Ad Tech and Privacy

Street Fight’s March Theme: Pursuing Privacy

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This post is the latest in our “Pursuing Privacy” series. It’s our editorial focus for the month of March, and you can see the rest of the series here

As we start to see at the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, the world is shifting attention to the prominent matters that occupied mindshare before Covid hit. One of those back-burned topics is privacy.  Before the world was turned on its head, the privacy dynamics surrounding ad and martech were upended. 

You remember the sequence: GDPR rolled out in 2019, followed in 2020 by California’s corresponding legislation, CCPA. Non-legislative moves have arguably more impact, including the death of the third-party browser cookie, Apple’s location tracking alerts, and its deprecation of IDFA.

This is where we’re picking things up in our March editorial focus: “Pursuing Privacy.” You may have noticed our monthly themes — last month focusing on retail transformation and January on “turning the page.”

Back to privacy, the topic is of course central to the future of local media and commerce, given sensitivities and shifting strategies around location data collection. The companies that occupy this space — including the likes of Foursquare and PlaceIQ — have to innovate around new restrictions. Digital advertising as a whole is grappling with how to target customers in the privacy era.

One possible outcome we’ve theorized is a shakeout in the location intelligence sector. The space has gotten crowded and supply-saturated as location data companies have come out of the woodwork. Now the bar is raised, given iOS13 and various legislation, to acquire data responsibly.

We’re already seeing the effects of this as consolidation helps companies pool resources and gain capabilities for data collection and collectively larger networks of tracked devices. As Street Fight contributing editor Mike Boland wrote in December, this M&A activity will likely continue into 2021. 

We’ll tackle these questions and others throughout the month. And though this builds on our monthly cadence of thematic coverage, we’ll also continue to cover all local commerce happenings reactively on a daily basis. That includes the continuation of last month’s theme: Disrupting Retail.

So look out for the tag  Pursuing Privacy”  throughout March. We’ll label posts so you can discover them daily or actively browse them. Coverage will include our own daily reporting, as well as analytical dives from our growing network of columnists and contributors.

Speaking of which, we’ll take this chance to remind you about our editorial contributor program. If you have unique perspectives, we’d love to hear from you. We’ll prioritize submissions that make concrete assertions about the future of the industries we cover, especially the monthly theme.

We’ve also begun a new ritual in 2021. Each month, we’ll be aggregating comments from thought leaders that align with the monthly theme (like this). If you’re a privacy expert or enthusiast, we’d love to include your voice in the chorus. 

Reach out to us with suggestions for monthly themes, opportunities to contribute, or to amplify your brand messaging alongside this thematic coverage. This includes Street Fight’s new Thought Leaders program.

Stay tuned for much more this month.