I love Google. I believe it to be one of the greatest American businesses ever launched. For the last dozen years, I have been a partner as well as competitor to Google. I have seen firsthand the incredible breadth of engineering talent and resources they bring to the market. As a publisher, I was a long-time customer of syndicated Google search advertising as well as embedded, contextual text advertising.Google is brilliant at serving and monetizing text advertising. Whether done on the search result page or via contextual mapping to page level content into a dedicated module, these are solutions that no publisher can directly offer. These are solutions based on mapping scale of advertisers to scale of potential keywords, something no individual publisher can possibly replicate. The money generated from these placements is incremental and does not compete with the publishers’ own direct efforts to sell a similar product.Display is a different ballgame. A premium publisher’s core business is in selling a high-value display placement into their curated environment at a premium price. While programmatic buying is surely challenging the value of this model, it still represents a significant market with hundreds of top-tier brand marketers placing value on the age-old premise of the right ad delivered to the right individual in the right environment. Google’s core display product undercuts this model in damaging ways. Google will serve what its algorithm perceives to be the best possible ad at that given moment. It does not discern the appropriateness of the ad content itself or the economics involved. This often defaults to the lowest common denominator served into a premium display position—a text ad, from a direct response marketer, sold for less than 10 percent of what the publishers’ direct sales force is trying (and succeeding ) to get for that same inventory.This is particularly damaging in emerging areas like mobile. Because most premium publishers don’t sell their mobile inventory yet, you often see Google text ads appearing in prime display mobile real estate. Because many of these publishers are using DFP as their first party ad server, Google wisely makes it very easy for them to automate their Adsense backfill.Here is the prime example. This is a screen shot of The New York Times mobile home page from a few months back. The NYT has not sold this position so it defaults to a backfill solution from Google. This is what served: Now I’m an old digital guy and still view the home page of the NYT as a very premium buy. I see top 50 brands paying top dollar to get that position. Google has done a great service to the Counseling Anxiety in Miami advertiser. I wonder if they even know they owned the homepage of the NYT. For the NYT, this is a horrible result. Never mind the poor quality of the ad content and how that sullies the environment for the reader; I’m not sure how their sales team can go to market selling the exclusivity of the placement to their top-brand advertising partners when this is what’s running there.So what can you do if you’re a premium publisher with lots of unsold inventory?1. Put the right resources in place to sell it yourself, and in the way it needs to be sold—as a high-value, high-impact display unit.2. Work with specialist networks that focus on premium inventory and premium brands.3. If you’re going to backfill, do it via an SSP (Pubmatic, Rubicon, or even AdMeld, which Google owns), where more competition for the inventory should produce better ads and better economics.4. If you’re going to just run Google ads, then have somebody at the switch watching to make sure there are minimum standards of ad content quality and yield.Don’t get me wrong; Google is a great and critical partner to the publisher and would be the first to point out they give the publisher control to manage their inventory. The reality is that most publishers don’t have the resources to do this, so they default to something that in the long run undermines their business. Be smart. Protect the premium value of your brand and inventory.
