One by one, the media outlets you know and love are falling prey to stealth marketing. Call the roll: The New York Times. The Wall Street Journal. NBC’s The Tonight Show. The Washington Post. And etc. (See here for all the details.)

And now Twitter has jumped in the pool. From MediaBistro’s All Twitter:


Twitter Launches ‘Native Ads’ On MoPub Platform



Twitter acquired ad platform MoPub way back in September of last year and, after a few months of almost no fanfare, has started to announce some new features which the company hopes will become a significant source of annual revenue.

Last week Twitter launched a mobile app promotion suite, and today MoPub have announced “native ads”, a new service that sells ads that blend directly into content on mobile devices.


The money quote:


The MoPub exchange reaches over one billion iOS and Android users, serving more than 130 billion ad requests each month, and MoPub believes the reach for its native advertising solution is “significantly larger”.


Laissez les bons tweets rouler, oui?

Not so much rolling, but roiling, is the rumpus over the brand names featured in New York’s statewide standardized English tests.

From the Associated Press:



NEW YORK (AP) — “Just Do It” has been a familiar Nike slogan for years, but some parents are wondering what it was doing on some of New York’s Common Core standardized English tests.

Brands including Barbie, iPod, Mug Root Beer and Life Savers showed up on the tests more than a million students in grades 3 through 8 took this month, leading to speculation it was some form of product placement advertising.

New York state education officials and the test publisher say the brand references were not paid product placement but just happened to be contained in previously published passages selected for the tests.

But some folks aren’t so sure. “It just seems so unnecessary,” Josh Golin, associate director of the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, told the AP. “It would be horrible if they were getting paid for it,” he added. “But even if they’re not, it’s taking something that should not be a commercial experience and commercializing it.”

The testing company and New York education officials say they’re not responsible for the presence of the brand names in the statewide tests.


Representatives of the New York State Education Department and Pearson, the education publishing giant with a $32 million five-year contract to develop New York’s tests, said the companies did not pay for the exposure.

“There are no product placement deals between us, Pearson or anyone else,” said Tom Dunn, an Education Department spokesman. “No deals. No money. We use authentic texts. If the author chose to use a brand name in the original, we don’t edit.”


Lots of back-and-forth ensues in the AP report.

Your back-and-forth goes here.


John R. Carroll is media analyst for NPR's Here & Now and senior news analyst for WBUR in Boston. He also writes at Campaign Outsider and It's Good to Live in a Two-Daily Town.
John R. Carroll has 305 post(s) on Sneak Adtack