top of page

Digital Digest – 25 June

Rodion Kutsaev on Unsplash

In this week’s Digital Digest we look closer to home at the British Heart Foundation’s response to Christian Eriksens heart attack, Facebook’s attempts to overturn the Government’s junk food ban and the launch of 5Rights ‘Twisted Toys’ campaign.

We then focus on big tech as a global coalition of privacy advocates calls for a ban on surveillance-based advertising, EU antitrust inquiry into Google and a Global Witness report into Facebook’s failure to remove Myanmar military propaganda from its platform.


British Heart Foundation reunites with celebrity Ambassador Vinnie Jones

Vinnie Jones reunited with the British Heart Foundation to call on the UK to “help save lives by learning CPR”. The campaign is a direct response to Danish Striker Christian Eriksen, who collapsed on pitch after suffering a cardiac arrest, during a European Championship game against Finland.

The ad, which is a 40 second message, aired during Thursday’s pre-match coverage of the Denmark vs Belgium game on ITV. Created by Saatchi & Saatchi, British Heart Foundation’s newly appointed advertising partner, the film delivers a simple and hard-hitting message – learning CPR helps save lives.

Facebook lobbies government in an attempt to reverse junk food advertising ban

Facebook has urged UK Government ministers to reverse a ban on junk food advertising over fears it will scupper the social media accounts of thousands of small businesses. The Silicon Valley giant has warned that a total online ban would inflict financial pain on bakeries, coffee shops and restaurants by stopping ads on their social media channels.

Facebook could face the sharp end of the ban, with Deutsche Bank analysts estimating that small firms account for around three-quarters of its $70bn (£51bn) annual ad revenues.

About one in three British children leave primary school overweight or obese, fuelling fears that Britian is facing an “obesity time bomb”.

A children’s rights group has created a range of mock toys that highlight the abuse children face online.

Campaign group 5Rights launched Twisted Toys to highlight how abuse that happens online would not be tolerated offline.

5Rights Launch Twisted Toys campaign to highlights dangers for children in the digital world

New research from 5Rights found that 80 per cent of parents do not trust tech companies to protect children online. To raise awareness among parents of the dangers children face while online, 5rights have launched a range of mock toys as part of its ‘Twisted Toys’ campaign.

The Twisted Toys campaign is producing short, satirical video ads and made-up toys to highlight the dangers. The toys include a “Share Bear” that collects and shares a child’s data and a “Pocket Troll” that scrutinises their activity and bombards them with horrible comments.

Earlier this year, the government proposed the Online Safety Bill, which will introduce a new duty of care for social media platforms and put them under the scrutiny of Ofcom in its new role as an online regulator. However, 5Rights believes the bill doesn’t go far enough.


International coalition united in call for ban on ‘surveillance advertising’

An international coalition of consumer protection, digital and civil rights organizations and data protection experts – including groups like Privacy International, the Open Rights Group, the Center for Digital Democracy, the New Economics Foundation, Beuc, Edri and Fairplay – has added its voice to growing calls for a ban on what’s been billed as “surveillance-based advertising”.

In an open letter to EU and US policy makers, the coalition suggests the DSA as the ideal legislative vehicle to contain a ban on surveillance-based ads. The open letter points to a report from the NCC’s which found that only one in ten people are positive about commercial actors collecting information about them online.

The letter is just the latest salvo against ‘toxic adtech’. And advertising giants like Facebook and Google have — for several years now — seen the pro-privacy writing on the wall. To some extent, their future market dominance will depend on developing advertising models which don’t depend on the systematic surveillance of consumers to function.

Google in EU crosshairs again with advertising antitrust inquiry

EU regulators open another antitrust investigation into Google’s digital advertising business, which they fear gives it an unfair advantage over rivals and advertisers. “We are concerned that Google has made it harder for rival online advertising services to compete in the so-called ad tech stack,” European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.

A new EU inquiry could end up targeting all of Google’s ad empire. According to market researcher eMarketer, Google could control 27% of global online ad spending this year, including 57% for search ads and 10% of display.

Google and Facebook together account for most of the global internet-ad sales market but the practices of both are now under increased scrutiny from regulators around the world. The extent to which their market dominance continues is now up for debate.

Facebook promoting Myanmar military propaganda despite promising action two years ago

Facebook is under fire after an investigation by Global Witness found the platform was promoting content that incites violence against Myanmar’s coup protesters and amplifies junta misinformation, despite promising to clamp down on the misuse of its platform, according to a study.

Content that supported the arrests of civilians by the military and security forces in Myanmar should be removed under existing Facebook policies. The social media company previously acknowledged that its platform has been misused in Myanmar, where it is hugely popular and influential.

In 2018, following the massacre of Rohingya Muslims by the military, Facebook admitted that its platform had been used to “foment division and incite offline violence”.


  1. Google launches its first permanent retail space which will feature sleek demo spaces and an event hub. See here.

  2. T-Mobile quietly enters the ad-tech space, appointing veteran Mike Peralta as VP of Marketing Solutions. See here.

  3. American Express provides on- and off-site Wimbledon experiences and it launches a virtual-reality tennis game reimagined as an augmented-reality experience. See here.

  4. Chloe Ferry, Chloe Khan, Jodie Marsh and Lucy Mecklenburgh are the first social media influencers to be publicly named by the ASA for repeatedly breaking advertising rules on social media. See here.

  5. Worldwide regulatory crackdowns on cryptocurrencies have wiped out almost all of Bitcoins gain for the year, sinking below $30,000 for the first time since January. See here.

  6. The draft Online Safety Bill has been slammed by campaigners for giving the tech giants too much power in policing the internet. See here.


  1. Sound may be an undervalued medium but that’s changing rapidly, according to a new panel discussion with The Drum and podcasting platform Acast. See here.

  2. The five trends likely to determine the future of big data technologies. See here.

  3. Facebook’s VR ad setback shows the importance of putting customer experience first. See here.


* indicates required

Email Address *

First Name

Last Name

Job Title




Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page