Category Archives: Philosophy

Profit Maximization, Humanity Minimization

Facebook stepped in it again, this time by allowing users of their advertising platform to target users via vile anti-Semitic terms. Do I think the people or the company is anti-Semitic? Of course not. I think the company* is anti-human. … Continue reading

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AdTech: The Worst Server Room Ever

We get a kick out of images like this one at the left. How in the world could somebody let a system get so out of control? When Alan Kay shows this picture, he points out that every wire was … Continue reading

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Thought Experiment: Am I Just an Example of Survivorship Bias?

I’ve been a fairly successful continuity marketer, CMO, whatever. As such I’ve got a lot of what I think are good ideas about how to do marketing-type things. But what if I’m just an example of an outlier that’s made it … Continue reading

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Source Level Triage

Let’s assume you’ve built your marketing whiffletree and have a banding model at the source level that you can analyze every Monday. Of course, you’ll sort your sources from most effective to least and do more of the things that … Continue reading

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Live by the Algorithm, Die by Same

Think your fancy, all-seeing algorithm can’t be gamed? So do the fools at Uber. Unfortunately, it looks like Uber drivers can just switch off the app at once and trigger surge pricing. No complicated competing algorithm, no data scientists needed. Complex … Continue reading

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DSP Transparency

Do your DSP(s) have any rebate agreements with ad exchanges or anybody else? If not, great! Is that explicitly laid out in the contracts you have with them, and do you have full audit rights? And if not, why not? … Continue reading

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Your Mission and Vision are Lousy

I was talking about company mission and vision statements with Paresh Shah, a good and smart friend of mine. During the discussion, he gave me a simple rule to see if your mission was good or not: “Write out the … Continue reading

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Automation and Digital Marketing

Why are digital marketing vendors so obsessed with automating the processes involved in advertising? Continue reading

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Why Are We Eliminating The Human?

David Byrne wrote an eloquent piece yesterday, in which he said: “Our random accidents and odd behaviors are fun—they make life enjoyable. I’m wondering what we’re left with when there are fewer and fewer human interactions. Remove humans from the … Continue reading

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Fake News Root Cause: Digital Advertisers

Somewhere in our rush to use digital media, we got obsessed with reach and the size of audiences (the magic word again) and impressions. We got taken for a ride by the ad tech industry hucksters, who built an almost-perfect money-making machine on top of fake inventory created on phony websites. Continue reading

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