Happy News Year: The First 2013 Signal

What’s good for goose…?

Happy New Year! In today’s SIgnal: Figuring out the boundaries of online privacy ain’t easy; just ask Randi Zuckerberg and Callie Schweitzer; Is Facebook even trying anymore?; News Corp. accused of going “Capone”; Mayer to discuss Yahoo’s ad biz future in Vegas; the best ads that weren’t ads in 2012; Foursquare readies to change its privacy policy; and more

To the links …

A Valuable Lesson from Randi Zuckerberg: Online Privacy is Complicated (GIGAom) Randi Zuckerberg, the sister of Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg, got caught in a privacy snafu on Christmas Day after a private photo of her family was shared publicly. The problem started when Vox Media staffer Callie Schweitzer shared a funny photo on Twitter of the Zuckerberg family using the social network’s new Poke feature — an app that allows users to send messages or photos that self-destruct after a certain amount of time. Schweitzer apologized after Zuckerberg tweeted her displeasure, and said she believed the picture was public because it showed up in her feed. But the misunderstanding only served to prove that figuring out the boundaries of online privacy is not easy.

The Real Reason Facebook Should Worry. (Hint: It’s Not privacy, Wall Street, or Terms of Service) (Pando Daily) On the heels of the Zuckerberg/Schweitzer Twitter post snafu, founder and editor-in-chief of PandoDaily Sarah Lacy discusses a very real undercurrent that’s making the rounds in Silicon Valley that could hurt Facebook: A view that the giant social media platform can no longer innovate. Worse: That it’s no longer really even trying.

News Corp Accused of Hacking in U.S. Ad Wars (Courthouse News) The Dial Corp. sued News Corp. and its subsidiaries, claiming that Murdoch’s company used Al Capone’s tactics and computer hacking to monopolize the market for promotions in 40,000 retail stores and coupon inserts in “scores of newspapers nationwide.”

Yahoo’s Mayer Hoping What Happens With Big Advertisers at CES Doesn’t Stay in Vegas  (ATD) Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is apparently ready to address the topic of where the Silicon Valley Internet giant’s search and display advertising business is headed. Mayer is planning a series of appearances at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show, which is taking place in Las Vegas in less than two weeks. This news is important, since big agencies and advertisers have privately been grumbling about the lack of outreach by Yahoo and also how much more active execs at rivals such as Facebook, Google and AOL have been.

The Best Online Ads of 2012 Weren’t Ads (Pando Daily) The best online advertising is not advertising, according to Kirk Chefitz, at least not in the sense the industry defines an ad and counts the money spent on ads. “It’s the content that makes up the best native advertising, mostly on social channels; the non-ad, non-paid advertising that tells great stories, engages us and compels us to share these experiences with our networks,”  Chefitz, the founder of ad agency Story Worldwide, writes. “This is what we want to celebrate this year-end.” His picks include the Oreo “Daily Twist” campaign and Red Bull “Stratos.”

Foursquare Privacy Policy Change (BI) Beginning in a just a few weeks, not only will Foursquare checkins publicly display a user’s full name, but also venue owners wanting to take a closer look at checkins will have access to “more of those recent check-ins, instead of just three hours worth.” There’s no specification on how far back they’ll be able to look. Let the grumbling begin!

Ryan Block: Why I’m Quitting Instagram (NYT Bits) Ryan Block, former editor-in-chief of AOL’s Engadget and the co-founder of the popular tech community site Gdgt, writes  about his reasons for quitting Facebook and the Facebook-owned service Instagram. “In my search for technology products and services that somehow enrich or add value to my life,” he writes, “Facebook and Instagram have been a net negative not only in their usefulness, but also in other, subtle ways most people don’t often consider.”

Worldwide Ad Spend Grows Steadily, Bucking Economic Slowdowns (eMarketer) eMarketer estimates total media ad spending worldwide rose 5.4% this year to just under $519B — an uptick in the growth rate since 2011’s increase of 3.6%. Ad spending will continue to climb at a similar pace throughout eMarketer’s forecast period, which extends through 2016. By that year, eMarketer forecasts, worldwide ad spending will top $628B.

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