Answer #2 to Homework Assignment Week 2, PDV-91: Collect a signal, prepare & present


In the domain of advertising technology (adtech) in an daround media merchandising, advertising marketplaces, media delivery and audience measurement. In and among the platforms: SSP, DSP, EX.


As a story-line whereas in 2027 …

  • All data in and around “adtech” and “martech” is available on a blockchain system (side chain, state channel, etc.) somewhere.
  • Some of it is transparent, some of it is not, depending upon the commercial needs. This is implemented at the blockchain level. And yet, there is CALEA-type “LE Intercept” built in at all levels in the system, so nothing is really secret, just hidden.
  • Blockchain for persistent irrevocable
    • Consumer identity and profiles (data about a person)
      like TV Everywhere but more so.
    • Supply quality & availability (who publishes what; generalized Deal ID)
    • Demand availability (advertisers).
  • The “main chain” is used for slowly-changing dimensions: property records, incorporations, major collaboration deals
  • The side channels (state channels) are used to record individual trades.

In archaeological order…

Analysis Framework


See Evolution of the Web (animated)

There is some generalized unhappiness with how things are in the adtech industry.  The changes are in and around the 3-5 year echo of the adtech investment boom of 2013-2016 (being that the funding rounds from that era are now petering out).  c.f. LUMA Partners LUMAscape presentations.

Also, whereas The Blockchain is magic pixie dust, there will be lots of experimentation to determinie if it can be reliably used for anything at all beyond money laundering, drug trading and speculation.

There are  legitimate use cases where a slow global ledger would be warranted.  These areas are already being addressed by industry trade groups with data sharing activities; e.g. Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG).
Always and ever thus.
Because of techno-determinism, the Inevitibility concept; because it can be done with the technology at hand in 2017, it will be done..
  • The technology might tnot work; there is so much hype nowadays that few are listening to the prudence signals.
    • Blockchain is indicated only when a “general public ledger” between semi-adversarial commercial traders is in place.  It is not clear that adtech matches this use model.  There are significant use cases in media trading where secrecy is warranted.  The markets are in fact opaque for a commercial reason.
    • Blockchain does not scale.  Ad trading, as an industry, runs 1T (one trillion) trades per month nowadays, at a micropayment level “a ten thousanth of a cent”  The systems that are built to support this are SOX-compliant and run live money.  they are global and warehouse scale.
    • The online entertainment industry is always one software release away from obviating much of the commercial and technical architecture.  c.f.  Apple ad blocking (in Safari), Google ad blocking (in Chrome); Mozilla ad blocking (Firefox).
  • Data regulation construal and response (e.g. GDPR) is unknown.
  • Convergence of broadcast linear Television and OTT; the “go video” apps (go99, Fox Sports Go, etc.) would modify the marketplace structures back to the “Walled Gardens” scenario where free & open trading of consumer attention was not possible; consumers would be “captured” by the verticals media companies.



  • Skill 4 (collect): references (above)/.
  • Skill 5 (forecast)
  • Skill 6 (positive Imagination)
  • Skill 7 (shadow Imagination)


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