There are a lot of good things to be said about TV and movie studios opening up to the idea of streaming content. Almost any popular TV show is freely available for streaming, without any fear of copyright enforcement. Legal sites such as Hulu.com also provide a great avenue for streaming video entertainment as well. Could embedded advertising come to BitTorrent communities too?
One of the negative aspects of video streaming is the commercials that sometime preceded or interrupt a stream. Commercials are a fact of life, but many individuals are often times irritated by forced advertising. And if a company’s ad does little more than irritate potential customers, not much business can be expected. So the question then becomes, how can commercials be transparent enough to allow for a seamless video stream, yet still attract those who are interested? MiniNova thinks its latest concoction is on the right track.
MiniNova has an extensive collection of authorized and community grown torrents on its “Featured Torrents” section. Although MiniNova is largely known as a BitTorrent indexer and search engine, it also maintains a tracker for its Featured Torrents collection. In its latest endeavor, MiniNova has begun beta testing the feature. The first test will be on a relative obscure amateur comedy, but the hope is to roll out the feature with mainstream and well known work if testing goes well.
“We are pleased to announce that Mininova is testing a new technology which allows users to download and watch licensed movies and TV shows for free. These videos will be packaged by Hyper MP technology and are going to be distributed using Mininova Content Distribution for free. The unique feature of this system is that the videos can be downloaded and played anywhere in the world (no geo-targeting), and will make use of a new in-video advertising technology.”
If we take a look at HyperMP, the entity providing the ad technology, there’s a sample video demonstrating the embedded advertisement. In the short clip, the ads for Apple and the iPhone are rather small and semi-transparent – and don’t obscure the video. Such a direction in video advertising, as opposed to forced commercial segments, might go a long way in securing authorized sources as a viable alternative to piracy. Of course this is all speculation right now, and the beta test could end in dismal failure. But MiniNova’s optimistic, and there’s a good chance that more moderate file-sharers might feel the same way.
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