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Enforced Ads Coming to Flash Video Players

ScuttleMonkey posted about 7 years ago | from the advertising-ploy-to-rule-the-world dept.

The Internet 397

Dominare writes "The BBC is reporting that Adobe is releasing new player software which will allow websites that use their Flash video player (such as YouTube) to force viewers to watch ads before the video they selected will play. 'But the big seller for Adobe is the ability to include in Flash movies so-called digital rights management (DRM) — allowing copyright holders to require the viewing of adverts, or restrict copying. "Adobe has created the first way for media companies to release video content, secure in the knowledge that advertising goes with it," James McQuivey, an analyst at Forrester Research said.' This seems to have been timed to coincide with Microsoft's release of their own competitor, Silverlight, to Adobe's dominance of online video."

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397 comments

Oh, come on! (5, Insightful)

jawtheshark (198669) | about 7 years ago | (#18752635)

That will kill self-made videos in no time. Who really wants to wait through a 3 minute ad for tampons to watch a 2 minute rambing of a camwhore? I certainly don't want to do that.

Not that I care, I have put exactly one video of on youtube. I just had a dash of inspiration. Probably will never happen again.

Re:Oh, come on! (3, Funny)

networkBoy (774728) | about 7 years ago | (#18752689)

Funny, I put a video on youtube, simply so I could link to it from another site, but save myself the bandwidth.
-nB

Re:Oh, come on! (5, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | about 7 years ago | (#18752693)

That will kill self-made videos in no time. Who really wants to wait through a 3 minute ad for tampons to watch a 2 minute rambing of a camwhore? I certainly don't want to do that.

You don't necessarily have to be mandated to watch the commercials, there is just an option to force it now. Copyright holders who are releasing self-made videos won't have to opt-in (depending on how any of the video sharing sites' (GooTube's) management decides to handle this I suppose) to allow the ads.

I think that this is a pointless move. Flash video exploded because it was fast and there weren't forcible ads and DRM.

Re:Oh, come on! (5, Interesting)

eln (21727) | about 7 years ago | (#18752887)

The Internet is cyclical: Someone comes up with a new idea, builds a site, popularity explodes, someone tries to control and monetize it (either the original owner or someone who bought it for way too much money), the attempts at control end up smothering the product, popularity declines, someone comes up with another new idea, and so on.

Re:Oh, come on! (2, Interesting)

0racle (667029) | about 7 years ago | (#18752717)

Read it again. This will allow copyright holders to embed advertizing, not require it. Since the copyright holder of (genuine) self-made videos would be the person making it they could choose to have ads or not.

Re:Oh, come on! (5, Interesting)

networkBoy (774728) | about 7 years ago | (#18752879)

No but the TOU of sites like youtube may mandate that you accept an ad to be put in-line with your video.
-nB

Re:Oh, come on! (2, Interesting)

jawtheshark (198669) | about 7 years ago | (#18752913)

I did read the article, and saw that...But, don't you lose your Copyright to youtube and the like once you release it to their site?. I have to admit that I didn't read their terms of service, but it wouldn't surprise me at all.

Even if it's supposed to be the at the discretion of the copyright holder, how long till websites like youtube will see a great revenue stream and add it in without the consent of the copyright holder (or better said: by forcing the copyright holder to accept their terms). It's enough that they change the terms of service (which usually says that they can change it whenever they want) to say that "when posting to $OUR_WEBSITE you allow us to add advertisements to your videos". In legalese of course ;-)

Re:Oh, come on! (3, Interesting)

badfish99 (826052) | about 7 years ago | (#18752939)

Alternatively, sites like Youtube could amend their terms and conditions to allow themselves to automatically add adverts to all videos as they were being downloaded.
If they did this to every video they would quickly alienate their users. But if (say) 1 video in 100 had an advert added as you downloaded it, they could make a lot of money without losing too many users.

Re:Oh, come on! (5, Funny)

Achromatic1978 (916097) | about 7 years ago | (#18753097)

Who really wants to wait through a 3 minute ad for tampons to watch a 2 minute rambing of a camwhore?

To really rub salt into the wounds, once you've waited through that, you find the rambling of said camwhore is about how much she hates tampons.

Re:Oh, come on! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753231)

Me too, they make my dick all sore.

Re:Oh, come on! (5, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | about 7 years ago | (#18753229)

Personally, I don't even care. Unless it is really great content, I'm not going to waste my time watching any sort of ad before it. I'm tired of them trying to commoditize every god damn thing on the fucking internet.

One thing I hate is that on sites like gamespot, you have to watch an advertisement before you can watch a videogame trailer... which in itself is also an advertisement.

