Beats Headphones Join iPads On List Of Products Banned From NFL Sidelines

Beats Headphones Join iPads On List Of Products Banned From NFL Sidelines

While NFL stars like Colin Kaepernick might love the Beats by Dre headphones they get paid to wear, they won’t be allowed to sport the fashionable headgear on the sidelines of their games, or even around their necks during post-game interviews, thanks to an exclusivity deal reached between the league and Bose. [More]

If Facebook Is Going To Label Satirical Stories, It Should Be Calling Out Ads Posing As News Links

I'm mostly doing this story so I can repeatedly share my Facebook profile photo of an 18-year-old me with a glorious head of 1993 hair.

Facebook began labeling certain shared links as “satire,” as a bit of hand-holding for its less-savvy users who can’t tell the difference between an actual news headline and one written by the writers of The Onion. But what Facebook really needs to do is start labeling so-called “native” or sponsored stories on non-satire sites so that your idiot friends might think twice before sharing a story that is really just an ad for some juice company. [More]

Comcast Makes Money Off Everest University Ads, Even As Schools Are Being Sold Or Closed

Comcast Makes Money Off Everest University Ads, Even As Schools Are Being Sold Or Closed

Earlier this summer, facing lawsuits and investigations from multiple state and federal agencies, Corinthian Colleges Inc. struck a deal with the U.S. Dept. of Education to either sell off or wind-down most its schools, including Everest University, WyoTech, and Heald College. Yet Corinthian continues to plague the airways with ads, enticing potential students into enrolling in schools that may not exist in a few months. And guess who is making money off the ads? The folks at Comcast. [More]

As Facebook begins selling info to advertisers about your browsing habits, it will roll out a feature that lets you see why you're seeing specific ads. Hint: It's because Facebook knows way too much about you.

Facebook Is Now Selling Your Web-Browsing Data To Advertisers

You know how it’s really creepy when you go looking for a new TV online and then go to Facebook and the ad spaces that you typically ignore are now populated with advertising for the very brands of TV you just checked out? Until now, they’ve been the product of third-party ad networks and creepy data aggregators like Acxiom while Facebook itself had kept its hands clean by not selling the data it had acquired about your Web browsing habits. But in an effort to bring you even creepier, more targeted ads, Facebook will now be making more info about you available to advertisers. [More]

Op-Eds In Favor Of Cable Company F*ckery Are Bought & Paid For By Cable Industry

(Dan Century)

Most of media coverage surrounding the net neutrality — or rather, cable company f*ckery — issue raise concerns about the current FCC plan, which would create an unbalanced, non-neutral Internet where the quality of data delivery depends on how much the sender is paying. A number of op-ed pieces have popped up in recent weeks cheering the plan on, or claiming that broadband competition is just fine (hint: it isn’t), but these are just fictions sponsored by the cable and telecom industries. [More]

This Sleazy Pitch Embodies The Worst Side Of Online Advertising

Click image to read the full e-mail from the marketing company.

Every day, our inboxes are slammed with laughably bad PR pitches that range from the unrelated — “tell your readers to check out our booth at the International Fly Fishing Film Festival” — to the hyperbolic — “this tip-figuring calculator app will literally change the way you dine out!” We don’t share these with you because, well… they’re just awful. But we recently received one that was both insidious and all-too-indicative of the ways in which marketers dangle money in front of blogs in order to get them to deliver on-message content. [More]

20 Years Ago, Only 1 Baseball Stadium Had A Corporate Sponsor; Now All But 9 Do

20 Years Ago, Only 1 Baseball Stadium Had A Corporate Sponsor; Now All But 9 Do

When the 1994 baseball season started, there was only a single MLB stadium whose name could be considered a result of corporate sponsorship (and the company owned the team at the time, so even that is up for debate). When the 2014 season kicks off this spring, fewer than one-third of the stadiums are without a corporate name over the gates. [More]

Ad-Filled Monopoly Game, Deluxe Virtual Tooth Fairy, Potty With iPad Stand Top List Of Year’s Worst Toys

Ad-Filled Monopoly Game, Deluxe Virtual Tooth Fairy, Potty With iPad Stand Top List Of Year’s Worst Toys

Do your kids feel that board games are ho-hum without advertising from some of the world’s biggest brands? Maybe your girls and boys are bored with the virtual tooth fairy they already have (yes, this exists) and the only way to make them happy is to pay more to unlock a VIP edition? Or does your potty-training youngster cry because he or she has to take their eyes away from the iPad for a few seconds while they do their digestive duty? Then we have some toys for you! [More]

The Many Ways Of Hiding An Ad As A “Sponsored Post”

The Many Ways Of Hiding An Ad As A “Sponsored Post”

Advertisers have always sought seamless integration of their brands into consumer-targeted content, driven by the notion that the audience is less irritated by a commercial if it doesn’t scream “I’m a commercial.” But at what point does that line get so fuzzy that it’s hard to tell the difference between the two? [More]

Buzzfeed makes no attempt to disguise sponsored content. Other sites take a stealthier approach.

