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Google to Distribute Online Video Ads 186

Posted by Zonk
from the missing-the-point dept.
sufijazz writes to mention an AP story about Google's plan to start distributing online video ads. From the article: "The video expansion, announced late Monday, will affect thousands of Web sites that rely on Google to post ads related to the surrounding material on a page. For instance, a news story about housing might prompt Google to display an ad for real estate agents. Google isn't allowing the video ads to appear on its own Web site -- a heavily trafficked destination that produced 58 percent of its $2.25 billion in revenue during the first three months of this year."
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Google to Distribute Online Video Ads

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  • Adblocker (Score:3, Interesting)

    by samsonov (581161) <pennacook AT hotmail DOT com> on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:23AM (#15386490) Journal
    Another good reason to get an ad blocker. Course you have to actually play the ad:

    The appeal of Google's video ads might be dampened by controls that will prevent the messages from automatically streaming across a Web page. Google instead will display graphics promoting video ads that won't be played unless a viewer clicks on a play button.
    • Having to click the ad to play will only dampen appeal to some advertisers. Webmasters and users will love the fact that it's a nice visual ad that does not play without user consent.

      I'm sure Google will have advertisers lining up even with this "downside".
      • I have no problem with unobtrusive ads that in essence read "click here to view our ad"

        I don't even have a problem with attractive, subtle animated GIF or flash ads.

        I don't have a problem with "free" web content, paid for by the above.

        I have a big problem with fugly epileptic-causing flashing GIF ads.
        I have a big problem with flash or javascript ads which overlay the content or attempt to monopolize my browser without my content. That sort of advertisement prompted me to install Flashblocker, and when I vis
        • There is a happy medium and Google has found it.

          Naw... I'll argue you'll find most people not playing the ads, and Google will have to adjust their strategy accordingly.

          IMO, it's not a good move at all, advertisers won't go for it...

          If you were watching a TV show, and it said "turn to channel 35 for great info on adult diapers", would you be as inclined to turn to channel 35? Perhaps if you were truly interested, but advertising isn't about that.
      • Having to click the ad to play will only dampen appeal to some advertisers.

        Or maybe not. Angering potential buyers doesn't do much to make your product/service any more appealing. I personally cannot stand ads with sound, especially with voice tracks, because I'm hearing impaired, have no directional hearing, and when I'm at home late at night and I hear a strange voice talking, I worry that someone has broken into the house. (I'm serious...)

        If I'm at work and I get unexpected noise, it bothers other people
    • Before I RTFA I was going to post "Thanks Google, you'll be forcing me to finally install an ad blocker"

      But after RTFA I see that half the posts in here are misguided.

      There is one issue though: can javascript on the pages click the ad causing them to auto-play? If so, it's bad for both users and for Google - from Google's (and its customers) perspective it will be a new form of click fraud. From users' perspective, it'll suck because their bandwidth will be used up for these ads. How can Google police such
  • Nearly every site will blast annoying sounds out the instant I visit the page? We'll have to surf porn with the sound turned down?
    • I still do, ever since a "friend" sent me that damn joke page that shouts, "HEY EVERYONE! I'M LOOKING AT GAY PORN!".
  • by Red Flayer (890720) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:26AM (#15386507) Journal
    FTA: "The appeal of Google's video ads might be dampened by controls that will prevent the messages from automatically streaming across a Web page. Google instead will display graphics promoting video ads that won't be played unless a viewer clicks on a play button."

    The appeal to me is precisely that I don't have to watch the ads if I don't want to. Thank goodness.

    Of course, advertisers are probably less enthused -- but I'm sure major brands understand that potential customers do get pissed off by intrusive advertising.
    • but I'm sure major brands understand that potential customers do get pissed off by intrusive advertising.

      what dream-world do you live in? got room for one more?
      • Understanding that consumers get pissed off is different than not caring that they get pissed off. But ever notice that it's no longer as common to have video ads 'hijack' your browser when visiting websites?

        Anecdotally, I recall a couple years ago when it was impossible to visit a commercial website without having a video ad superimposed over the web page (closeable or not). I don't notice it as much anymore -- either the wembasters realize that it kills their traffic, or advertisers are realizing that
        • I recall a couple years ago when it was impossible to visit a commercial website without having a video ad superimposed over the web page (closeable or not). I don't notice it as much anymore

          You didn't happen to switch to Firefox with adblock around that time, did you? ;)

    • Wouldn't Google have to do this to comply with the Eolas patent?
      • Wouldn't Google have to do this to comply with the Eolas patent?

