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Why advertisers are blacklisting news…



BBC sounds music Radio podcasts hello welcome to the media show today, where is safe to advertise why some companies are running keyword lists to avoid their digital advertising sitting alongside news stories.

They believe are controversial the future funding of Public Service Broadcasting is a model being proposed in Ireland what does could follow even the BBC and the podcast network for children let me introduce you to our panel Matt Deegan is it runs the fun Kids digital radio stations here to talk about moving to podcasts among other things it's been reported Mass at the prime minister's top advisor Dominic Cummings is advising those at the top of government to avoid appearing on the Today programme wonder if a fresh pitch from the breakfast show on fun Kids love in the office.

There's always a place for him all the ministers on the Frankie's breakfast show with with Sean and robots every morning.

Please who when I get in touch with us with a crossover with Radio 4 from listening basis and they would like a place that that's safe in contact, but they don't have to worry about some of the new stories for the Covered them what they going to get on the station and messaging bit about listeners of self scheduling won't stop them listening to the guys from downstairs, but it means he might give us a bit of a listen to Boris Johnson at 8:10.

I can hear it now show negotiate senior tech reporter at Business Insider at welcome back this week.

I'm guessing you've been reporting on the latest news about Apple's forthcoming TV service and money has been thrown of this isn't it? Yes although in the grand scheme of what are throwing out? It's actually still a smaller amount of funding we know that Apple is sitting on a huge cash pile so it can afford to double and probably triple that amount who knows where.

The morning show has been catching the either hasn't tell us a bit about that and what planned so the morning show is are basically a bunch of adverts for what looks to be one of the shows has been has been going online you know you can say on YouTube and Twitter and so on and it's a show about the media starring Steve Carell Jennifer Aniston and Reese are all three very big name big name Hollywood actors and so that's the kind of drawers the apples clearly capable of drawing in this kind of Talent to make a flag so so that's pretty interesting that that's how they can and the suggestion is that each episode of that is it going to cost more than an hour of Game of Thrones I think it's been compared to as well.

I don't think the cost of being broken down play the three very expensive people you know audience is now expects extremely high production values even when they're streaming.

Now you know apple is creating a new service but it has to compete with very well-established services that amount of money that this content such as Amazon Netflix and all the established players who wants money or making these programs look very beautiful, so can't really come in after that November's in the diary then in that case let's start with an investigation published by the Wall Street Journal last week paper looks at the extent to which digital advertisers are now avoiding certain types of news stories with the use of keyword, blacklist these are lists of keywords associated with controversial topics for example racism immigration and trump feature frequently if an online news story contains one of those words than the concerned Advertiser stares at the Wall Street Journal found that some advertisers are now maintaining this stretch to over 1000 keywords so in effect.

It means publishers are now facing a boycott of regular news stories from the

Sizes on which they depend as those advertisers become ever more concerned about brand safety will remoulding is it works for a company called integral ad science you know all about advertisers come to you with their blacklist bees can run too many sheets of paper.

How do they look? How many depending on the Advertiser surely put yes, they can be 10:20 2000/2001 long.

So yes, it's broad as it is as long yeah, and what are they looking to avoid? What are they worried about worried about misplacement of their advertising and where the money spent.

I think they're concerned about brand association and rightly and rightly so they spend a lot of money.

We've seen the Times exposing 18 months ago and that's really snowballs in in terms of where we are around.

50 now for advertisers and ready quote the other day that you know that the average cmo ezy132 way from potentially losing his or her job so it's is a human Element to it as well, which I think we need to address you you mention the time in this relates back doesn't it to extremist content and adverts appearing alongside it the implications thereof being potentially disastrous for the advert absolutely yeah, that's that's let's be honest.

That's not an old.

This is not a new problem though.

This is still no this is no problem right, but you know it's become more prevalent as wishing more more more easy should expose across multiple channels as well.

I know you've got a lift in front of you.

I'm going to ask you to tread carefully through it all the reasons of this is still 16:30 what kind of words appearing on it.

Yes, I would say we pulled this this this this this morning and this is our top 20 block keywords globally by advertisers.

The first 10 hour of an upgrade but but I can I can certainly repeat them so we have things like explosion Isis terror we have bomb terrorist murder Massacre terrorism shooting bombing etc.

Etc, which are self-explanatory, but we're also getting into the political areas as well as I mentioned trump, so people might now your reference to Donald Trump if there an Advertiser and think I don't want to be alongside then no no no don't and also you know let's let's be honest garages is now kind of a highly keyword as well, and I think as I said advertised as you know are very very careful and conscious about where they want their advertising money spent now.

