By now, members of SeekingAlpha are wondering what all the fuss being made about Looksmart is, I would imagine? (I certainly hope so)
I believe that it's about the Looksmart 'uniqueness' of it's "independent" AdCenter management platform (& an award winner), that will provide an "inter-operability" (or, allow Exchanges to inter-connect under RTB - real time bidding, auction based conditions), and on a "equal to all" basis to all. (Certainly in a global secondary, RTB marketplace)
Read the important post "Tim Cadogen Makes Case For Interoperability Between Ad Exchanges ..." - in the linked AdExchanger.com article, here:
< Yahoo's McGrory touched a bit on how Yahoo! manages the different constituencies that are served by his company's businesses. He said, for example, Yahoo! keeps RMX [Yahoo's Right Media Exchange] as an entirely separate business from Yahoo!'s ad network efforts as decisions need to be made from an an IO [information Operations] perspective and separate from the mission of the agnostic exchange. - - McGrory then reached out to a fellow panelist and asked him to distinguish between their technology and ad network business. Collective's CEO Joe Apprendi responded saying they must create a chinese wall between the technology platform and ad network businesses.> - (Ho-hum)
Looking At Data, Transparency And Privacy At IAB Networks And Exchanges Marketplace
Now, as Yahoo! have a need to do so (be totally transparent) I'm betting that it's the role of Looksmart's AdCenter (under a white-labeled or, in the private labeling of Looksmart's AdCenter platform and API on, to all players involved), that will provide such transparency or, a 'level playing field', to all.
Empowering publishers and advertising networks to "interconnect" with each other, the LookSmart AdCenter Marketplace significantly increases the volume of participants in advertising auctions and increases the overall revenue potential for publishers.>
Looksmart then get (I believe) a "nano-payment" on each querry or, impression being passed through it's AdCenter (black-box) auction marketplace, but with (say), around 20 - 30 billion a day (besides paid clicks also recorded, and API technology - licence rental), it mounts up to very healthy management revenues for Looksmart.
Looksmart then only manages and invoices between the big Exchanges and to Agencies (or, DSPs, who are also coming into the AdCenter/Exchange auction marketplace via an API 'inter-connector'), who then (they, the big Exchanges), do all the 'pay and recieves' with the many of those smaller Ad Networks & or, publishers, that are working through such Exchanges on a global basis.
Looksmart has the only independent auction based platform built to scale, that can provide this totally transparent and neutral to all service and for all involved. (Is all simply my own opinion, of course)
Disclosure: Long LOOK