Ad Age hops on board the story we’ve been writing about for months now, about how perhaps by this time next year online streaming of TV shows will have the same commercials that run nationally on TV, at least within three days of when they aired on TV.

In fairness we were first tipped off by Turner research chief Jack Wakshlag last October.  Wakshlag (and others)  had been stumping for online measurement by Nielsen of TV shows.  Specifically they wanted online viewing counted in the C3 measurement (commercial viewing live plus 3 days worth of DVR viewing) and  I’d suggested no advertisers are going to care about that unless the online streaming included the same ads as on TV.

Mr. Wakshlag left a comment with a nice version of “Duh! I’m not an idiot, the videos will carry the same ads as aired on television for at least up to three days.”

There are at least a few ramifications to this:

1.) more money: the networks will be able to monetize online viewing at TV rates and across many many more ads.

2.) there will be a lot more commercials in the online streams than the handful you get in a typical one hour show online today.  Ad Age covers some of the concerns about that.

3.) the PR machine will be set in motion to decry DVRs an obsolete technology and how online is where it’s at.  OK, CBS research David Poltrack already has set that in motion.   What Mr. Poltrack doesn’t reveal however is his true motivation:  “you can easily skip those ads on your DVRs,  but you won’t be able to online. Death to DVRs, long live online!”

I favor transparency a bit more than Mr. Poltrack, but for what it’s worth, I don’t blame him, and once the Nielsen online measurement is in place he’s likely to get much more support for his rallying cry.

Sooner or later the New York Times will do a big write up on this.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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