Angela Lang/CNET I thought this might be a mistake, but, no, the weirdly named HP Laptop 15t Value is indeed quite the value at this price. Specs include an Intel Core i7 processor, 12GB of RAM, a 256GB solid-state drive and a 15.6-inch display. However, I strongly recommend paying an extra $50 to upgrade that display to FHD (1,920×1,080), because you’re not likely to be happy with the native 1,366×768 resolution. Tags $999 Turo: Save $30 on any car rental Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. Turo Read the Rylo camera preview Spotify and most other streaming services rely on compressed audio, which robs the listener of full fidelity. Enter Tidal, the only “major” service that delivers lossless audio — meaning at least on par with CD quality, if not better. Want to see (er, hear) the difference for yourself? Grab this excellent extended trial while you can. It’s just $6 for three months, and it’s good for up to six listeners. $59 at eBay $999 Use promo code 19LABOR10 to get an unusually good deal on JBL’s interesting hybrid product — not quite headphones, and not quite a traditional speaker, but something you wear like neckphones to listen to music on the go. Best Buy Sarah Tew/CNET See at Amazon Free Echo Dot with an Insignia or Toshiba TV (save $50) 1 Comments Read DJI Osmo Action preview Comment Read Lenovo Smart Clock review Bruce Wayne makes his way to #DCUTITANS. Welcome Iain Glen to the @TheDCUniverse. https://t.co/e5Exq7NUnF pic.twitter.com/0xvcX61CFG— DCUTitans (@DCUTitans) April 11, 2019 DJI’s answer to GoPro’s action cameras is rugged little model that’s shockproof, dustproof and waterproof down to 11 meters. It normally runs $350, but this deal drops it to $261 when you apply promo code 19LABOR10 at checkout. Sarah Tew/CNET $261 at Daily Steals via Google Express DJI Osmo Action camera: $261 (save $89) $60 at Best Buy 7 Read Google Home Hub review Game of Thrones stars, from season 1 through today Google Nest Hub: $59 (save $70) Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $155 (save $45) Share your voice $999 Mentioned Above Apple iPhone XS (64GB, space gray) Though not technically a Labor Day sale, it’s happening during Labor Day sale season — and it’s too good not to share. Nationwide Distributors, via Google Express, has just about the best AirPods deal we’ve seen (when you apply promo code ZBEDWZ at checkout). This is for the second-gen AirPods with the wireless charging case. Can’t imagine these will last long at this price, so if you’re interested, act fast. The problem with most entry-level laptops: They come with mechanical hard drives. That makes for a mighty slow Windows experience. This Lenovo model features a 128GB solid-state drive, so it should be pretty quick to boot and load software, even with its basic processor. Plus, it has a DVD-burner! That’s not something you see in many modern laptops, especially at this price. $210 at Best Buy See It Rylo According to Deadline, it’s not clear if he’ll be wearing the bat suit at any point. In a statement, the show’s executive producers describe Bruce Wayne like this: “After decades of fighting crime as Batman, billionaire Bruce Wayne is just as driven to protect Gotham from evil as he was in his prime. Needing to reconcile his relationship with Dick Grayson, the duo hope to forge a new dynamic as Bruce tries to help his former sidekick and the Titans achieve success.”Originally published 11:48 a.m. PT. Update, 12:46 p.m. PT: Adds statement from executive producers. Apple iPhone XS Sarah Tew/CNET An Echo Dot makes a fine match for any Fire edition TV, because you can use the latter to say things like, “Alexa, turn on the TV.” Right now, the 24-inch Insignia Fire TV Edition starts at just $100, while the 32-inch Toshiba Fire TV Editions is on sale for $130. Just add any Fire TV Edition to your cart, then add a third-gen Echo Dot, and presto: The latter is free. Read the AirPods review What’s cooler: A snapshot of a firework exploding in front of you, or full 360-degree video of all the fireworks and all the reactions to seeing them? Oooh, ahhh, indeed. At $250, the compact Rylo dual-lens camera is selling for its lowest price yet. And for an extra $50, you can get the bundle that includes the waterproof housing.This deal runs through Sept. 3; it usually costs $500. $90 at Daily Steals via Google Express TV and Movies,I’m shocked — shocked! — to learn that stores are turning Labor Day into an excuse to sell stuff. Wait — no, I’m not. As much as I respect the original intent of the holiday (which became official back in 1894), to most of us, it’s just a bonus day off — one that’s blissfully tacked onto a weekend. So, yeah, stores; go ahead, run your sales. I’m listening. