Pandora Radio has decided that it's high time to cash in on political advertising. Once the cash cow of local TV and radio stations, political ads are now coming to a Pandora Radio app near you (geo-strategically speaking). Imagine using Pandora Radio for iPad and finding Herman Cain talking "Nine, Nine, Nine" or that President Obama is telling us “But we’ve been a little bit lazy, I think, over the last couple of decades.” Or better yet, you could get swift-boated and railroaded by special interest groups and lobbying groups as attack ads attack your Pandora listening time. These are all the kinds of people who can buy political ads on Pandora, people they're calling "campaign strategists."
The press release reads "political campaign strategists have the option to target voters by state, county and congressional districts, as well as metropolitan survey areas (MSA), and designated market areas (DMA). The new targeting capabilities provide campaign strategists a contemporary and more personal way to reach voters during the 2012 election season."
This runs contrary to what happened to Pandora earlier this year, when Security firm Veracode accused Pandora of secretly sharing user information (age, location and gender) with digital advertising firms. As a result, Pandora said it would remove third-party ad platforms. It appears that now Pandora is more than happy to share relevant data to help "campaign strategists" target Nascar Dads and Soccer Moms alongside Volvo Democrats and Mama Grizzlies. This could mean that they're using your preferences in listening habits to determine a likely voting scenario, a practice that's been in use for years with cash machine usage and online web browsing hisories.
The Pandora Radio app is hugely popular, as it's been around for years and is in cars as well as used on computers, mobile phones and home stereo systems. The potential reach is huge, and as we've heard before, Pandora has a thin level of profitability, so this could help them out as well as be good for peeps with Pandora Radio stock.
What do you think? Are you outraged? Could you care less?
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