More Calls For Fed Action Against Social Platforms; SintecMedia Rebrands As Operative

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Social Backlash

Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday, Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota said she would support legislation fining social media companies that don’t weed out political bot accounts. “These are the most sophisticated companies in America. … I believe that they’ve got to put more resources – maybe it means they make less profits off of ads and other things – but they’ve got to put (in) the resources.” More at Bloomberg. However, Klobuchar added that the idea wouldn’t have support to be considered. “There are too many people that are afraid of doing something about this because we know these sites are popular,” she said.

Social Backlash, Cont.

CNN President Jeff Zucker has joined the grumbling crowd of investors and media execs advocating antitrust enforcement against online ad platforms. “The fact is nobody, for some reason, is looking at the monopolies that are Google and Facebook, and that’s where the government should be looking and helping to make sure that everyone else survives,” Zucker said on stage at Mobile World Congress in response to a question about Disney’s $52 billion acquisition of 21th Century Fox. CNN has been at the center of its own regulatory maelstrom since the Justice Department sued to block AT&T’s $85 billion deal for Time Warner (which owns Turner, which owns CNN). “That’s probably the biggest issue facing the seriousness and growth of journalism in the years ahead.” More at Adweek.

Advanced TV Backbone

SintecMedia is rebranding as Operative and will unite its digital and traditional ad ops platforms under a single interface, Mike Shields reports for Business Insider. SintecMedia acquired Operative in 2016 to bring a digital component to its legacy tools. Just over a year later under new CEO Lorne Brown, the company will refocus on building a connective layer between its digital and traditional ad ops tools to bring reporting and management closer together and help legacy media giants operate for a digital world. "Everyone knew TV was going to a different place when it comes to ad sales tactics," Brown said. "It's just happening much faster than we thought." More.


The general consensus is that GDPR will strengthen Google and Facebook’s position in the market, but some are pushing the idea that the duopoly’s prominence makes them bigger targets for privacy advocates, writes Digiday. Others call that wishful thinking. “They do have big targets on their backs ... but they’ve both been sucking up to regulators for the last few years and have built privacy tools far better than anything publishers or ad tech have,” says publisher consultant Paul Lomax. More.

On The ’Scent

Ascential, the B2B publishing company that owns the Cannes Lions Festival and other properties, announced a strategic review and the expected sale of its exhibitions arm, which operates lesser-known tech and creative events. Ascential is reshaping its business around the Cannes festival and new media. Last year, it sold off 11 trade journals without media or marketing relevance, reports the Evening Standard. More. Ascential also acquired the strategic consultancy MediaLink a year ago. “We understood early what can happen at a tentpole event if you bring disparate parties together in a room,” MediaLink CEO Michael Kassan told AdExchanger at the time.

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