Hopefully this will start to kill internet video. There is nothing more I would enjoy more than seeing all these idiots who think the world wants to watch a 14 year old girl talk about how tough life is for two hours a day from her bedroom or some 70 year old moron singing and dancing suddenly go away.

They can enforce viewing of ads... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752653)

...but they can't enforce upgrades. I for one simply won't be installing this on my computer.

clever workaround (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752671)

that still doesn't prevent me from closing my eyes!

Re:clever workaround (5, Insightful)

jcgf (688310) | about 7 years ago | (#18752803)

I bet in 15 years there will be mpaa goons in your living room and you're tied up with your eyelids propped open ala Clockwork Orange. This will be considered normal by everyone and the mpaa will be trying to make even more draconian laws.

and Americans will still be telling me about how the terrorists "hate their freedom" ;)

Re:clever workaround (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753279)

Americans will still be telling me about how the terrorists "hate their freedom"

That's why the first thing to do when facing terrorism is to get rid of freedom. When you don't have freedom, terrorist no longer hate you.

Breacher of Contract! (3, Interesting)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | about 7 years ago | (#18752863)

"It's theft. Your contract with the network when you get the show is you're going to watch the spots. Otherwise you couldn't get the show on an ad-supported basis. Any time you skip a commercial or watch the button you're actually stealing the programming"
-Jamie Kellner, CEO of Turner Broadcasting

Sidenote: what does "watch the button" mean here?

That's Not How I Remember It (5, Insightful)

Greyfox (87712) | about 7 years ago | (#18753245)

I remember it as me graciously allowing them to use *MY* public airwaves to make a profit. And they ARE making a profit. I don't recall signing any other contract with them. I don't recall one ever even being implied. Not before this quote and not afterwards.

I wonder if he thinks I'm breaking some sort of contract in his head because I never so much as channel surf past his network, much less ever stop there.

already exists (1)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | about 7 years ago | (#18752679)

who says you couldn't put an opener movie in one scene and the real movie in the second and only make the video controls appear on the second scene? That takes like 30 seconds to do. If people really thought it was a good idea, they would have done it already.

Enforcing advertisements could be good (4, Insightful)

MikeRT (947531) | about 7 years ago | (#18752719)

Why would anyone buy advertisements that they knew could be easily bypassed? I don't think we'll end up with a scenario where you have a 2 minute clip that has 2 minutes of advertisement. More like you watch a music video, you see a 30 second ad beforehand.

Re:Enforcing advertisements could be good (1)

arth1 (260657) | about 7 years ago | (#18752853)

Why would anyone buy advertisements that they knew could be easily bypassed?

Because those who get irritated enough to bypass it are not a good target audience for the ad?

Regards,
--
*Art

Re:Enforcing advertisements could be good (2, Insightful)

Llywelyn (531070) | about 7 years ago | (#18752897)

Why would anyone buy advertisements that they knew could be easily bypassed?

They seem to buy television advertising space all of the time, despite that it can be easily skipped or ignored or, in some cases, circumvented entirely by downloading from the iTS or a similar service. They do it because it can be less trouble to watch the add than to skip it.

Re:They need to focus on 5 second ads (2, Interesting)

MontyApollo (849862) | about 7 years ago | (#18753301)

I think they need to really focus on the 5 second ad. Nobody will bother bypassing it. On TV, it would not even be worth skipping over with Tivo. People's attention span always seems to be getting shorter anyway.

They could provide a hot-link or "add to favorites" capability for the people who want to learn more.

Non-crap ads? (5, Insightful)

phorm (591458) | about 7 years ago | (#18753363)

Enforced advertisements are shit. I recently rented the "Man of the Year" DVD only to be forced to watch a long narrative about how wonderful HD-DVD is going to be, followed by forced-previews. To add insult to injury, I only watched half the first night and had to sit through the f*cking ads a second time before I could watch the rest.

I don't hate ads though, just being forced to watch them (especially ads that suck). Hell, I have several hundred megs of downloaded advertisements... the ones that are actually quite funny/amusing. Every now and then I shared them with my friends.

I also had somebody recently show me a clip of some type of "ad awards." It's about 1h30 long, and it's *all* ads. I only had time to catch about 30 minutes of it, but I just about wet myself laughing at some of the better ones

The solution here is not to make ads the consumer can't skip... that just pisses the consumer of. The solution is to make ads that the consumer *WANTS* to watch... the type that has somebody yelling across the room "hey Bob, get back here quick, that new Bud Light commercial I was telling you about is coming on"

Enforcing advertisements could be IMPOSSIBLE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753375)

Seriously. The major reason DRM sucks is not because it's a risk to our freedom or anything, but rather because it's such a useless, unnecessary waste of resources. How long do you think it will take Adobe's player to get cracked once it gets released in the wild and on a popular site where people care about cracking it? Maybe a day?

