Google attacked for creating ‘walled gardens’ in TubeMogul campaign

Public ad tech company TubeMogul has unveiled a campaign attacking Google for hiding “walled gardens” from its advertisers.

There has been no love lost between the two since TubeMogul - amongst other third-party companies - was cut off from from buying YouTube ads via DoubleClick Ad Exchange and told to instead go through its sales tea or Google's own self-serve ad tech platform.

TubeMogul protested at the time (August 2015) but this campaign appears to go further. Aimed at those working in the advertising industry, the so-called ‘Independence Matters’ drive will see the release of a number of videos, posters and print ads criticising Google with allegations around its “misaligned business incentives” and “conflicts of interest”.

The press ads will take up space in several specially-selected trade titles, while the OOH offerings will be placed in several locations around New York and San Francisco near the offices of top creative shops.

TubeMogul: 'Independence Matters'

TubeMogul Google campaign
TubeMogul Google campaign
TubeMogul Google campaign
TubeMogul Google campaign
TubeMogul Google campaign
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The video ads pastiche Google’s Voice Search feature, with a voiceover asking questions like “what’s a walled garden” and “show results for advertising conflict of interest,” which are met with evasive, wrong or blank responses from the search engine to highlight the fact TubeMogul believes independent vendors “best serve brand advertisers and break down barriers.”

TubeMogul claims that “Google has made a conscious decision to wall itself off from the rest of the industry,” meaning that advertisers centralising buys within the internet giant’s boundaries risk losing access to “some of the most exciting advertising opportunities out there.”

In a press release TubeMogul further argued its reasoning for the campaign, accusing Google turning to an “antiquated practice to secure their financial future and position of influence” by building walls.

“Unlike the stone and mortar walls of past empires, Google’s regime is protected by implementing procedures and software that strictly control the data they let into their platform, and more importantly, the data they let out,” it continued.

The Drum reached out to Google for comment on the campaign, but at the time of print the company had failed to issue a response.

The films direct viewers to a page on the company’s website titled ‘A Manifesto For Independence’.