        Google doesn't provide the browser; they're just providing the media. The patent covers how the browser handles the display, not what is being displayed.
    • Of course, advertisers are probably less enthused....

      I suspect advertisers would gladly give up some of the exposure they get from streaming video ads in exchange for more information about who sees their ads and how popular a certain ad is (or how many times it gets clicked-and-streamed). One of the eternal problems with television advertising is that advertisers have little idea how much their message is actually being heard and seen, and by whom; there are ratings, but they're a very crude measurement

      • Very good point. And the demographics of people who DO click through is especially useful info, far more useful than those who just automatically view the ad... it helps to know who the sucke^H^H^H^H^H potentially interested customers are, and how successful your ads are at targeting your market.
    • Anyone that's unhappy about this clearly hasn't ever seen someone alt-f4 (or cmd-W if you're into that sort of thing) a browser window when it unexpectedly starts producing sound, and never look back.

      (And, in my case, find and install AdBlock as a direct result)
    • I don't click on Flash ads either but, more often than not, Firefox's NukeAnythingEnhanced is unable to get rid of them. Sure, I could get Flashblock as well but I've had some problems with Flashblock in the past.

      My major concern is being able to remove them as well with NAE regardless of if the icon is tasteful or not. So long as I can do that, I doubt I'll be as bothered with them as I am about video that automatically plays (pointing at you, ESPN.com).
      • Nukes. . . (Score:3, Informative)

        by Fantastic Lad (198284)
        I spent a long time hoping for a fully functioning "NukeAnything". I even emailed the creator of the extension with my requests and mailed him a set of my favorite books by way of thanks (for making such a cool extension). Anyway, when I last upgraded, everything seemed to smooth out nicely.

        I'm currently using. . .

        NukeAnything Enhanced .53
        Flashblock 1.5
        on top of Firefox/1.5.0.1

        I have no trouble Nuking flash banners. Maybe you can get some use out of that. . .

        Cheers!

        -FL

      • Well I am against intrusive ads too; but when you systematicaly kill ads that are the site your are visiting which are often its main source of revenue you are not doing him a favor, they are is in some sens the price you are paying to visit the site and you are taking a free ride. The alternative is a real paying site. If you want to support a site you appreciate, don't block the ads the site si displaying its as simple as that.
    • I'm sure major brands understand that potential customers do get pissed off by intrusive advertising.

      Nope. My adBlock list can attest to that.
      I'm glad I won't have to make it grow to include * from google though! ...for now
    • The appeal to me is precisely that I don't have to watch the ads if I don't want to.

      The appeal to me is that these ads will probably get blocked by my existing filters, just like the rest of Google's ads. Let them show blinking pop-ups with sound and Flash for all I care, I'll never see them. Sometimes I almost forget that websites even have ads.

  • by scsa (929805) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:27AM (#15386515)
    If the Eolas patent "Click To Activate" crap ever makes it to Firefox, I'll have to click on the ad to have it rammed down my throat? Sure, of course I will. If I didn't, it'd be like stealing the Internet.
  • Truly unfortunate (Score:5, Interesting)

    by emorphien (770500) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:27AM (#15386520)
    Not only is this a waste of bandwidth, but Google became so popular because of their clear, textual interface. And that included their ads which were usually easily visible and not obnoxious to look at. I will actually click on relevant text links, but I don't click on banner ads or video ads, ever.

    Hopefully this won't turn out as bad as it sounds.
    • Didn't they announce something like this a few months ago also? That they would start to allow graphical ads (I don't remember if they could be animated or not). They said that quite awhile ago and most of the google adsense ads I see are still text. I wouldn't worry too much about it. If they become prevalant I'm sure there will be mucho backlash. Google survives on its customer loyality (unlike file format lockin. cough, cough). If they piss off their customers there's nothing really keeping them there. T
    • Re:Truly unfortunate (Score:2, Informative)

      by analysethis (868648)
      FTFH: "Google isn't allowing the video ads to appear on its own Web site "
    • by forand (530402)
      Perhaps you didn't RTFA but as another reader pointed out: the advertisements will not stream unless the user click on it. So they will not be wasteing bandwidth nor will they be putting annoying video everywhere. If the user wants to click on an ad for something then they get a "better" experience. Seems like the same old Google to me: give the people only what they want. So you and I won't see the ads and someone who might actually buy what is being advertised will.
    • Having worked on the video playback component in Flash and Flex (I'm an engineer at Adobe), I feel obligated to enlighten you on the bandwidth implications for users visiting web sites containing Flash-based video ads.