One more reason to shun Adobe (4, Insightful)

drdanny_orig (585847) | about 7 years ago | (#18752723)

I really hate companies that spend so much effort on trying to make me do stuff they know I don't want to do. These big media companies already have nearly every dollar that Bill Gates and Larry Ellison managed to miss; how come they need mine?

Re:One more reason to shun Adobe (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753011)

really hate companies that spend so much effort on trying to make me do stuff they know I don't want to do


Yeah, like spending your money on what they sell.

They should just, like, host all your videos and stuff and give you MP3 music and DRM free HD movies and all that junk and not expect you to pay for it at all. Because you are giving them free advertising. Bands make money off of live shows. Real Artists aren't in it for the money. Patents are wrong. Copyright is theft. Outmoded distribution model.

Did I miss any talking points?

How about this: If someone posts a sci-fi trailer or the like, and it has an embedded ad you can't skip, and you think that is a travesty of justice, just don't watch the clip or see the movie. Trust me, you might feel left out at the next LUG meeting but you won't suffer any physical harm. I haven't seen even one of movies listed in the front page poll and I'm just fine.

Alternatively you can make your own sci-fi movie and release ad-free trailers of it in Ogg Vorbis or whatever the du jour open source format is when you finish it. If you are correct, and people actually care one way or the other about unskippable ads and they aren't just going to get a sandwich while they play through them, your movie should be a smash hit. You can parlay that success into starting your own ad-free media company that will eventually topple the current majors and then YOU can start making the rules. Your current strategy of whining on Slashdot isn't likely to make a dent.

Re:One more reason to shun Adobe (1)

yada21 (1042762) | about 7 years ago | (#18753295)

Did I miss any talking points?
Yes, you missed off that all copywrites, patents (and the other thing, I don't remember what it's called) are impediments to free markets and therefore a form of communism.

Heh... (2, Funny)

Otter (3800) | about 7 years ago | (#18752725)

Meanwhile, the right edge of the text of this story is covered by the Flash ad (Sun anniversary pricing) next to it. So perhaps the Slashcode authors have prior art.

Re:Heh... (1)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 7 years ago | (#18752751)

Meanwhile, the right edge of the text of this story is covered by the Flash ad (Sun anniversary pricing) next to it.
Really? I see so few ads online that I forget what a stinking mess it is for the non-Adblock masses.

Re:Heh... (1)

networkBoy (774728) | about 7 years ago | (#18752925)

No kidding...
My wife won't use my firefox install as it is secure by default (no-ads, no script, etc.) and it's a PITA for a non techie to use (and for some mysterious reason hates AOL's mail server [sigh, yes she insists on keeping her AOL address] ). So she uses Mozilla and is happy with it. I sit down to help her with something from time to time and wham! ads. I instinctively right click the ad to add it to the block list... :(
-nB

Re:Heh... (1)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 7 years ago | (#18753017)

I get nauseous when I have to use someone's IE for web browsing. My standard install for all computers I work on (including mine, the one used by my wife and kids, my parents' computer, and my wife's parent's machine) puts Firefox on the desktop with Adblock Plus and Filterset.G. I used to use Flashblock but so many sites use so much Flash that it became a real hassle. Although, others find it humorous that my three-year old knew to right-click on Flash objects so she could get around on PBSkids.org :)

Re:Heh... (1)

jimstapleton (999106) | about 7 years ago | (#18753163)

I haven't gotten flash to work on my BSD machine...

Aside from a couple games that I can easily live without, I don't miss it. A few sites have intros that can't be viewed, but I skip those anyway because they are annoying wastes of time.

And best of all, I don't have to deal with the lack of a mute button in Flash.

Re:Heh... (1)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 7 years ago | (#18753361)

I haven't gotten flash to work on my BSD machine...
I know I risk losing my slashdot login, but I used Windows XP. I have an Apple Quicksilver with OS X (10.2, I think) that we tried for a while and I've ran both Ubuntu and SUSE in the past few years. With a fairly non-technical wife, two young kids, and myself, we've not been able to replace XP. I don't have spyware or virus problems (I'm behind a firewall and use Firefox exclusively). Rather than give up quite a few games, web sites, and assorted software, we're happy with Windows XP in our controlled environment.