You know the argument could be that in we don't want to live in a society where by you know we could telling you know the Press And The press release and I don't think we'll get there yet, but

Certainly some of the major publications that we work with have expressed concern around that is there any thoughts in your mind that they're being a bit too careful here.

I'm in the likes of trump and Nigel Farage significant figures in our world.

Whether we like it or not to distance yourself from having an advert alongside a story that merely refers to them seems a little bit overcautious.

Yes potentially United to carry out as a technology as a piece of technology.

That is used by advertisers and publishers with we're not there to be judge or jury with her to be the technology that that the Advertiser looks to to to make the best of its ad placement and advertising spend but yes, I can I can certainly relate to to the publishers racing you are you with this and where does it go potentially do you think so? I'm aware of a publishers changing their content to appease.

Advertise advertise a concerns I think that's something that you know that is a golden rule that you very much try not to do that.

I think what era takes me a bit about that x investigation which refer to YouTube traditional publisher so obviously publishers do I have to write stories that I had to take to use the words offensive controversial controversial topics that these are facts based.

Hopefully and for the most part objective news stories.

That is not some random YouTuber rambling on or you know some of the point of Times article was that these kind of random videos which are associated with Tara content and there was no editorial and place checking what they were and that's how these odds went off again and it's not the same in a positive environment so I feel advertisers are carrying over their concerns around platforms that say that they're not media platforms and they say they're not publishes over to actual publishers who do exercise editorial control.

What's live and concerns that potentially have financial implications late because of an Advertiser says I don't want to go on that particular site or alongside that particular story less money comes into the organ that is putting the journalism out there the journalism my ultimate Lee suffer you think that's that's one of the greatest ironies sure and send me some of the publishers that we've been speaking to her now.

Look at it so for example any kind of breaking news content in a there is no strategy in place.

Whereby ads won't be placed alongside it until it properly vetted so so there is revenue implication against not doing that specific at the word Farage do we know who do you know I do but I don't want to stay snow ok? It's very interesting that it happening absolutely and you know the another example think about the emissions scandal for example.

So you know we're talking about.

Back you were blocking in a negative context which would fundamentally get but also they can be a positive aspect to this is worse you can target towards content that is suitable to your to your brand as as well, but yeah, we work with automotive brands that don't want to appear against for example emissions based content and can't I get away from that right.

So if you're what is a marketer car for example.

You don't necessarily tell me that says emission too bad.

I'm sitting alongside it exactly but then if you want to target an audience or a purchaser of a test driver or specific more motoring vehicle then then you can use it in a way.

Whereby you can you can use that time to get closer to that to that potential.

Is there anything in the argument that says that at the moment at least this seems to be a bit of a blunt instrument because clearly most of these words could appear in all manner of entirely innocuous.

Yes, I think that's fair and and that.

Saturday surfaced over the last few months primarily from publishers and I think as as content verification tools as that's what we list the cells being in a week.

We have a duty to ensure that our technology covers you know every eventuality, so you know we starting to think about context and how we can talk into context as well as part of our kind of longer product roadmap is also something called a sentiment analysis moderator.

Isn't there which basically determined mood of the reader one's here.

She is read the content of a given article.

Yes, that's that's certainly part of of other providers technology and tools.

I think if you were coming on the basis of what a reader reads.

How can that readers mood then be determined as an algorithm behind it fairly sophisticated.

Behind it and it's only a lot of comfort AI investiture behind it as well and as I S yeah.

We we are we have several ways of providing protection to advertisers and that's looking at what's within the content and how an Advertiser appears against that content on what risk associated with a contender happy with and then there's the other part which have the keyword peace and it's almost like the two can can complete the dates and South sometimes.

We would encourage the advertisers that we look look at that lists.

Are they being didn't go through the list if they strip out keywords that are old for example so for example.

We work with advertising still have Ariana Ariana Grande or London Bridge within a keyword list.

That's not good.

You know that was at least 2 years ago those days at least that's something we need to encourage and again that's on the advertisers.

Keywords in the mood of readers been examined as well, you look sceptical as you were that.

I just think the time sentiment analysis is a little I don't know how can you capture the new one, so what are beta is thinking about? There's obviously going to be some news stories where it's clear that the the impact on the reader will probably be negative or positive one but for many stories.

That's going to be a highly nuanced depending on their for example political stance anything that is a little tricky and I think a lot of these maybe I'm very sceptical about AI and the promises of a I'm sure there will be more sophisticated tools and time that can determine the sex but I'm I'm a little sceptical for now is a brief final thought it's just a digital issue because clearly adverts appear alongside a printed editions of newspapers and the same as not seem to apply.

Yeah, I think that from my point of view.

I think it's very much at a digital distillation.