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Labor Day doesn’t bring out bargains to compete with the likes of Black Friday (which will be here before you know it), but there are definitely some sales worth your time.For example:We’ve rounded up the best Labor Day mattress deals.We’ve also gathered the best Labor Day laptop deals at Best Buy.The 2019 Vizio P Series Quantum is back under $999.Be sure to check out Amazon’s roughly three dozen Labor Day deals on TVs and audio. Google Express is having a big sale as well, one that includes deals on game consoles, AirPods, iPhones, laptops and more.Below I’ve rounded up a handful of individual items I consider to be the cream of the crop, followed by a handy reference guide to other Labor Day sales. Keep in mind, of course, that products may sell out at any time, even if the sale itself is still running. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. Share your voice See It $299 at Amazon $520 at HP Amazon Formerly known as the Google Home Hub, Google’s Nest Hub packs a wealth of Google Assistant goodness into a 7-inch screen. At $59, this is within a buck of the best price we’ve seen. It lists for $129 and sells elsewhere in the $89-to-$99 range.This is one item of many available as part of eBay’s Labor Day Sale (which, at this writing, doesn’t specifically mention Labor Day, but that’s how it was pitched to us). Turo is kind of like Uber meets Airbnb: You borrow someone’s car, but you do all the driving. I’ve used it many times and found it a great alternative to traditional car-rental services — in part because you get to choose exactly the vehicle you want (not just, say, “midsize”) and in part because you can often do pickup and dropoff right outside baggage claim.Between now and Sept. 1, the first 300 people to check out can get $30 off any Turo rental with promo code LDW30. See at Turo Other Labor Day sales you should check out Best Buy: In addition to some pretty solid MacBook deals that have been running for about a week already, Best Buy is offering up to 40% off major appliances like washers, dryers and stoves. There are also gift cards available with the purchase of select appliances. See it at Best BuyDell: Through Aug. 28, Dell is offering an extra 12% off various laptops, desktops and electronics. And check back starting Aug. 29 for a big batch of Labor Day doorbusters. See it at DellGlassesUSA: Aug. 29 – Sept. 3 only, you can save 65% on all frames with promo code labor65. See it at GlassesUSALenovo: The tech company is offering a large assortment of deals and doorbusters through Labor Day, with the promise of up to 56% off certain items — including, at this writing, the IdeaPad 730S laptop for $700 (save $300).See it at LenovoLensabl: Want to keep the frames you already love and paid for? Lensabl lets you mail them in for new lenses, based on your prescription. From now through Sept. 2 only, you can save 20% on the blue light-blocking lens option with promo code BLOCKBLUE. See it at LensablSears: Between now and Sept. 7, you can save up to 40% on appliances (plus an additional 10% if you shop online), up to 60% on mattresses, up to 50% on Craftsman products and more. The store is also offering some fairly hefty cashback bonuses. See it at SearsNote: This post was published previously and is continuously updated with new information.CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page, and find more great buys on the CNET Deals page. See It Iain Glen will play Bruce Wayne. Jeff Kravitz/Getty Bruce Wayne is getting yet another incarnation. Actor Iain Glen will take on the role of the wealthy Wayne on DC Universe’s Titans, the show announced Thursday. The show follows young DC heroes as they come of age in a gritty take on the classic Teen Titans franchise. You might recognize Glen from his turn as Jorah Mormont from Game of Thrones, where he plays a knight who pledged his loyalty to Daenerys Targaryen. Recently updated to include digital-photo-frame capabilities, the Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant goodness to your nightstand. It’s a little smaller than the Amazon Echo Show 5, but also a full $30 less (and tied with Prime Day pricing) during this Best Buy Labor Day sale. The Cheapskate Rylo 5.8K 360 Video Camera: $250 (save $250) Chris Monroe/CNET See it Review • iPhone XS review, updated: A few luxury upgrades over the XR Tidal 3-month family subscription: $5.99 (save $54) Tags Boost Mobile CNET may get a commission from retail offers. 57 Photos Sarah Tew/CNET Preview • iPhone XS is the new $1,000 iPhone X Lenovo Smart Clock: $59.99 (save $20) Sprint Lenovo 130-15AST 15.6-inch laptop: $210 (save $90) $155 at Google Express TVs Speakers Mobile Accessories Cameras Laptops Automobiles Smart Speakers & Displays $999 JBL Soundgear wearable speaker: $90 (save $160) $6 at Tidal HP Laptop 15t Value: $520 (save $780)
