It would be okay if it were accurate, it just isn’t: I don’t have time to explain the gymnastics math that serves as the basis of this Advertising Age story that claims, according to Merrill Lynch, the Internet will collect more more ad dollars than magazines this year. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t care if the Internet collects ten times the amount of ad dollars of magazines. Indeed, I hope it does and fully expect it to. However, to get to such numbers at this point, one must compare all Internet ad dollars to a limited segment (consumer) of magazines…which is misguided and inaccurate.
(I haven’t had the chance yet to see the Merrill Lynch research, but in 2004, I posted this (and wrote a similar piece for Folio:) after another similar apples-to-oranges comparison led to similar confusion. Again, I’m all for Internet advertising — maybe you’ve noticed, I like the whole online thing. But I also like context and accuracy.)
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