Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Illustration: Vox Media

Vox Media, the parent company to brands like The Verge, SB Nation, GrubStreet and more, is partnering with Google to create a local advertising network called "Concert Local."

By the numbers: While neither party would confirm the amount, it's understood that the investment is over $1 million.

  • The funding is coming through the Google News Initiative program and is one of the largest single-publisher investments that Google is making of this kind, according to a source familiar with the matter.

Why it matters: The marketplace will bring together ad inventory from many local news publishers, making it easier for big, national advertisers to target local news audiences.

  • In the past, big brands would mostly have to target local media consumers by buying ads from local news sites individually. Now, they can buy local audiences across one giant pool of collective ad inventory that Vox Media and Google are pulling together.
  • "What we have experienced is that brand budgets typically don't find their way to local media news sites on orders of the magnitude that are making a difference to local communities and newsrooms," says Jason Washing, Managing Director, News Partnerships at Google.

Details: Vox Media will work with global media agency Omnicom Media Group as a launch partner. the media group within Omnicom Group. This means they'll connect clients with Concert Local across their agencies of OMD, Hearts & Science, PHD and Resolution. 

  • Concert Local has brokered partnerships with a dozen publishers to-date, including Advance Local, Boston Globe, Chicago Sun-Times, CNHI, Dallas Morning News, Deseret News, Hearst Newspapers, Star Tribune, Tampa Bay Times, and Texas Monthly.
  • It will leverage Vox Media's existing footprint in local markets through websites that have hyper-local listings and journalism, like Eater, Curbed and SB Nation.
  • Pending partnerships will be announced in the near future.

Google isn't providing new technology, says Trei Brundrett, Chief Operating Officer at Vox Media. "We've had a longstanding partnership with them. Google Ads Manager has been the system of record that we've relied on for Concert since the very beginning and nothing changes about that."

  • Instead, Google will help connect Vox Media to local publishers that it has relationships with and will help Vox Media improve the quality of its ad network.
  • Vox Media will be developing new ad products, says Brundrett. Those products will take advantage of the local experience using things like maps and local data.
  • Currently, Vox Media uses a proprietary ad unit called Athena to personalize ads at the national level. It will leverage this ad unit at the local level as well.

Be smart: The new marketplace is an extension of Vox Media's existing national ad marketplace, called Concert, and its existing software licensing business.

  • Concert works with over 100 media companies to pool quality ad inventory for advertisers to target people against. Over 700 brands have used Concert.
  • Chorus, Vox Media's content management system software, is currently licensed to 8 publishers for them to build their websites.
  • Coral, a comments engagement platform that Vox Media acquired last year from the Mozilla Foundation, works with over 60+ newsrooms globally.
  • In total, Vox Media has 150+ publishers globally that are software clients.

The big picture: The idea is for Vox Media to develop an end-to-end technology stack for publishers at all levels to be able to license to create a better user experience and to make more money. Other publishers, like The Washington Post and Minute Media, are also leaning into software sales as a way of bolstering revenue and helping smaller publishers.

The bottom line: "I think we have a shared mission in terms of seeing the opportunity, value and importance of local journalism," says Brundrett. "Google has relationships with local partners and the resources to help us scale it."

Go deeper

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
31 mins ago - Technology

Facebook's scandals have been great for shareholders

Expand chart
Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios

Facebook has been embroiled in scandal for the past five years, and while the specific allegations change over time, a central theme is constant. Given the choice between commercial and moral imperatives, Facebook always seems to choose the option that is best for the share price.

Why it matters: Facebook's stock chart supports that narrative. Since the 2016 scandals alleging that the social network was infiltrated by foreign actors trying to influence the outcome of democratic elections, Facebook's revenues — and its stock — have been soaring.

Biden to tap telecom trio for NTIA, FCC posts

Jessica Rosenworcel. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

President Joe Biden on Tuesday is expected to name Alan Davidson as head of the telecom arm of the Commerce Department, Jessica Rosenworcel as chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission and Gigi Sohn as a commissioner at the FCC, according to a person familiar with the process.

Why it matters: Internet availability and affordability has been a key policy priority for the White House, but the administration lagged in tapping people for the agency posts that oversee the issues.

2 hours ago - Technology

Facebook seeks fountain of youth

Data: Piper Sandler Taking Stock With Teens Study; Chart: Axios Visuals

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday said that the company is pivoting its strategy to focus on young adults, following reports that teens have fled its apps.

Why it matters: A series of stories based on leaked whistleblower documents suggest the company sees the aging of its user base as an existential threat to its business.