Aside from a couple games that I can easily live without, I don't miss it. A few sites have intros that can't be viewed, but I skip those anyway because they are annoying wastes of time.
I have found in the last year that many sites are increasingly using Flash for menus and real content. We can argue about whether this makes sense, but explain that to my wife and kids :)

gnash to rescue (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752727)

Suddenly I feel strong urge to support Free Software
http://www.gnu.org/software/gnash/ [gnu.org]

Re:gnash to rescue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753089)

which would be good but

1) the content won't play with gnash

2) pretty much none of the content which is already out there will work with gnash

I'm not trolling on the second point there (hell, I love free software and only use linux), gnash just doesn't work - I'd like it to, I just don't use flash content at all now - but its pretty much a no-go, I've yet to find any content that it will actually play...

Because...? (1)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | about 7 years ago | (#18753249)

I'm not sure I see your point. If a content provider wants to give you content that doesn't have DRM restrictions or forced adverts, they still can. Adobe isn't forcing content providers to force DRM/Adverts, they're giving them the ability.

So here's the riddle. If a content provider wants to force you to use adverts, they will force you - Gnash won't help. If they don't want to force you, Gnash is unnecessary. So what, exactly, does this have to do with...well...anything?

R.I.P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752739)

Youtube and youtube clones.

Forced Ads...Forced Consumers? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752749)

What is the point? Are they going to force us to become consumers of the advertised products too?

What ever happened to the idea of targeting willing people? I'm not interested in whatever you want to sell me, so don't waste your time or mine forcing me to watch an advertisement. If anything, you'll make me less likely to purchase whatever it is you want me to buy.

If people were interested, they would watch the ads and make careful decisions. Yet, some people seem to think that we need to be strapped to chairs and have our eyes forced open to watch Big Brother ala 1984 tell us the "Good News" of whatever it is that Big Corp. wants to sell me.

Re:Forced Ads...Forced Consumers? (1)

MontyApollo (849862) | about 7 years ago | (#18753095)

Advertising is everywhere, even here on slashdot, driving down the road, watching TV, reading a newspaper, etc... The 1984 reference is kind of over the top. No one is forcing to use the products advertised; they just want you to know they exist, even if it is on a subconcious level.

Advertising allows you to get a product for free or at a discount. You will probably only see it on professional videos that people otherwise would consider purchasing. In the future you will probably be given a choice - pay a dollar or watch a 30 second commercial.

Re:Forced Ads...Forced Consumers? (1)

JudicatorX (455442) | about 7 years ago | (#18753287)

...meanwhile, you pay more for the products advertised, because the money was spent on advertising.

Have no illusions...

Why are they leeching off me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753137)

I'm paying the cable bill so why don't I get a cut?

I don't watch YouTube much (about three times so fa I think). Ads like this would stop me cold. If they turned up on /. and I couldn't get rid of them, I'd drop /. too.

Re:Forced Ads...Forced Consumers? (1)

garcia (6573) | about 7 years ago | (#18753237)

What ever happened to the idea of targeting willing people? I'm not interested in whatever you want to sell me, so don't waste your time or mine forcing me to watch an advertisement. If anything, you'll make me less likely to purchase whatever it is you want me to buy.

Because they have found that in order to purchase information about targeted groups costs more than just information about a larger unspecified group. The returns are about the same regardless (somewhere between 1 and 2% on average and up to 10% depending on the application) so why not annoy as many people as possible?

It's unfortunate, but in this day and age people are so accustomed to the advertising barrage that they don't make a sound. When you do complain you are labeled an asshole.

Why do they keep trying? (3, Insightful)

pla (258480) | about 7 years ago | (#18752755)

allowing copyright holders to require the viewing of adverts

Coming soon, to a codec pack near you:

FlashAlternative.

Re:Why do they keep trying? (1)

ZombieRoboNinja (905329) | about 7 years ago | (#18753119)

That is assuredly true. But you have to bear in mind that alternate codecs, browser plugins, etc. are only for the tech-savvy crowd. All those millions of folks who log into YouTube to watch videos of cute kittens probably aren't going to know how to skip the ads. Sort of like the current situation with AdBlock and its kin.

Re:Why do they keep trying? (1)

Bralkein (685733) | about 7 years ago | (#18753185)

Right. I am interested in how Adobe "features" like this might affect the popularity of GNASH [gnu.org]. Granted, GNASH isn't quite there just yet, but I get the feeling that it won't be long before it's a decent drop-in replacement for Adobe's rubbish. If/when it gets to this stage, I wouldn't be surprised if it gains widespread adoption as a consumer-friendly alternative, with support for such features as skipping annoying adverts in Flash videos, blocking crappy flash pop-up ads and malware on websites, and all the rest.

God knows what's going to be done about Microsoft's "WE MUST OWN THIS MARKET. RESISTANCE IS FUTILE" Silverlight though. I suppose some heroes of Free Software are going to have to sacrifice thousands of hours of their lives to the thankless tasks of reverse-engineering and re-implementing the spec...

