The hedge-fund crowd is taking up a new position: managing the buying and selling of ads on computerized exchanges that follow stock market-like paths. MediaCrossing, co-founded by former hedge-fund executive Ted Yang, is making money by taking on some of the risk involved in buying digital ad space and selling it across multiple exchanges to reach niche buyers. "In their minds, advertising is more like Google than 'Mad Men,' " financial recruiter Ilya Talman said.

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