Yeah.

Ok, thank you very much indeed from digital advertising to a future funding model for public.

Broadcasting which is being proposed in Ireland the TV licence system similar to the one which operate in the UK would be replaced by a fee that applies to a mobile a laptop a tablet in other words any device that might give you access to television and radio programs the idea is that it would more accurately correlate with people's modern-day viewing and listening habits, but it's not without it's critics in a moment.

You're here from Laura Slattery a media journalist with the Irish Times first d Forbes director general of Ireland public service broadcaster RTE who died me through her patients current funding system beginning of its model about 50% of revenue comes from commercial advertising Wii to TV channels who between them therapy the entire population and we have some radio service as well, so we can sell advertising across the piece and 50% from the licence fee.

Been changing over the last number of years because both revenue streams have been challenged.

There has been an ongoing downturn in the advertising market coupled with in Division in this marketplace, so we have some very particular challenges.

Let me bring you in on what is being proposed by the government in the context of what we just heard from the for this is to replace the quote TV licence with a and I quote again device independent broadcasting charge from 2024.

How would you enforce a system whereby the ownership of a phone or tablet or a computer would require you to pay some sort of lump sum of the big question and so far.

I'm in communications has openly said he doesn't know how he would enforce this.

So what they said it would be a device-independent charge, but we don't know yet.

It does that mean that there is a list.

Some devices that bring you into the eligibility loop or is it a household charge where every household in the country pays them so give us a little bit of context as to why we've got to this point now already proportion of people who she is in a traditional TV set to watch television content as we speak it's about 10% of households that don't use a traditional TV set and essentially that means that tens of millions of Euros could be going to RTE Orchestra Public Service Broadcasting on in Ireland that isn't because those households are making contribution so it let me know kind of a musical move and also support across the industry for a change in the definition of who should pay to support Public Service Broadcasting but unfortunately I think the support you no apolitical.

And possibly new cross sections of the public is really only theoretical when it comes to actually going ahead and introducing it.

It's a little bit more.

I want to get into that the broadcaster.

Play, you say quite like at the sense of possible changes here because of some of the funding problems that Dee Forbes mentioned them over to go the wider reaction is what I suppose you would see flare of hostility whenever this is mentioned people who aren't currently eligible to pay a television licence fee again because maybe don't have a TV don't like the idea of being brought into this look.

I think younger audiences.

You know they just don't remember I guess the original rationale for a Public Service Broadcasting authority has always faced competition from overseas broadcasters including the BBC now the competition is just so vast and some younger people might even ask why do we need or to either maybe not as familiar with the economic survey?

Except the doubts exist especially among younger listeners and viewers who might frankly not watch RTE or listen to RTE and might think why if I've got a phone in my hand, do I suddenly have to pay a lump sum for it a lot of research.

We have done a lot of anecdotal evidence we have is that yes, when people are younger? They may not see the value perhaps of the National cancer however that does change as you get a little bit older but also I think we are seeing now.

Is that there is real engagement from younger audiences with our content we recently launched an RTE Player hear it.

Can I claim in the UK and we're getting incredible traction on that player so I think it's not as if the younger audiences are not watching.

I think what they want to be able to do is what when they want where they want.

There is a point about if funding is tired of a new model is being looked at there will be some who say frankly RTE do a little bit less than you do now.

How do you respond to that?

We've been operating with 100 million in funding since wait so unfortunately we have had to do a little bit less over the years and I think right now.

It's important to say that we are in a review process to really try and see what needs to happen to sustain the organisation.

We have been doing everything we can to protect content to ensure that you know as much money as possible on the screen on the airwaves, but we have come to a place where it's just not simply feasible to continue as we are worried about the wider public service model finally at Laura Slattery when you look at what's been proposed here could potentially be something that others not only look at around the world, but potentially follow that we're behind even where you are with the BBC in the you don't have to pay a licence for you here for using the RTE Player behind the Vampire the same way you do if you have to register for the iPlayer in the UK so we would say rather than people following US

Playing catch up on on in some areas, but you know we don't know what's going to happen over the next 510 years in terms of how we consume but we can get that is going to involve a vast array of devices, so there needs to be a broader definition and elusive definition and we need to sort of this pretty soon.

I would say because otherwise this kind of background crisis is going to release of take its toll on National culture, the Irish Times you heard as well Dee Forbes director general of RTE quick thoughts on this public service funding model is there anything there? Do you think that others might follow is interesting that the point being behind the BBC I remember the period of I briefly didn't own a TV for a few years just because I moved into a flat and was too lazy to get hold of one so I was watching iPad

My laptop and for what I didn't have to pay a licence fee I did and I know the BBC countdown on that for the stuff, but it didn't make sense to me, but I think it involves tapping into a nostalgia that I can't for the BBC so I didn't feel too upset about it of the new now.