Kannur floodTwitterThe Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a red alert in Kerala due to the heavy downpour that has created a flood-like situation in the several districts.The red alert has been issued for Kasargod district and orange alert has been issued for Kannur, Kozhikode, Idukki, Malappuram and Wayanad districts. IMD has also issued a yellow alert for Thiruvananthapuram, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Pathanamthitta, Kollam, Alappuzha, Thrissur and Palakkad.The heavy rains have lashed several parts of the state and many different parts of Kannur is still flooded. Three people have been reported to be dead from Kannur, Pathanamthitta and Kollam districts and several people are also missing from various districts due to the rain. Many rescue camps have been opened at the areas affected by the rain.Several fishermen have also gone missing after they set out from Vizhinjam and Shaktikulnagara in Kollam and the coastal police are trying to locate them. Helicopters have also been deployed to trace the missing fishermen. The locals have protested against the police claiming that no actions were taken by the authorities over the missing fishermen.In the wake of heavy downpour in the catchment area, the government has opened one shutter of Kallarkutty Dam in Idukki district as the water level has reached 2307.12 ft due to the south-west monsoon which continues to intensify. The IMD has predicted over 20 cm of rainfall between July 19-22 in the state. Kannur floodTwitterTwo shutters of the Malankara dam was opened on Friday and more shutters are also expected to open due to the high intensity of the rain. Other dams including Aruvikara, Pambla (lower Periyar), Boodhathankettu have also opened their shutters.
California Attorney General Kamala Harris (Twitter Photo)WASHINGTON – Kamala Harris, the California attorney general and the early odds-on favorite to become the state’s first Black U.S. senator, returned to her Howard University roots during homecoming week to raise money and reconnect with her sorority members, longtime friends and supporters.Harris, who political experts say is the frontrunner in the race to replace retiring Sen. Barbara Boxer, hosted a few private events and fundraisers last week to further solidify her network of supporters.“I came to reconnect with friends and supporters and hear their concerns,” she said.Howard, she said, has been a special place in her career and her life. “Howard is really a place that teaches us who we can be, and most importantly teaches us we can be anybody,” she said.The attorney general said it was important to meet with her fellow members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s Alpha Chapter, which was founded in 1908 at Howard University.“My sorors support me spiritually and professionally,” Harris said. “That’s the great thing about a sisterhood.”Harris’ time at Howard was spent studying economics and political science, arguing on the debate team and working with Howard University Student Association (HUSA).It was at Howard where she won her first election, becoming the freshman class representative the College of Arts and Sciences. The experience molded her political career and sense of duty towards people who need their voices to be heard, she said.“I was working with HUSA in our tiny office creating priorities around folks that needed a voice,” she said.After graduating from Howard in 1986, Harris returned to her hometown in the San Francisco Bay area and earned a degree from University of California Hastings College of the Law. Harris was deputy district attorney of Alameda County and district attorney of San Francisco before receiving the Democratic nomination for California attorney general in 2010.One of Harris’ main priorities has been to reduce recidivism among California inmates. According to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation 2013 Report, 61 percent of California inmates find themselves back in institutions within three years of release. Harris, California’s first Black woman attorney general, said as she talked with friends and others during homecoming week, they were focused on, “criminal justice reform, early education, minimum wage, the environment and immigration.”Harris said she hopes to influence young women to be persistent and determined in chasing their own success.“I always want to encourage young girls to never listen to or hear the word ‘no’,” Harris said, “I eat that word for breakfast. I hear ‘no’ maybe on the fifth time.”