YouTubers not so happy about prospect of in-video adverts

February 1, 2007

A recent poll by Harris Interactive on the habits of YouTubers suggests that the average user will not put up with adverts being inserted into video clips. The figures from the poll show that when asked if the inclusion of short commercials before every clip would change how often they will visit YouTube, nearly three-quarters of adults who frequently visit the site say they would visit it a lot (31%) or a little (42%) less often as a result.

Telling for YouTube, it seems viewers will put up with adverts on a TV network, but when it comes to user generated sites on the web, they’re less keen to put up with any interruptions. I can understand this completely; the web is awash with advertising but it is mostly avoidable either by simply ignoring it or with the use of adblocking software. However, stuff a 20 second video advert in at the start of every YouTube video and it will get annoying very quickly! If you use YouTube a lot (and this same survey suggests 32% of respondents watch less TV due to YouTube) then you will see an advert every clip you watch. A lot of those clips are short and very quickly you will have seen a huge amount of advertising. Repetition will then occur which makes the experience even more annoying.

Forcing advertising on web users is never going to work unless the offering is so good that they really can’t miss out on it. With other ways to view the same content, YouTube must be careful not to alienate it’s users!

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