(Mis)Uses of Technology

by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
ads, distribution network


Google Tiptoes Into Being A Content (With Ads) Distributor

from the experimental-distribution dept

As Google continues its efforts to do something useful with YouTube, it's apparently decided to try leveraging its AdSense publisher partners as a distribution channel for select YouTube videos. The whole thing sounds quite a bit forced. AdSense partners (basically, any 3rd party site that put up Google ads), and now also select from a very, very, very small selection of videos that will apparently be automatically rotated through a playlist of relevant videos. The videos will show up with ads surrounding the player -- apparently totally unrelated to video overlay ads Google launched a couple months ago (though, there are some conflicting reports on whether the overlay ads will be included). To be honest, this doesn't sound particularly compelling for a variety of reasons. First of all, if content sites wanted to add video content, there is already the ability to use the ever-popular "embed" options found on most videos on YouTube and many other services. Second, not having much real control over what videos will be appearing pretty much guarantees that the videos probably won't be all that interesting. Third, it's not clear how useful this is to either content sites or users of those content sites. In other words... what's the real benefit here?

What may be a lot more interesting, however, is the idea that Google is recognizing it has a huge network of partner sites, who are potentially content distribution partners, rather than simply ad inventory. As Google tries to morph itself away from being the one-trick (search ads) pony, that huge network of content sites both big and small (including us at Techdirt) starts to look like an impressive asset. The real question, though, is whether or not Google can either come up with the content or a platform for producing content that would build value by being distributing across this network. It's not clear if Google has fully realized this yet, or is simply (as may be the case) looking for more ad inventory. But there's something potentially much bigger if Google can also start providing useful related content to many publishers out there.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    Overcast, Oct 9th, 2007 @ 1:08pm

    If they pork it up too much, like other companies in the past, it will open the doors for a newer search engine.

    A lot of their popularity was the ease of searching and the amount of junk they did away with. Other search engines were so laden with junk they became clunky.

    I've been noticing with Google lately a lot of 'questionable' hits that aren't really what I'm looking for and I'd bet they are paid for the order they are coming up in the search.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. Google Video Ads

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. Google Video Ads

    I think little control over the video is a big disadvantage. Who knows what might pop up that your readers could find boring, stupid or even offensive to them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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