Tuesday, July 03, 2018

Facebook Isn’t Silicon Valley’s Only Problem -- NYT

A timely personal data reality check; on a related note, see Interpublic is near a deal to buy Acxiom's marketing solutions unit for around $2.2 billion (CNBC)
"Take, for instance, the industry’s widespread but largely nontransparent partnerships with data brokers — companies that are in the business of quietly collecting an enormous amount of sensitive personal data and selling it to whoever will pay for it. Facebook announced recently that it will shut down Partner Categories, the feature that allows data brokers to pipe sensitive information — like your personal interests and behaviors — into Facebook’s advertising management system. That allows marketers like Chanel or the N.B.A. to target you with digital ads that they predict you will find relevant. Facebook’s pivot was both necessary to protect individual privacy and long overdue.

But the use of data provided by leading data brokers like Acxiom, Experian and Oracle — which typically disclose very little about what kinds of personal data they have and how they use it — is still commonplace across the internet, and most tech companies are willfully uncommunicative about the nature of their commercial partnerships with data brokers. Digital marketers still purchase access to tools and products provided by data brokers and apply them in ad campaigns on major internet platforms as a matter of everyday business."
Facebook Isn’t Silicon Valley’s Only Problem -- NYT
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