The “legitimate interest” provision in the GDPR will not save behavioral advertising and data brokers from the challenge of obtaining consent for personally identifiable data. As previous PageFair analysis illustrates, personally identifiable data (PII) will become toxic except where it has been obtained and used with consent once the General Data Protection Regulation is applied in May 2018. Even so, many advertising intermediaries believe that they can continue to use PII data without consent because of an apparent carve-out related to “legitimate interest” contained in the GDPR. This is a false hope.
Adblocking—and publisher responses to it—sit at the nexus of two trends: the increasing value of trust in the publisher-consumer relationship, and the emerging conditions of the new information market. The Internet turns many types of information that were once scarce and expensive into overabundant—and therefore cheap—commodities. By corollary, trust and attention have become increasingly valuable. In short: As information becomes cheap, trust becomes precious.
Online advertising is destroying itself. And it is doing so in a way that will fatally undermine online publishers' sustainability. Increasingly brash formats and data snooping by online advertisers are driving millions of people to sever publishers’ revenue lifelines by blocking all advertising. The outlook is very bleak indeed. Publishers’ are desperate to extract revenues from … Continue reading Online advertising is destroying itself.
This is a piece I originally published in Contagious.An understandable malaise in ad agencies surrounds all things digital. Low revenues on the one hand and a new answerability to metrics on the other are accompanied by a sense that digital formats remain largely underdeveloped, and that new, possibly unwelcome, surprises await. This is a moment … Continue reading Advertising’s historic pivot point
(This post also appeared in The Irish Times on 4 October 2012.) LAST FRIDAY, at The Workman’s Club on Wellington Quay in Dublin, an Irish technology start-up company called GetBulb was announced as the overall winner of The Irish Times Digital Challenge. GetBulb has produced a system that can rapidly create data visualisations suitable for … Continue reading An experiment in startups working with news media companies: looking back at The Irish Times Digital Challenge
This afternoon I was doing a prerecord for Drivetime, a popular show on RTE (Ireland's national radio station). I took a few minutes and wrote down some points I wanted to cover. We were due to discuss my new book A history of the Internet and the digital future so they cover the big picture … Continue reading Speaking notes on the digital future
I spoke on BBC World Service and then ABC radio on 9 December about Wikileaks. Transcript of the Australian interview below MP3 download audio This transcript was typed from a recording of the program. The ABC cannot guarantee its complete accuracy because of the possibility of mishearing and occasional difficulty in identifying speakers. Johnny Ryan: … Continue reading My interview on ABC Australian national radio about Wikileaks
Five star review on Amazon from top 10 Amazon reviewer (Rebecca Johnson) Rebecca Johnson does not generally review communications or Internet books, so a 5 star review from her shows that A history of the Internet and the digital future is assessable to a general audience. Full text of her review is below, but this … Continue reading Another 5 star review from an Amazon top 10 reviewer!
How the Internet was born By Jennifer Hunter Columnist Al Gore was ridiculed during the 2000 U.S. presidential election for supposedly claiming he had created the Internet. But digital technology expert Johnny Ryan says Gore’s comments to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer were misinterpreted. According to transcripts of the interview, says Ryan, Gore was taking credit merely … Continue reading The Toronto Star publishes feature interview with me about A history of the Internet and the digital future
Working on the forthcoming book. Here's a teaser the changed media environment... The theatres of the Elizabethan and Stuart eras were venues where ‘a thousand townsemen, gentlemen and whores, porters and serving–men together throng’, according to one contemporary account. The decorum of the modern theatre did not apply. Heckles and sometimes projectiles came at the … Continue reading New Audiences and the digital fourth wall