AT&T's First Sponsored Data Customers Are Advertisers
Sponsored Data allows certain content to not impact AT&T user caps if
the content creator pays AT&T a fee. Net Neutrality advocates have argued that the idea unfairly gives bigger companies
a leg up over smaller companies, who may not be able to afford the fee to have their content highlighted in such a fashion. AT&T has spent the last few years insisting that numerous companies think their Sponsored Data approach is good idea
, yet nobody has signed on for the plan.
Well, not nobody -- just not in the way AT&T envisioned. Advertisers like Hershey's and Cut the Rope games have signed up for the idea, though it's different from what AT&T originally proposed
At least initially, it appears that AT&T's Sponsored Data program is being used almost exclusively by mobile advertising companies to defray the cost of users' access to mobile video advertisements. For example, Aquto founder and CEO Susie Kim Riley said that Hershey's is using the service to allow AT&T customers to view its video ads without worrying about those ads cutting into their monthly data allotment. And, she said, the results are significant--mobile users are 100 percent to 300 percent more likely to watch a mobile video ad if they know the cost of the data is subsidized, she said.
Some might argue that unrequested ads shouldn't count against an arbitrarily-imposed usage cap in the first place. The FCC has previously stated they'll keep an eye on AT&T's project
to ensure there's no anti-competitive shenanigans.
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Some might argue that unrequested ads shouldn't count against an arbitrarily-imposed usage cap in the first place.
Some might argue that advocating for net neutrality but then state ad data should be treated differently than other data( even if for the benefit to the consumer ) goes against NN and thus is hypocritical.