A long long time ago in a land far far away

A newspaper publisher in a small island called Great Britain decided that it would charge any caller to its office for the pleasure of that call. They did this by using premium rate telephone lines better known for carrying conversations including “I’m so hot for you big boy.”

The publisher was roundly ridiculed by the media buying community who (quelle surprise) found it somewhat peculiar that buying ad space carried a per minute charge.

Fast forward to today. A well known company based in Mountain View, California encourages its customers to use an API to upload campaigns into its systems. This is just as well as the company also encourages its customers to bid for many many thousands of keywords and this would be challenging using a spreadsheet. The purpose of the API is to allow the seller to receive orders from its customers.

Surprisingly, therefore, they charge their customers for this (Macy’s does not charge admission as far as I know) and that charge increases as the volume of keywords increases.

If, say, a single player in a market with 10% market share did this it’s just possible that its customers might say that the would not accept the charge. If on the other hand its share was, say, 70% they might not have a choice.

In my opinion, and it’s only me, charging for this API is an unacceptable practice and the party involved should just make it go away without fuss.

1 Comment

Filed under The world we work in

One response to “A long long time ago in a land far far away

  1. This practice is best defined as: Chutzpah.
    There was a time when the CEO of a certain Detroit-based mega-corporation thought that what was best for his company was equally good for the USA. It took a while, but we all discovered that this too was untrue.

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