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Xbox Live and Skype may soon host targeted political ads

Microsoft have been working on a new plan to bring political ads to your Xbox Live dashboard in the near future. The news comes courtesy a report by the Washington Post and they claim that “Microsoft is trying to persuade politicians to take out targeted ads on Xbox Live, Skype, MSN and other company platforms as midterm elections begin heating up around the country.

In what can only be described as an ingenious move, it joins a long list of sudden advancements by tech companies to tap into the lucrative market of online advertising. With their suite of services including Skype and MSN, the ads stand to reach tens of millions of users across a variety of devices, social circles and age groups. The project is reportedly being set up in such a way that ads can be targeted to specific demographical areas or districts. After all, you would want to send your ads to a specific set of people, and not just spend your money so that you could ‘preach to the choir.’

Microsoft’s data is lucrative as it is able to generate sensitive data including race, sex, age, type of residence and income level. Supplying this data raises some questions about how much snooping around Microsoft does with their users, and the company has elected to remain silent on said issues. With an ever increasing desire by politicians to target the citizens, Microsoft may have craftily stumbled upon somewhat of a goldmine although it’s not the first time that Microsoft has engaged in political advertising. In 2012, President Obama used the Xbox Live platform to full effect for his advertising, much to the dismay of the platform’s users.

With Instagram signing a $100m deal recently, and Google and Yandex getting cozy with each other, the race to increase one’s marketshare in the internet advertising space is getting very exciting. Companies are always trying to predict the next big trend, and many purchases are being made, but make no mistake, Google still remains king of the advertising space.

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Editor’s Note: It’s yet another example of Microsoft’s bogus attack on competitors. While the company runs Scroogled campaign to attack Google for it’s advertising, the company does almost everything that it accuses Google of doing. The biggest difference between Google and Microsoft is that Google offers it’s services for free of cost in return of advertising, whereas Microsoft charges heavily for it’s product and then on top of that exploits the same paying users for advertisement. So, Microsoft you are actually the one who is scoogling the users.

Myril Kennedy

I am a fan of technology and Android in particular. It has helped to turn the mobile industry on its head, and its open source nature has opened many doors that were previously closed. I am also a self confessed Google fanboy, so it may be reflected in my views from time to time.

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