I'm all for this (-1, Troll)

Bob Abooey (224634) | about 7 years ago | (#18752765)

Frankly the "cult of free" generation is coming to an end. We've had it easy for quite a while - free software(free like mp3's and Public radio - not like free beer) free movies - free everything. It's can't last forever, at some point in a capitalist society people need to make a profit.

In fact I've ditched the free paradigm and started buying stocks in the companies who actually charge for stuff - when the gravy train leaves the station I don't plan on being left behind.

Re:I'm all for this (4, Insightful)

vertinox (846076) | about 7 years ago | (#18752907)

It's can't last forever, at some point in a capitalist society people need to make a profit.

Who said anything about capatilism? Last I checked we lived in a socialist state. After all... In a true capitalist free market, it wouldn't be illegal to bypass DRM and companies wouldn't get paid anything unless they actually made a sale rather than tax compensation for "theoretical losses" due to piracy.

Re:I'm all for this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752973)

Who hasn't been making a profit?

Last time I copied a DVD, the electric utility made a profit off me, my ISP made a profit off me, the blank DVD manufacturer made a profit off me, the big box store where I bought the blank DVDs made a profit off me, the DVD case manufacturer made a profit off me (as, again, did the big box store), my computer manufacturer and DVD writer companies made a profit off me when I bought the hardware to do this, my operating system vendor made a profit off me, and the ad-supported web site hosting the software I used made a profit off me.

They'd make even more profit off me if they'd make new hardware with the features I want, namely, copyability.

Re:I'm all for this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753151)

The way you worship capitalism like that makes it as dangerous to liberty as communism was to those who worshipped that. There is nothing wrong with free. Most people are unwilling to 'pay' (in time or money) for crap, which is 98% of the flash content on the net these days... If people have to sit through ads to watch shoddy homemade videos on youtube, that will nix whatever limited interest they had in the video in the first place. However, all hope is not lost. This should spawn a greater demand for a flash alternative that does what the user wants instead of what the 'content provider' wants. Another alternative is simply not to use flash as a container. There are plenty of other preexisting standards for embedded video which work much better and aren't platform dependent.

Advertising is killing itself off. Because society is so inundated with it, the S/N ratio is hitting record lows, and as advertisers become more audacious in their attempts to grab your attention, the higher the probability that you will be annoyed with instead of interested in the product. Excessive advertising is one of the strongest examples of business run amok.

48 hours (4, Insightful)

rossz (67331) | about 7 years ago | (#18752781)

I give it 48 hours after initial release before a patch to bypass the ads is released online.

Re:48 hours (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753209)

I give it 48 hours after initial release before a patch to bypass the ads is released online.
I bet a hack is released before the product is.

Re:48 hours (1)

umStefa (583709) | about 7 years ago | (#18753243)

I'll take that action. I don't think it will take more than 4.8 HOURS never mind two whole days.

Cannot force anything. (5, Interesting)

Lethyos (408045) | about 7 years ago | (#18752789)

Fine, then I do not want to watch the content at all. I am willing to be lots of other people feel the same way. And considering the scale of amateur content production these days, I think there is plenty of room and sponsorship for alternative sites.

Re:Cannot force anything. (1)

Valtor (34080) | about 7 years ago | (#18753107)

...I think there is plenty of room and sponsorship for alternative sites...
Exactly, this will just push people towards sites that do not enforce ads in this way.

Damned Flash (5, Insightful)

Deagol (323173) | about 7 years ago | (#18752809)

I can't be the only one who despises the use of Flash on these video sites. Apart from the fact that my primary OS doesn't support Flash, I hate Flash players out of principle. There are such better, more universal video formats out there, I just can't understand why the hell these sites convert the videos to such a crap format.

Re:Damned Flash (2, Informative)

Butisol (994224) | about 7 years ago | (#18752937)

Damn fucking straight. A similarly sized file in WMV or RM format plays silky smooth, but on Flash it comes out all choppy and pixelated on my older system. A standard for large video aggregation sites is okay, but why does it need to be such a shitty standard?

Re:Damned Flash (3, Insightful)

Metaphorically (841874) | about 7 years ago | (#18753007)

I can't be the only one who despises the use of Flash on these video sites. Apart from the fact that my primary OS doesn't support Flash, I hate Flash players out of principle. There are such better, more universal video formats out there, I just can't understand why the hell these sites convert the videos to such a crap format.

Minor correction: Flash doesn't support your primary OS.

Carry on.

Re:Damned Flash (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753009)

So what 'better, more universal' format would you use?

