Welcome to the 58th episode of the Mediatwits podcast, with Mark Glaser and Rafat Ali as co-hosts. This week, we take a look at the changes in coverage of the presidential debate, with live-streaming online, instant fact-checks and added context, and even “live-GIF’ing.” Tumblr’s Christoper Price and the Sunlight Foundation’s Bill Allison talk about the hits and misses during the debates and how @FiredBigBird went viral. Does it add more to the debate or is it all a big distraction?

Then we look deeper at the challenges for mobile advertising. For years, experts said mobile ads would rule, and now with so many more people getting news on mobile devices, the time has come. So why are they falling short? We talked to the IAB’s Joe Laszlo, AdAge’s Jason Del Rey and consultant Chetan Sharma to find out how advertisers and publishers can improve the mobile ad experience. Simply repurposing online ads on mobile isn’t the answer, but what is?


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Guest Bios

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Christopher Price

Christopher Price is editorial director of Tumblr. He’s created 178 Tumblogs, including his main one, TopherChris. He’s been with Tumblr since 2009 and will be involved in a new outlet composed entirely from Tumblr stories.

Bill Allison is the editorial director for Sunlight Foundation Reporting. Bill has spent the better part of his career reporting on lobbyist influence in Washington, campaign finance transparency and earmarks. He is a veteran investigative reporter and editor.

Joe Laszlo is senior director of the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence. Joe manages many of the IAB’s mobile standardization, best practices, and research projects. Prior to the IAB, Joe had an eight-year tenure at Jupiter Research, where he started researching and writing about mobile interactivity in 2000.

Jason Del Rey is a reporter at Advertising Age, where he writes about digital media and advertising technology. He was previously the senior reporter at Inc. magazine, where he wrote about startups and other fast-growing, privately-held companies across all industries. You can follow him on Twitter @DelRey.

Bill Allison

Chetan Sharma is Founder and President of Chetan Sharma Consulting. He is a recognized industry expert in strategy and implementation of wireless data and pervasive computing solutions. He has served as an advisor to senior executive management of several Fortune 100 companies in the wireless space and is probably the only strategist to have advised each of the top 6 global mobile data operators.

Our show is now on Stitcher! Listen to us on your iPhone, Android Phone, Kindle Fire and other devices with Stitcher. Find Stitcher in your app store or at stitcher.com.

Intro and outro music by 3 Feet Up; mid-podcast music by Autumn Eyes via Mevio’s Music Alley.

Highlights from the Show


1:00: Rafat shows off Skift at Paley Center

2:20: MediaShift Mixer coming to Paley Center in NYC Oct. 23

3:40: Rundown of topics on our show

Joe Laszlo

Presidential debate extended online

5:00: Special guests Christopher Price and Bill Allison

7:00: Price: Tumblr hosted a debate-watching party with animated GIF artists

9:30: Allison: We provide context instead of live fact-checking online

12:45: How did Big Bird go viral?

15:20: Why did the Debates Commission squelch participation?

16:50: Allison: Referee or umpire might have done a better job moderating than a journalist

Challenges for mobile ads

17:20: Special guests Joe Laszlo, Jason Del Rey and Chetan Sharma

Jason Del Rey

20:00: Del Rey: Small screen size is a challenge for advertisers

22:10: Laszlo: IAB wants to improve mobile ads with standard formats

25:30: Sharma: Rather than measuring impressions on mobile, making sales is better

27:30: Laszlo: Advertisers can also use responsive design for ads

30:50: Sharma: Industry needs to improve user control over data collection, tracking on mobile

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Chetan Sharma

More Reading

Six Digital Takeaways from the Denver Debate at Forbes

Tumbling the Election at Tumblr

The First Presidential Debate on Sunlight Live

The missing ingredient from hyperwired debates: the feedback loop at O’Reilly Radar

Presidential Debate and Fact-Check at NYTimes.com

Presidential Debates Commission Keeps Internet Bottled at TechPresident

Just how big is the mobile ad market going to be? at Econsultancy

Will Mobile’s Massive Growth Equal Real Revenues? at AdAge

The Explosion in Mobile Audiences and a Close Look at What It Means for News report from Pew Research Center

Mobile Rising Stars Ad Units at the IAB

MediaShift Poll

Don’t forget to vote in our poll, this time about your thoughts on mobile advertising:

Mark Glaser is executive editor of MediaShift and Idea Lab. He also writes the bi-weekly OPA Intelligence Report email newsletter for the Online Publishers Association. He lives in San Francisco with his son Julian and fiancee Renee. You can follow him on Twitter @mediatwit. and Circle him on Google+