Morning Update: Facebook introduces emojis; Playmobil’s ‘racist’ slave toy; Ex-employees sue Guvera; Barbie ad targets millenial parents

facebook emojis

AdWeek: Why Marketers Say Facebook’s New Emoji Reaction Buttons Are ‘Long Overdue’

Facebook today revealed a test in Ireland and Spain involving six emoji-based buttons that give users the option to express sentiments other than “like.” The new possibilities—which appear alongside the “like” button—include “love,” “haha,” “yay,” “wow,” “sad” and “angry.”

So far, the business world appears to be in favor of the sentiment buttons, which Facebook calls Reactions. Six of the seven marketers Adweek spoke with were decidedly eager to see the buttons rolled out to the social site’s U.S. audience.

“They’ll provide greater feedback,” said J.R. Rigley, president and CMO at packaged-goods company J.R. Watkins. “We will know more about how viewers feel about the brand, which could be helpful to us. The con is that they might not like the content. But some of that could be good, too.”

AdAge: Barbie Targets Millennial Parents With New Digital Effort

Mattel knows Barbie has the hearts and minds of many little girls around the world. Now the company has set a new target. It’s out to win over moms, and while they’re at it, dads too.

The company has created a new video aimed directly at parents with the tagline “You Can Be Anything.” BBDO San Francisco handled the campaign. Using hidden cameras, the video shows little girls pretending to be professionals in real-life settings. They take on the role of college professor, soccer coach, veterinarian, businesswoman and museum guide, while the adults around them play along.

Music World: Former Blinkbox employees sue Guvera for £10m

Around 100 former employees of defunct music streaming service Blinkbox, formerly owned by Tesco, have issued a class action lawsuit in the UK Employment Tribunal for an estimated £10 million against Guvera Ltd and two of its UK-based subsidiaries.

The lawsuit seeks damages following the dismissal of the entire workforce shortly after this acquisition.

Under the ownership of Tesco, the Blinkbox brand comprised both video-on-demand and online music streaming. The video-on-demand business was sold to Talk Talk.

Digiday: The U.K.’s IAB: “Banners don’t work”   

The U.K.’s Internet Advertising Bureau is owning up to what a lot of people have known for some time: Banner ads don’t work.

“Banners have to be served 1,250 times before someone clicks on one,” Clare O’Brien, senior industry programs manager at the IAB, said during a panel at the Digiday WTF Native event in London Oct. 8. “Old banner ads aren’t working anymore.”

It’s a significant about-face for an organization that’s been peddling the effectiveness of banner ads for years.

plAymobil toy

The Guardian: Playmobil says ‘racist’ toy is meant to be a pirate who is a former slave

The Playmobil toy company has claimed a dark-skinned figure wearing a neck shackle was meant to “represent a pirate who was a former slave in a historical context” after a mother complained that it was racist.

Ida Lockett of Sacramento, California, was horrified when she saw the instructions to her five-year-old son’s Playmobil pirate ship, which she said showed a slave with a neckpiece that looked similar to a slave collar.

The character, appearing to be dark-skinned, with black hair, no shoes and tattered pants, came with instructions to put a grey choker-like piece around its neck.

Techcrunch: Amazon Launches AWS IoT — A Platform For Building, Managing And Analyzing The Internet Of Things

Make way for another big player entering the Internet of Things space. Amazon today is announcing its long-awaited IoT platform for AWS at its re:Invent developer conference in Las Vegas.

As Amazon describes it, it is a managed cloud platform “that lets connected devices easily and securely interact with cloud applications and other devices.” The platform, which is launching in beta, will be able to support billions of devices and trillions of messages, “and can process and route those messages to AWS endpoints and to other devices reliably and securely.”



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