Re:Damned Flash (2, Insightful)

Deagol (323173) | about 7 years ago | (#18753399)

Some form of MPEG encoding. MPG4 seems to be all the rage these days, people compressing moveis to play on their phones or iPod Movie (or whatever it's called). MPEG4 has tight, efficient encoding and good quality.

Re:Damned Flash (1)

ardor (673957) | about 7 years ago | (#18753033)

Because the embedded players suck.

- Totem often has the GStreamer backend, which in turn often does not have the codecs 99% of all people use. OK, geeks can refit them, but this is not about this group.
- VLC has ZERO controls. No play, pause, volume, ....
- MPlayer crashes, too often. When I use the mplayer plugin, I always stop before visiting a site with a video. Its especially bad when one closes a tab which is currently playing a video.
- gxine opens a new window (which is the worst solution possible), and crashes.
- kaffeine is more stable than gxine, but too opens a new window.

The only good embedded player I know of is Media Player Classic in Windows. It beats all the players above as well as the WMP one.

Flash video players are a horrible user interface (4, Insightful)

kherr (602366) | about 7 years ago | (#18753145)

The YouTube-ization of web content is an affront to user interface design, not to mention the underlying framework of the www. Ever go to a web page with six or seven auto-loading videos? Yikes. To make things worse, if you leave the page and come back the videos load all over again, because they are not cached. Talk about unnecessary use of bandwidth.

And the players themselves, ugh. Notice how they all look like the QuickTime or Windows Media players, but the controls don't really work? Try and fast forward or reverse reverse playback. Sometimes the play/pause barely work. The Flash video players have the familiar video controls, but they're quite often no better than fake plastic ones glued to the screen.

Re:Damned Flash (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753305)

Flash is a lot more standard than AVI, WMV, RM, DIVX, MOV and OGG. So what should we be using instead? I've only ever had problems playing Flash content under PPC versions of Linux. Windows, Macs, i86 Linux it's fine. What the hell are you running?

Re:Damned Flash (1)

dedazo (737510) | about 7 years ago | (#18753357)

more universal video formats out there

Yeah, Real, WMV, ASF, AVI, OGG, MPEG, MOV, H.264, Theora, etc. Universal standards are great, because there's so many of them to choose from! Oh wait...

But the real question is... (4, Interesting)

L4m3rthanyou (1015323) | about 7 years ago | (#18752843)

...Will it work in Linux? Seriously, I'm really sick of Adobe's neglect of linux users. Let's hope this doesn't break the Linux Flash 9 plug-in for sites that use the ads.

Re:But the real question is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752883)

adobe is really sick of linux users crying about support. "shove it" was the exact words of one of the developers at adobe.

Re:But the real question is... (1)

L4m3rthanyou (1015323) | about 7 years ago | (#18753001)

I can't say I blame them, especially since the Flash 9 plug-in does work well (an AMD64 build would have been nice, but whatever). However, it was a long time coming, and it would really suck to make it obsolete so soon after its release.

Enforced not watching (4, Insightful)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | about 7 years ago | (#18752847)

That's the approach i took to network television.

10% ad load is not so bad (say 10 seconds for a 100 second video). That's what the ad load was like for television back in the 1950's and 1960's.

Advertisers have pushed it way past 33%. In some cases the ad load is almost 50%.

How can they even expect us to bother wading through 50% ads to get to content?

Re:Enforced not watching (5, Funny)

isaac (2852) | about 7 years ago | (#18753109)

How can they even expect us to bother wading through 50% ads to get to content?


Make ads the content. Problem solved. (MTV was founded on this business model.)

-Isaac

Re:Enforced not watching (1)

networkBoy (774728) | about 7 years ago | (#18753139)

I don't have sat, cable, or broadcast TV (I netflix any show people say I should watch, albiet a season later). Please though, I can't believe that anything would have a 50% ad-load... Who (broadcaster/show) does this? I'm genuinely curious. Last I remember was ~4/9/4 or ~5/7/5 for an hour long show (17 min ads + 43 min content).
-nB

Re:Enforced not watching (1, Informative)

hal2814 (725639) | about 7 years ago | (#18753173)

Those rose-colored glasses must make it hard to read numbers. In the 60's advertisements made up 9 minutes of every hour (15%). Today advertisements take up 18 minutes of every hour (30%). That's a lot more than it used to be but it's not quite the 33% you say that "advertisers have pushed it way past" and nowhere near the 50% you claim.

I like flash (1)

fermion (181285) | about 7 years ago | (#18752849)

OTOH, I think the consistent misuse of flash has made it much less of a valuable platform for what I would consider legitimate purposes. I never understood why macromedia made the decision to cater flash to the push advertising crowd rather the creative crowd. I suppose they make more money that way.

