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Auto-Play Video Ads Are Coming To Facebook



/ 4 years ago

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“Good news everyone, auto-playing video adverts are coming to Facebook”, “yaaaay that’s awesome!” … said no one ever.

Facebook seem to need a reason to annoy its user base, ever few months once things have settled down and people are going about their day, up crops a new change that is set to anger their users to a new degree, it’s starting to get pretty annoying too, but what if Facebook starting shouting at you to buy things, playing music to you that you didn’t want to here or started telling you about the benefits of claiming your PPI back, especially when your sitting on the bus, or just checking your messages on a Sunday morning? Sounds pretty good right? Nope I didn’t think so either.

I understand the need for online advertisements better than most, they’re vital to the way many websites operate and without such systems most of the sites you love and use simply wouldn’t be around today. Facebook on the other hand is different, at least in my opinion and this new move is to make more money for investors, not to keep the lights on and keep the site up and running.

A report from the Financial Times suggests facebook will be using its bigger sponsors such as Coca Cola, Ford and American Express for the new video adverts and it’s likely going to cost those sponsors a lot of money to place these ads, given the potential reach and targeting that Facebook can offer via its ad system.

Facebook has already tried things such as sponsored stories and that ended up getting Facebook pulled into a lawsuit that cost them $20 million, but will they make the same mistake again with video ads? That all depends on how they integrate them and more importantly where.

There are already systems in place to embed videos in your time line (for Pages) but there’s no auto-play and this content doesn’t go live to the news feed of readers, but all that could be about to change of course.

It’s expected to go live in July and it’s expected to be a very slow and progressive roll out (so you don’t run away).

Yet all this comes with a stark reminder and it’s one I often have to point out. As much as I don’t want auto-play videos on Facebook, I really don’t have a say in the matter. Facebook is at the end of the day (in its most basic form) a free service and no one is making us use it. Zuckerberg and his pals know this of course, so they need to tread this line finely or risk loosing more users of the service.


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