you — even when you’re browsing pornography websites in incognito mode. Trackers from tech companies like Google and Facebook are logging your most personal browsing details, according to a forthcoming New Media & Society paper, which scanned 22,484 pornography websites. Where that data ultimately goes is not always […]

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Trump’s ‘Social Media Summit’: All the President’s Memes

Trolling on the internet was once a thankless pastime. Make edgy jokes on the right message board, get your sarcastic memes noticed by the right people, and you might score some retweets and Reddit upvotes, but that was about the extent of it. For today’s right-wing trolls, though, there is a bigger prize on the […]

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I Used Google Ads for Social Engineering. It Worked.

Kevin Hines had one thought as he plummeted toward the Pacific Ocean: I can change anything in my life except the fact that I just jumped from the Golden Gate Bridge. “One sentence could have stopped me,” Kevin wrote. “Had any one of the hundreds of passers-by engaged with me, it would … potentially have […]

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Your Data Could Be at the Center of the Fight Against Big Tech

LONDON — Germany’s top antitrust enforcer, Andreas Mundt, recently asked a room full of lawyers, academics and regulators to imagine a wall filled with their personal information collected by Facebook and Google. He told them to picture it stocked with their data broken up into categories like finances, location, relationships and hobbies. “That is you,” […]

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‘Fingerprinting’ to Track Us Online Is on the Rise. Here’s What to Do.

If there’s one lesson to learn about digital privacy, it’s that we can never grow complacent. Even if we secure our data so we are not tracked online, the ad tech industry will find ways to monitor our digital activities. And so it is with the rise of so-called fingerprinting, which security researchers are calling […]

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Martin Sorrell Wants to Build a New Ad Empire. Please Don’t Call It Revenge.

Martin Sorrell has often scoffed at the notion that revenge is now part of his business strategy. But he must have relished a payback-is-sweet moment last July, when his new company, S4 Capital, announced that it had closed its first deal. Once called the most powerful man in the advertising industry, Mr. Sorrell had completed […]

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Congress Wants Data Transparency, but It Still Doesn’t Understand the Internet

This article is part of a limited-run newsletter. You can sign up here. This week, Senators Mark Warner and Josh Hawley introduced a bipartisan privacy bill with a clear demand for Big Tech: It’s time to disclose what our user data is worth. The idea is simple. Platforms gobble up our personal information in countless […]

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Vaginas Deserve Giant Ads, Too

Anyone who takes the subway regularly in New York City knows that riders can’t escape the ads for erectile dysfunction drugs. There are the Hims ads, which suggestively feature cactuses, both standing and slumping; there are the Roman ads, offering to deliver such drugs directly to men’s doorsteps. Given all of this, shouldn’t we expect […]

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Facebook and Google Don’t Need Your Data to Make Lots of Money

It’s easy to see tech companies as a monolithic villain in the battle over consumer privacy. But in fact, there are countless tech companies, like mine, that believe that people have a fundamental right to avoid being put under surveillance and that it should be easy for them to exercise that right. By contrast, it […]

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Virtual Brand Promoters Are So Lifelike, You Just Might Believe What You See

The kiss between Bella Hadid and Miquela Sousa, part of a Calvin Klein commercial last month, struck many viewers as unrealistic, even offensive. Ms. Hadid, a supermodel, identifies as heterosexual, and the ad sparked complaints that Calvin Klein was deceiving customers with a sham lesbian encounter. The fashion company apologized for “queerbaiting” after the 30-second […]

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A Tech Giant Hurt Your Business? Take a Number

SAN FRANCISCO — Oracle and the Handpulled Noodle would seem to have little in common. One is a multibillion-dollar software company in Silicon Valley with tens of thousands of employees all over the world. The other is a small Harlem spot that serves Chinese comfort food and is known for its tasty dumplings. But they […]

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Google Made $4.7 Billion From the News Industry in 2018, Study Says

$4,700,000,000. It’s more than the combined ticket sales of the last two “Avengers” movies. It’s more than what virtually any professional sports team is worth. And it’s the amount that Google made from the work of news publishers in 2018 via search and Google News, according to a study to be released on Monday by […]

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New Evidence of Age Bias in Hiring, and a Push to Fight It

MADISON, Ala. — Across the United States, mammoth corporations and family businesses share a complaint: a shortage of workers. As the unemployment rate has tunneled its way to a half-century low, employers insist they must scramble to lure applicants. The shadow of age bias in hiring, though, is long. Tens of thousands of workers say […]

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YouTube to Remove Thousands of Videos Pushing Extreme Views

YouTube announced plans on Wednesday to remove thousands of videos and channels that advocate for neo-Nazism, white supremacy and other bigoted ideologies in an attempt to clean up extremism and hate speech on its popular service. The new policy will ban “videos alleging that a group is superior in order to justify discrimination, segregation or […]

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Why Does Google Know Everything You’ve Bought on Amazon for the Past Six Years?

This article is part of a limited-run newsletter. You can sign up here. Last month, CNBC reported on a page in Google’s account settings titled “Purchases” — a month-by-month list of items you’ve bought across online services like Amazon and other apps that are collected via Google services like Gmail. It’s not quite fair to […]

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The Reason You Hate Online Ads

This article is part of a limited-run newsletter. You can sign up here. Recently, I published a chart of something called the Martech 5000 (also known in the industry as the LumaScape). It sounds high-tech and menacing, like a Transformer. Really, it’s just a map of the 7,040 companies that make up the “marketing technology […]

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