As a result of that decision, though, I tend to not visit sites that rely heavily on flash. For instance, I still us Yahoo finance instead of Google finance. Due to historical reasons, flash used to crash my browser often, I did not install flash for the longest time, and now only do so in conjunction with blocker software. This of course reduces the ad revenue of the web sites I visit, as I use very weak ad blocking software, but never see the flash ads. I see most of the static image ads, and all the text ads.

I had hoped that the Adobe acquisition might mean that Flash might become a better citizen, for instance including an option of load and run flash only with user consent, much like we can still do with images and gif animation. Instead we still see Flash used as an advertising and porn delivery system, which is profitable, but hardly consistent with the Adobe's core business.

Another example of good technology, bad delivery. Like the laser disk.

NEXT! (3, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 years ago | (#18752893)

Ok, Flash is dead, what's the alternative?

Bonus question for 100 bucks: When you force user A, using product B, to do things he doesn't want to do while there are a billion alternatives for B, will user A keep using product B?

Re:NEXT! (1)

networkBoy (774728) | about 7 years ago | (#18753215)

Special bonus answer:
The user likes the new features, you're confusing user and product (the latter being the viewers).
-nB

Re:NEXT! (1)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | about 7 years ago | (#18753291)

Talk to the content providers. If consumers don't want this shit, the content providers won't use it. It has nothing to do with Flash. You people seem a little confused on the whole DRM issue. Providing the technology is a separate issue from the policies content providers choose to enact. Adobe isn't doing anything wrong here. It's like blaming the gun manufacturers when some piece of shit nutjob goes on a killing spree.

The death of youtube is greatly exaggerated (2, Insightful)

hellfire (86129) | about 7 years ago | (#18752909)

Just a few posts in and already people are spelling doom for youtube and the like. What's odd is that people think this somehow requires you to put an add on your home grown video blog if you use flash, which is ridiculous. This is basically an opt in system. If you want DRM and an ad on your video content, you can do so. Adobe is wooing the media companies with features they want. This isn't for anyone who doesn't want to use DRM, and you should be able to easily turn it off.

What this basically does is make it harder to copy your favorite clips from the daily show and late night with david letterman to Youtube very quickly. Now, you have to be a cracker who breaks the DRM and THEN posts it to Youtube.

Re:The death of youtube is greatly exaggerated (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752985)

I think you have it mixed up. The clips are often recorded by people with VCRs or DVRs and then captured and uploaded. The DRM is for the Flash clips that get uploaded, so this will make it harder to take content off of Youtube and use it elsewhere, and make it harder to avoid the ads that Youtube wants to put in.

Fortunately, this should be pretty simple to crack and I fully expect that a cracked version of Flash Player will be released that allows you to skip unwanted advertisement (If you don't want to watch it, you probably were not going to buy the advertised products anyway regardless of viewing the ads or not).

As far as DRM is concerned, I highly doubt that will be a big obstacle. Expect tools to be released to export video and remove the advertisements with the click of a mouse. It already happened to DVD, its happening to Blu-Ray, and it will happen here.

Big deal (3, Insightful)

Xtense (1075847) | about 7 years ago | (#18752917)

Ok, so even if it gets adopted on some of the bigger sites, people will just run away from them to some other, more free alternatives. Great job, ad-guys, you've just lost your big user-base. People who push stuff like this have, and i quote, "no fucking clue". First they should pull their heads out of their asses, then try to think of a way of either making old media more attractive to the general consumer, or harnessing the internet's potential in some other, non-invasive way. Although for me, they should just wither off and die.

(Sorry for angry tone, I'm just tired of things like this.)

No Flash, No Java, No Javascript (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18752971)

My primary browser has none of that BS and I run under linux. I have almost all ads and cookies blocked. Otherwise the internet is far too obnoxious. youtube-dl works great to download youtube content for mplayer.

F'em.

Flashblock firefox plugin: view only what you want (-1, Offtopic)

dananderson (1880) | about 7 years ago | (#18752989)

Flash ads used to annoy me, but now that I use the Flashblock plugin [mozdev.org] to Firefox, I only view the flash I want to (99% of the time flash is an annoying animated ad).

This doesn't take care of ad "previews" on the rare flash you may actually want to see, but nobody is forcing to to watch it.

Re:Flashblock firefox plugin: view only what you w (1)

CowTipperGore (1081903) | about 7 years ago | (#18753123)

Flash ads used to annoy me, but now that I use the Flashblock plugin to Firefox, I only view the flash I want to (99% of the time flash is an annoying animated ad).

This doesn't take care of ad "previews" on the rare flash you may actually want to see, but nobody is forcing to to watch it.