Ok was probably about time I do pray that she and I think that's to the point about culture is you really need to believe to bring the public with you need to believe that that the state broadcaster all the same Media provider is it necessary to the culture and that's why you pay that money so you have to tap into that believed.

I think I feel the beat goes on very well now.

I mentioned and other things runs fun Kids the digital children's radio station here is a brief flavour of a clip from George's Hall it was this week that One Direction star and man who has curtains for Clothes Harry Styles has turned down the role of prince Eric in Disney's upcoming live action.

Play Little Mermaid it's disastrous and there was me thinking Harry and Ariel were made for each other I can hear that just before Boris Johnson 9:10 funky does branch into children's podcasts.

It's just launched the fun Kids podcast network, what is it? What can I say two things are so fun kids who is made podcast we can do that for a number of years and is popular and it's growing just as podcasting is growing when we talk to other people in in the sector who kids content what we what we found out was that they suffer from some of the things that we did not really days.

It has a monetized to have a pay for to make that content for their effort at a time when maybe audiences grow and what we thought was actually if we could bring some of those podcast altogether use our sales team and our relationships with providers like apple podcasts in Spotify and we could help those greater audience.

Also business model around what they do and also allowance with anybody in this space to launch a children's podcast quicker if you look at all the podcast in the UK used a category to do very well.

You know how about true Crime all comedians and comedy podcast and parenting is a hugely successful kind of vertical in in the in the podcast space and we see kids content behind but growing in markets like America where there's been more kids content in the podcast form those have been more successful and keeps contact number of different heading so entertainment education a lot of different areas book shows science programming but the story programming in there as well that from from other operators to we've been working with the week junior which is magazine for 6248 14-year olds and working with them to the weekly news and current.

And that's something that they've got excellent skill and and tell him doing that and we help them and make that insert into an audio, so I converted amuse me this morning when I read that program helps helps make sense of the world and write down here good luck with your parents have been saying it's been useful for the end of the world.

What about the funding model how does how does that look so is it a commercial operation and the broadcast radio station has been commercially funded and we're going to do the same thing for the podcast network extension English and what we've heard so far when we talk to her and safety hugely important around children's content and for advertisers historically they had a great platform for advertising to families and that's television and most cutest television but because of the rise of Netflix and other services actually doesn't reach all children like it used to and some of those advise not have to look at home.

Platform see what they do on YouTube I want to go onto digital platforms let you know that I can reach children.

Do that unless the radio station or through a podcast network to me, so your keyword black literally would not take out my shop Peppa Pig yes, it doesn't apply it doesn't know what about the growth in podcast particularly and young people showing that the massive Rise appears to be in this.

That's really interesting that the diversity of content that is now available and diversity of distribution platforms.

You know my friends are also becoming new parents night interesting New Zealand scrambling for safe Media to put in front of their kids because YouTube is a bit of a wild west still I know it's got a YouTube kids dedicated up, but sometimes that can lead you down to a with dark places and so you know they really and I think to be honest it can be very lucrative for the providers that they can guarantee of unsafe environments because parents will pay you know.

Armani to get hold of an app that's completely safe and they can perhaps either kids with for an hour an hour or so, you know more than the flight on a car journey, so I think it makes perfect on that point about it being rude if you get it right absolutely scale and you and your trusted then you can do while in what we know is that 41% of 9 to 14 to listen to a podcast and 19% listen to some each week, so it's a significant chunk of kids are already jumping into that space going back to what you said about the week junior showing I know I was being slightly flipping about understanding the world, but there is element which seems to me there is an element of public service about what you're doing something old fashioned about it something maybe the door to be coming out of this building new kids audio from anybody including to be good thing and rice in Thai curry sauce ships.

I think what we think about with children is at school.

They get exposed to a huge amount of stuff science literature life learning.

Music Pop Culture and the job of our radio station is to reflect all of those things as is what we do in the podcast Space 2 and they'll be more coming into this sort of podcast umbrella.

Yes, so there's more launches coming in the next few months and some other partners with us as well right so we can look out for a more developments in in the coming weeks and months that very much indeed that is it for today's programme Don't Forget of course.

You can always subscribe to the media Show podcast on BBC sounds it seems appropriate to mention podcast in the light of the last conversation.

You will never miss an episode if you do many thanks to all of my guests today.

Thanks.

Julie moulding.

Thank you and putting your listing and trading carefully read it.

Thanks to Shona Ghosh and to Matt Deegan thank you very much for listening the media show at the same time next.


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