/ Weekly Takeaways

Netflix Betas Ads Between Shows, The Web Gets More Personal and AI That Tracks Hackers

Netflix Beta Tests Ads for Other Shows While You Binge

In a small number of markets, Netflix has been rolling out advertising for their shows in between episodes. Users experiencing the change have written comments like this one:

After the episode ended, I got a screen saying "More Shameless up next... " then the title card slid off screen, and it continued with, "but first check out Insatiable" [a Netflix-exclusive series] and started playing the trailer.

It appears as though Netflix hasn't offered any warning about the changes and there's no information as to who will be affected or when, so it sounds like we're all going to get this "feature".

Key Takeaway

Netflix is breaking their social contract with their customers.

We all have a long standing social contract with media companies. We'll listen to ads in exchange for free content. This is how radio was paid for, then television. Over time though, we got used to paying for premium content in exchange for two things:

  1. Great content (e.g. HBO - which was one of the earlier examples of this)
  2. No ads

For now, showing me previews of other shows isn't so bad, and other services like Amazon Prime video are already doing this, but most Netflix users got used to a complete absence of it. Introducing them to it now might not be the end of the world, but it could be a slippery slope if they introduce other forms of advertising. Let's hope they don't turn the new world of content streaming, into the old world of cable television.

Mutiny Creates Highly Personalized Web UX

A new startup out of Silicon Valley, Mutiny, has been getting headlines for its efforts in building a B2B platform that personalizes web experiences. Unlike typical marketing automation that allows marketers to preplan customer segments and related content, Mutiny automates the process and makes recommendations based on data coming from the site. TechCrunch shows some decent screenshots of the app in action: https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/17/y-combinator-mutiny/

Key Takeaway

There have been many startups that have come before Mutiny to try and tackle this space from AI driven CMSs to more modern forms of ABM (Account Based Marketing), but if Mutiny does this right, they could be the next big thing in Marketing Automation nay, B2B marketing.

That being said - they'll need a serious amount of data to get access to for this to work properly, and most marketers are just starting to get the mechanics of this stuff right.

AI Can Identify Authors of Code

New research shows that it's possible to track down the author of a piece of code with 90 - 95% certainty. It's similar to how handwriting and style can be used to identify an author; however, in an age of cyber-terrorism, this technology might be a newly needed form of forensics.

Key Takeaway

Nearly every week we're seeing new uses of Machine Learning and other types of AI. Sometimes it goes too far, like the recent issue with facial recognition involving Amazon and the ACLU, but as we approach 100% certainty with any of the algorithms, we get closer to truly useful AI.

In communications, there's already amazing potential for AI in applying similar analysis to fake news, which hopefully means we'll see even less fake news as we're able to track down content created by someone like Alex Jones.

Netflix Betas Ads Between Shows, The Web Gets More Personal and AI That Tracks Hackers
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