Feds To Investigate The Fuzzy Line Between Advertising & Editorial Content

Call them “advertorials,” “sponsored stories,” “brand journalism,” or — the latest nonsense term — “native advertising,” but it’s all the same: An ad that looks an awful lot like — and is often not distinguishable from — a website’s editorial content. Since consumers have long stopped even noticing banners, click away from pages with auto-play video ads, and increasingly use mobile devices to go online, advertisers have turned to these ad-wolves in editorial sheep’s clothing. [More]

Searching for "Manziel" brings up his jersey, even though his name is nowhere on it or in the description.

Companies Profit Off College Football Players’ Names Without Having To Mention Players’ Names

Manufacturers of licensed NCAA jerseys are not allowed to produce items with players’ names on the back, allegedly to maintain the “amateur” image of college athletics and allow apparel companies to claim they aren’t making truckloads of cash on the shoulders of scholar/athletes who receive no direct money for all the tickets and merchandise sold each year. But search results on the NCAA’s own e-commerce site shows that the organization and apparel companies make money off players’ names without having to actually mention those names. [More]

Cowboys Stadium Is Now AT&T Stadium

Cowboys Stadium Is Now AT&T Stadium

As a Philadelphia Eagles fan, it would be very easy for me to say that football’s Emperor Palpatine finally has his Death Star, but I would never stoop so low as to make a joke like that. Rather, I’ll just straight out tell you that after four seasons, Cowboys Stadium now has a corporate name with today’s announcement that Tony Romo will soon be throwing clutch interceptions at the newly renamed AT&T Stadium. [More]

FTC To Search Engines: Do A Better Job Of Labeling Paid Search Results As Ads

FTC To Search Engines: Do A Better Job Of Labeling Paid Search Results As Ads

A decade ago, the Federal Trade Commission told the major Internet search engines that they should be more transparent about search results that received premium placement because the advertiser paid for it. The companies eventually obliged, but the FTC says that search engines have backslid and begun being less-than-transparent again, and that they could still do more to distinguish between ads and organic search results. [More]

Top Chef’s Padma Lakshmi On Product Placement: “It’s Hard To Make That Sh!t Sound Natural”

Top Chef’s Padma Lakshmi On Product Placement: “It’s Hard To Make That Sh!t Sound Natural”

The recent comedy flop The Internship took a lot of flack, and deservedly so, for being a feature-length ad for Google masquerading as a movie. But compared to some product-placement-packed reality TV shows, that film looks like a fiercely independent labor of love. [More]

Microsoft To Offer Ad-Free Version Of Bing For Schools

Microsoft To Offer Ad-Free Version Of Bing For Schools

While both Google and Microsoft’s Bing search engines have “safe search” options intended to let younger school children research reports on things like “backyard drilling” without getting results that might require a lot of awkward explanations from their parents, neither had offered an ad-free version. But in the fall, Microsoft will launch “Bing for Schools,” which promises not to invade our schools’ libraries with advertising. [More]

Google google google google google.

Google Referenced Once Every 2.3 Minutes In ‘The Internship’

Even after our product-placement round-up last week, we still haven’t seen two-hour Google ad called The Internship, and now it’s even less likely that we ever will, as someone who did see it went through and tallied up all the times Google or one of its properties is mentioned in the movie. [More]

Google google google google google.

From The Shameless To The Egregious, We Grade The Product Placements In 12 Ad-Packed Movies

You’ve probably seen the 30-second TV ads promoting that new 2-hour commercial for Google starring those two actors from that other movie that people really liked eight years ago. We’d like to think product placement has sunk to a new low, but every time we’re convinced that advertisers have hit bottom, someone throws them a more powerful digging implement. [More]

McDonald's Sponsors Prime-Time TV Documentary About McDonald's

McDonald's Sponsors Prime-Time TV Documentary About McDonald's

If you were to flip open the pages of your TV Guide and see that there was a documentary called “McDonald’s Gets Grilled” airing in prime time, you might assume that it’s a bit of McMuckraking, or at least a news organization’s look behind the counter at the fast food giant. But as viewers of Australian TV found out this week, it’s really just a 30-minute infomercial paid for by McDonald’s. [More]