Media Oxpecker: Nobody Knows Anything

Media news you may have missed this week while you were busy making it rain.

  • Ever wonder what goes on in the online video ad marketplace? So does everyone else, including the participants:

    Given the nearly $3 billion a year now spent on online video ads, and the 57 percent of them that are deemed unviewable, it’s safe to assume that American brands are now spending more than $1 billion a year on marketing that few if any people see.

    OK, but that depends on what the meaning of the word “unviewable” is. Surely some individual advertisers have had successful campaigns?

    Many of the ads were running in tiny players, 3 inches by 2 inches, on the sites. Some were auto-playing. But disappointment turned to rage when [the advertiser] read the list of domain names where the ads were running; it included pornographic websites. The team opened one site with an especially lewd name and gaped in horror. “Oh my God,” some shouted. Others cursed. Ms. VanHeirseele picked up her phone to call the media buyer in a fury.

  • Well at least we can count on the validity of digital circulation figures … right?

  • And don’t even get Adrian Chen started on Twitter’s credibility problem. His solution: De-verify users who tweet (or retweet) false reports.

  • If only we lived in a simpler time, when you could actually trust the news.

  • Turns out that all that effort it took to build your Facebook fans was a waste of resources:

    As Facebook matured as a business, it decided to ratchet back the reach of brands when they post. Privately, Facebook execs have admitted that organic reach will go to near zero. The message is: Pay up if you want to reach all those fans. That’s left brands rethinking how much they want to make Facebook core to their strategies.

  • 63-year-old Jet Magazine ditches print and goes online only.

  • “Vision is an important part of being a good editor, but so is teamwork and grace.” A 60-second interview with Mother Jones co-editor Clara Jeffery.

  • How to be a writer.

  • And now, a message from Andrew Sullivan: “Native advertising. Sponsored content. What the fuck does that mean? Branded content? For fuck’s sake. As soon as they start giving you gibberish, you realize they’re doing something naughty.”

  • Amanda Hess on how Maureen Dowd won a Pulitzer by painting Monica Lewinsky as a “a little nutty and a little slutty.”

  • How websites today would report the Monica Lewinsky scandal.

  • Read this and come to the horrible realization that you are old and will never understand young people ever again.

  • And finally, in defense of plain language:

    The thing about writing a sentence a fifth-grader can read is that maybe a fifth-grader will read it. Or maybe somebody with a fifth-grade education will. And if that person understands what you’re saying – provided you have something to say – your sentence has made the world better. You have helped another human being make sense of things. That’s what a writer is supposed to do.

Jason Zaragoza doesn’t always know what the Media Oxpecker is supposed to do, but if that Gawker story on Vine superstars is any guide, he’s doing something horribly wrong.

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