Tech Spokesman Says Publishers Keep 70% of Digital Ad Revenue — Which Doesn’t Seem to Reflect Anyone’s Actual Experience

During last week’s hearing, a bold assertion was made by Matthew Schruers of the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA), a representative of the major tech platforms, who stated that news publishers make a 70 percent and higher share of digital ad revenue delivered through tech platforms.

That would certainly come as a surprise to news publishers! The assertion isn’t supported by studies by The Guardian, the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission, the French Competition Authority, or the UK House of Lords. And even the cited — and admittedly idealized and optimistic — Cairncross Review doesn’t get there (see pages 60-61).

The Syracuse (New York) Post-Standard noted in a recent editorial that they and fellow publishers often see nowhere close to the CCIA-cited 70 percent share.

Mr. Schruers is just doing his job. But it should be obvious to everyone that, as currently structured, the digital ad marketplace doesn’t work for news publishing and doesn’t support quality journalism. Pretending that it is somehow actually a boon for publishing not only isn’t credible, but is really just another way of not talking about the real problems.

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