      There are three ways [adobe.com] to play video in Flash:

      1. Embedding the video directly into the SWF file
      2. Downloading the FLV file over HTTP
      3. Streaming the video over RTMP (FMS or FVSS)

      Of these, the first one is recommended only for extremely small video clips (5 seconds or less), because embedding th

  • by E IS mC(Square) (721736) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:28AM (#15386523) Journal
    >> The appeal of Google's video ads might be dampened by controls that will prevent the messages from automatically streaming across a Web page. Google instead will display graphics promoting video ads that won't be played unless a viewer clicks on a play button.

    Its close, but still - what if I dont want any video ad appearing on my website through adsense? Do people have choice of "only text"/"text and video"/"video only"?
    • Well, they've always have the choice between various images and text formats before from Google. I doubt this will be any different.
    • There always have been the option to specify the content of the ads appearing on your site.
      You can choose between graphical ads en text ads. I'm quite confident they will add another option for this video ads.
    • by Proteus (1926) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @10:23AM (#15386822) Homepage Journal
      Do people have choice of "only text"/"text and video"/"video only"?

      Considering that Google already serves image ads through AdSense, and that AdSense subscribers can choose not to have image ads on their site, it's a good bet that sites will be able to opt-out of displaying video ads as well.

      It's a shame I can't set a cookie in my browser (or something) that tells Google I have no interest in video ads. The advertisers would like it because they wouldn't waste an impression on an annoyed viewer, and the users would like it because they can choose what kinds of ads to view.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    from Do no Evil to We are the Source of all Evil.

    Video ads will just use up a lot of bandwidth, make pages relying on google ads load slow, and be a real annoyance worse than banner ads and popups. Why aren't they doing it on their own page? Simple - they know that it makes whatever page that it shows up on look like crap and load slow.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      from Do no Evil to We are the Source of all Evil.
      It's not a logo...it's a motto.
      It's not "Do No Evil"...it's "Don't Be Evil".

      But other than that, you make a strong argument.
      Advertisements are obviously the source of all evil.
  • by suv4x4 (956391) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:40AM (#15386587)
    I'm puzzled, there has been some speculation of Google working on Flash ads support, but I didn't expect videos to make it before Flash.

    Of course, the video player of Google (the online one) is working inside Flash, and uses Flash video, but why not allow *any* Flash content as an ad?

    For once, what would be a 1MB video could easily fit into less than 100k vector and procedural (scripting enhanced) animation using the full toolset of Flash.

    ---

    Of course, last but not least, I wonder where is the promise of Google to always deliver light non-intrusive ads. Text-only ads were so great, but soon polluted by big image banner ads (not on the Google's site yet, but on google ad enhanced sites), and now... videos.

    Google is walking on a thin line right now.
    • For once, what would be a 1MB video could easily fit into less than 100k vector and procedural (scripting enhanced) animation using the full toolset of Flash.

      Because then the advertiser has to pay some Flash artist for who knows how long to magic them up a snazzy SWF file with who knows how many individually designed and programmed elements, instead of what is probably some idiot-proof tool to simply drag-and-drop an MPEG of their existing TV ads into.

    • Maybe it's to do with Google Video? Get everything in the same format and then combine them to provide something along the more fluid lines of television (video ad ad video ad, etc).
    • With a xxx*yy size flash video you can be sure to keep it in sane levels.

      I have seen flash banner ads with 10s of translucent layers and antialiasing and shit that tried to run at 1000 fps or so. One of them made an A64 come down to a crawl.
       
      • I have seen flash banner ads with 10s of translucent layers and antialiasing and shit that tried to run at 1000 fps or so. One of them made an A64 come down to a crawl.

        That's what prompted me to finally install FlashBlock and be done with it. I didn't mind (too much) the moving ads or the ones that made noise when you would mouse-over them. But when you start to screw with my CPU utilization, even while in the background, you get the boot.

        Seems to have made the system much more responsive as a result
    • I'm puzzled, there has been some speculation of Google working on Flash ads support, but I didn't expect videos to make it before Flash.

      It's not speculation - it's a reality. Google has already began serving Flash animated ads. I don't know if they still do or not - I began to block them as soon as the first one showed up.

      Side note - that ad was for Burger King. The fact that I remember this might be proof that the ad worked. However, the fact that I now immediately associate "Burger King" with "crapp

      • Yeah, I saw that one (the BK flash ad) come up on one of the sites I admin. Ugh.
      • associate "Burger King" with "crappy advertising" rather than food might also be telling

        As I was driving around town yesterday... I was amused by the thought of how repugnant I find fast food places. Somewhere along the line I stopped looking at McDs, BK, Hardees, Wendy's as suitable places to get a bite to eat.

