Josh Sternberg on Twitter's New Chief, User Tracking and the Vice Media Sale

On this week's episode of The MadTech Podcast, Josh Sternberg, executive editor, Morning Brew, joins ExchangeWire's head of content John Still and CEO Rachel Smith to discuss Linda Yaccarino's appointment as Twitter CEO, the sale of Vice Media after it files for bankruptcy, and identity as a targeting tool.

Linda Yaccarino appointed new Twitter chief

Will Yaccarino be able to revive Twitter’s advertising business? Does Twitter still offer a valuable outlet for publishers, and a valuable platform for journalists?

Elon Musk has said he was "excited" to appoint Linda Yaccarino as Twitter’s new CEO. In a tweet to his 139 million followers on Friday (12th May), Musk said he was "looking forward to working with Linda to transform this platform into X, the everything app".

Musk divulged that Ms Yaccarino will focus primarily on business operations, while he will remain closely involved with product design and new technology. Dubbed the the "Velvet Hammer" within advertising circles, Yaccarino has been described as “Ideal for the job” by Sir Martin Sorrell.

Vice Media files for bankruptcy ahead of sale

What went wrong at Vice and how did shifts in media consumption impact them? Did they over-stretch? How are publishing models changing? 

Vice Media has filed for bankruptcy protection ahead of a proposed sale. On Monday (15th May), the company said it had agreed a sale to a consortium of its lenders, on the condition that it remain open to higher bids from other interested parties.

The group, which encompasses Vice News, Motherboard, Refinery29, and Vice TV, was once considered a blistering presence in the digital media landscape and won a multibillion-dollar valuation based on its popularity with millennials.

Identity as a marketing tool at turning point

What models could replace user-tracking? How are publishers setting themselves up for the coming changes?

Research from Ogury and IDC has found that a majority of marketers believe user tracking will soon become obsolete. The survey of 1,000 agency and marketing executives also uncovered that only 40% of respondents are familiar with non-cookie based options.

32% stated they will change the type of ad tech supplier(s) they are working with, with 64% of these respondents stating they will increase budgets toward suppliers that don’t rely on third-party cookies or any personal data collection.

Despite this, 41% of all respondents are only somewhat, if at all, familiar with non-cookie-based targeting methods.