Yesterday's newsletter was so drearily fact-filled, and on the eat-you-broccoli topic of data protection, no less. So today let's look at big picture things. We'll start with the future of advertising itself. Here’s a piece about Amazon threatening to supplant Google and Facebook as the main channels for reaching customers. This isn't just speculation: Amazon already has $1.2 billion in ad revenue and is developing ad tech tools to support future growth. A related item describes making interactions with the Alexa voice interface more human-like. Voice interactions could make conventional advertising entirely irrelevant, giving Amazon and other voice appliance owners even greater control over their customers' purchasing.
Speaking of big pictures, Snapchat is rumored to be working on a technology to overlay virtual billboards on real-world surfaces. “Augmenting reality with more branded content” is how the article describes it. The “more” in that sentence is delightfully ambiguous: does it express excitement or dread? And how much branded content is already in augmented reality?
Here’s another mixed blessing. The new chief of the Federal Communications Commission is expected to overturn rules that required consumer consent before Internet Service Providers like Verizon and Comcast could monetize the behaviors of their customers. Net neutrality is on the chopping block too. Ad industry leaders are happy. Privacy advocates, not so much.
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