        Instead, I go looking for the local diner or greasy spoon. Probably just as bad for me, but the food is often made by the owners of the place and it's nice to get waited on at the counter. (
    • Speaking of Flash, I'm still waiting for you to answer the question about why you claim FLEX does not lock you into Flash [slashdot.org]. What's your definition of "vendor lock-in [wikipedia.org]", and why do you claim that FLEX isn't a textbook example?

      -Don

      • I'm still waiting for you to answer

        Dude, I'm afraid of you. You've posted 22 comments in the Laszlo thread regurgitating basically the same thing like a lunatic, and now spilling it over in other threads.

        Are you obsessed with me or something? You can't get on with your life unless I agree Flex is teh evil vendor lock-in?

        I could speak for hours how Laszlo's DHTML is merely a beta and doesn't really work well (tested it), or how it existed for ages with just Flash support, or how Laszlo wouldn't exist if Macr
        • Dude, I think you're more afraid of standing up for your own words, than you're afraid of me. Grow some guts.

          FYI, I posted 22 comments because the discussion was about an article I wrote, and it was my web server that got slashdotted. I was simply answering questions and correcting mistakes. You made a lot of big mistakes, so I posted several replies to correct you. You still haven't addressed your biggest mistake: claiming that FLEX does not lock you into Flash. It's an obviously false and ridiculous s

          • Dude, I think you're more afraid of standing up for your own words, than you're afraid of me. ... You made a lot of big mistakes, so I posted several replies to correct you.

            Ok here's my last attempt, and I swear you're pissing me off, because I'll have to repeat myself AGAIN:

            Regarding speed and framework:

            I've said two or three times they don't target the same player. Technically they target a thing called "Flash Player" but they target different runtimes inside the player with a different rendering engine a
            • You've been ignoring what I say and forcing me to repeat myself many times, and you actually complained that I posted too many messages to the discussion about my own article, because you made me repeat myself so often by not listening to what I said. But you're not pissing me off, you're just making me laugh.

              "Regarding speed and framework": I will again repeat myself and say that OpenLaszlo is targetting the new SWF9 player (Flash 8.5), and taking advantage of its advanced features. So yes, they do tar

  • not so bad (Score:4, Informative)

    by swanriversean (928620) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @09:54AM (#15386673)
    <FTA>
    The appeal of Google's video ads might be dampened by controls that will prevent the messages from automatically streaming across a Web page. Google instead will display graphics promoting video ads that won't be played unless a viewer clicks on a play button.

    The activation feature could discourage many advertisers from signing up for the new video service, said Jupiter Research analyst David Card. "This isn't going to be a game changer for Google, but it gives them a much richer palette."
    </FTA>

    It really isn't that bad, although I don't know how many people are going to click the ads. I'm sure some will to start, just for the novalty, but over time, I doubt this will be a big revenue generator for Google (wasn't that an original opinion considering the quote from Mr. Card!).

    I wonder if the video will work on *nix anyway, and if it doesn't, whose going to bother installing the codec and plugin to make it work?

    Google could get themselves into trouble though, if they let those pictures be animated, but I'm sure they know not to do that, otherwise they would just have the video start automatically.
  • Well, previously I haven't been blocking Google's ads because they were just text. I guess that will change now.

    I'm sure as hell not wasting my bandwidth downloading a VIDEO every time I visit a page.
    • Really... how many of these stupid "OMG NO VIDEO ON PAGE LOAD!" posts are there going to be?

      The second comment more than half an hour before this clears up the issue.

      I can understand the tons of AC's posting it just to be stupid, but real people with real ID's this dumb?


    • I'm sure as hell not wasting my bandwidth downloading a VIDEO every time I visit a page.



      Well, what you wrote above shows that you sure as hell didn't waste any
      bandwidth RTFA.
  • Will all Adsense (TM) publishers get this, or will they need to opt in? Will the impressions or clicks be worth more to the publisher? Didn't notice in TFA...
  • one of the things that pisses me off more than anything, as someone who has a cable connection at 3Mbs, is that I'll get pages to load and hang as some remote server is loading up an ad or image or something. You sit there and look at a half loaded web page for seconds on end. Don't site admins and companies know this pisses off users?
    • Why don't you just block the ads then?
      • I do have ad blocking with firefox. but sites routinely farm out their content to other servers, and it's hard to block every ad and every server. firefox is good at blocking popups, et al., but alot of things still slow down a web page. there has to be some non-blockign way to load remote files while continuing to load the rest of the page. It just seems that too many sites have stuff coming from all over and one slowdown brings the loading to a standstill. maybe I'm just going to the wrong sites!!
  • Video based ads really get your attention, they are usually more entertaining that just a flashy logo and the companys latest deal that we see in flash ads.

