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YouTube launches video ads

By Laurie Bennett

August 22, 2007 at 4:21pm

Google, which last year purchased YouTube for a whopping $1.65 billion, has unveiled a plan to make money from the site.

Ads now appear at the bottom of some videos, eventually disappearing if the users don’t click on them. In an approach similar to Google’s AdSense program, selected content providers receive a portion of the revenues.

The program, announced yesterday on the YouTube blog, predictably has sparked complaints about ads interfering with video viewing, and calls to expand revenue sharing to all content providers.

The strategy has tremendous potential if Google can leverage the popularity of online video, its already established ad networks and the escalating traffic on YouTube.

Web analyst comScore Media Metrix reported last week that YouTube had broken for the first time into its list of the 50 most trafficked web properties. The site debuted at number 40 with 16 million visitors, a 20-percent increase over June.

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