Snapchat Adds More Content; Car Makers Not Sharing The Data

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Content: Gateway To Revenue

Snapchat added some new publishers to its Discover content hub, among them BuzzFeed and Vox. The additions come after a redesign that makes Discover more prominent in Snapchat’s navigation. Snapchat’s ad prices, initially sky-high, have since fallen. Re/code’s Kurt Wagner and Peter Kafka point out, “Publishers make more money if they bring in advertisers for their channel. In other words, it pays to spend time and effort on the content.” Read more.

Protective Progressive

Car makers have been vocal in recent months about not sharing driver data from in-car consoles. But for the tech giants who are hungry for it, there may be other routes to access that information. Take, for instance, car insurers, which pay willing policyholders to monitor their driving. Whaddya say, guys? Alas, “We do not have plans to sell driving data as an additional revenue stream,” Progressive spokesman Jeff Sibel tells Bloomberg. “We know customers place a lot of trust in us to protect their data.” More.

Content Seizure

San Francisco-based ad agency Mekanism grabbed Epic Signal in a bid to own more branded content. Epic Signal works with brands like Bud Light and NBC, creating video campaigns that run across YouTube, Snapchat, Vine, Periscope and Instagram. Mekanism CEO Jason Harris tells Adweek the acquisition cost “several million,” and said, “We could come up with the concept and produce the content, but we were missing the way to distribute it to make a hit." Read on.

TV’s Summer Funk

The tectonic move from broadcast to streaming is playing out in painful ways for networks (and good ways for digital networks). Ad Age calls 2015 “a season of plummeting viewership stats.” “True Detective” is the top-rated scripted series this summer, for instance, but isn’t supported by ads. Meanwhile, the WSJ reports, Comcast is considering investments in Business Insider, Vox Media, BuzzFeed and Vice. Twenty-five percent fewer 18-34-year-olds watch prime-time TV than viewers over the age of 55, so TV companies increasingly will look to digital. Read more.

Booming Data

Palantir Technologies, a company that sells data mining software to clients on Wall Street and government agencies, announced a $450 million round of funding and a valuation of $20 billion. The company has raised about a billion to date, and is a key technology provider to the CIA and FBI. The market for human-tracking technology (whether consumers, citizens or suspects) appears to be thriving. Read on.

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