    Why is this a good thing? Everyone who visits a site will actually see the ad rather than ignore it, so webmasters can demand more money and stop producing websites that try and trick you into clicking an ads and stuff.

    Video is a proven model or advertizing, ask someone what was the last web ad they seen? now ask someone what was the last tv commerical?

    Maybe advertizers will start demanding better content?

    Maybe we will see a whole new industry built on creating video ads for the web?

    Video ads usually get your attention with something entertaining... Some nice eye candy...

    This will really put a push on building better networks and pushing broadband, maybe advertizers will start putting pressure on broadband providers... Demand for bandwidth with money behind it, unlike bittorrent which is a demand for bandwidth without any money behind it.

    Ofcourse there is the bad side, it dose suck if your on dialup or slow broadband, or have a slower computer, but all you have to do is uninstall flash or not install it in the first place, hell this might be the push we need to have average joe buy a new computer and broadband...
    • You didn't RTFA either, did you? The ads won't play unless the user activates them. They won't catch anyone's eye unless they are actually clicked on by the consumer. Meaning they'll take just as much clicking as ever before.
    • hell this might be the push we need to have average joe buy a new computer and broadband...
      Yes, because I can see this being a real selling point.
      Potential broadband customer: "Why should I get broadband?"
      Salesman: "Then you can watch video ads!"
      PBC: "..."
  • by AJanuary (746139) on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @10:21AM (#15386815) Homepage
    I often "Shoot the duck" or "Stomp on the spider" or "Kill the ninja" or whatever while I'm waiting for a page to load (as pages that tend to have these adds tend to load slow). I use Firefox so when I "win" the popup doesn't appear. I just get to have a little bit of guilty pleasure. This is an interesting more. It seems to be on the face or it a poor one from what I can see, similar to what people have already states, advertisers aren't going to be happy. Then again, Google ads are very popular because they are non-intrusive. If you have non-intrusive video adds you will still be reaching the large audience Google Ads already reaches. And don't forget, if they don't click on it, its still a picture add (presumably). I guess Google are banking on advertisers realising this. See annoying add. Block it/Ignore it. See picture of something interesting. Click to play, go to website. Which would get more? Time will tell I guess.
  • Maybe Google is secretly working on more advanced video compression... DAN DAN DAANNNNNNNNNN!
  • But this wrecks integration with the rest of the site.

    (Disclaimer, I am not an adwords subscriber, so I am not sure exactly how much control you get)

    With textual ads, I assume that a little CSS can blend the add nicely into the rest of your site.

    But with these new picture (and then video) ads, they don't fit in anymore to the rest of the sites appearance.

    I realize not all sites are fashion conscious, but there are some sites out there that I am sure will hate the new picture ads.
  • A reminder (Score:4, Informative)

    by bruns (75399) <brunsNO@SPAM2mbit.com> on Tuesday May 23, 2006 @12:20PM (#15387750) Homepage
    A reminder to people who use the AdSense service (and not those of you who like to spout without knowing what you are talking about) - you can set your prefs so that only text ads will be displayed.
  • Unfortunately AIM has started running these ads in the top of their client, and they are videos. And they will just start playing at random.

    This does two things: it comes out of my speakers which are usually cranked pretty loud, AND they consume system resources temporarily enough to slow down my machine.

    That PISSES ME OFF TO NO EXTENT, so I will usually close out of the AIM client (or minimize it), I am hoping that AIM is seeing how many people let the video run it's length, and when they look at my stat,
    • That PISSES ME OFF TO NO EXTENT, so I will usually close out of the AIM client (or minimize it), I am hoping that AIM is seeing how many people let the video run it's length, and when they look at my stat, they will realize that each and every time a video comes on, I close out of it. Perhaps they will stop sending those damn things.

      You want to get *really* ticked off?

      Open up Task Manager and look at how much CPU time the AIM client uses, even when minimized. You'll find that it uses quite a bit of CP
  • Reading through these comments, one has to wonder just how short the attentionn span of the average slashdotter really is. This article is real short, yet nobody seems to have read it and everyone makes false assumptions on the "suspect the worst" model.

    According to TFA the video ads will _not_ be starting playback automatically, but only if a play button is pressed.

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