I've been using Flashblock for several years myself but recently stopped putting it on new machines. While I am annoyed that about five percent of Flash ads somehow get past Flashblock, the real issue is how many sites are Flash-heavy now. It isn't uncommon for me to browse to a site and see five or six boxes with an arrow (indicating blocked Flash content), most or all of which are legitimate content and not annoying ads. I've never found Flashblock's whitelist to work properly either.

I now use Adblock Plus with the Filterset.G updater and skip Flashblock altogether. I still block the annoying ads but don't have to deal with a dozen right-clicks per page just to view a site.

Re:Flashblock firefox plugin: view only what you w (1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about 7 years ago | (#18753153)

You're missing the point: This is about tacking ads you don't want to see to a flash file you do want to see. If you want to see the video, you'll have to swallow a dose of ads. No ads, no video.

Awww... that's so sad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18753063)

They just released the native port for Linux and now Slashdot announces that Flash is dead.

Youtube is one of the few places that make use of Flash for something more relevant than commercials.

Vote with your feet. (1)

pair-a-noyd (594371) | about 7 years ago | (#18753077)

Refuse to use. Walk away and don't use it.
Let the rebels of the world invent something better that's free and non oppressive.
Sooner or later people with decide enough is enough but they better make it sooner while they still can.
Time for a pitchfork and torch rally up to the mountain...

Flash has *always* had enforced ad viewing (5, Informative)

chrisspurgeon (514765) | about 7 years ago | (#18753093)

Adding DRM to off-line viewing of videos is new, but for the typical scenario of online viewing of Flash videos via a Flash player embedded in a HTML page, the ability to force ad viewing is nothing new. It's always been easy to roll a Flash video play that doesn't allow skipping or scrubbing through the video ad, but then enables that feature once the main video begins. Many sites that feature Flash video do exactly that.

There goes Flash down the drain. (3, Funny)

unity100 (970058) | about 7 years ago | (#18753129)

As a web developer all i can say is this.

Re:There goes Flash down the drain. (1)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | about 7 years ago | (#18753333)

Why? Are you under the idiotically mistaken idea that Flash now forces you as a web developer to use forced adverts and DRM. Do you thikn Flash ships with stock adverts you must use if you don't want to do your own? Your statement utterly confuses me. If you don't want forced adverts or DRM, don't use it - it has nothing to do with Flash itself.

Java Applets (0, Redundant)

Doc Ruby (173196) | about 7 years ago | (#18753147)

That kind of forced content inside interactive viewers will likely force a resurgence in Java player applets. Of course DRM applets can be written and published, but it won't be mandatory. If the video content is in an open format, then the player must enforce the DRM, which the publisher of the applet can decide for themself. If the content is in some proprietary format, it will not be as popular as content in an open format.

I just wish that Java would let me cache the applet fingerprint, so I can pull it from cache instead of downloading the identical one from each website publishing it.

All it will take will be YouTube to switch for the Flash version to get punched back into serving consumers. And if not YouTube, then it opens a competitive advantage for a new contender to come out of nowhere like YouTube did.

This Net video wave is just getting started. Consumers are more empowered to demand our interests be protected than ever before, in part because of the interactive video networks we've already got. We can get this thing right from the beginning, if we work together.

and USERS are now free to hate your outfit (1)

swschrad (312009) | about 7 years ago | (#18753165)

takes five seconds to find another web site and click over, screw you, dudes.

it's now time for the market to test this. users won't buy it, then adobe and the web sites that put this silly slop into play will be branded as total assholes in no time.

let the marketplace work....

Let "Capitalism" cure this (3, Insightful)

mlwmohawk (801821) | about 7 years ago | (#18753225)

Every time you see a forced ad, write the company advertising and tell them you will no longer buy their product.

If enough people do this, then it will go away.

The "free market" works when consumers view themselves as citizens instead of sheep.

Could this help kill Flash? (1)

moore.dustin (942289) | about 7 years ago | (#18753267)

Flash can be great, Flash can be horrible, it depends on what and how something is delivered. Flash has always left a bad taste for web developers and many end users, but nothing to threaten the format, till now?

The only way Flash will go away is by people not watching whatever is delivered through that medium. Be it through blocking the technology or using another, voting with your dollar is what decides how these formats will survive. When I read this, I tend to think that this will only serve to bother people; bother people like pop-ups did/do; bother them enough to block the ads. We all know the results of pop-up blockers, it is way less pop-ups to block. If that happens to Flash, it will likely be an reversible trend. Think about it, once you start blocking something, even partially, what are the chances you ever lift that block? Any damage Adobe causes with this, might be reversible.

Thoughts?

Bad idea. (1)

EddyPearson (901263) | about 7 years ago | (#18753371)

NO ADOBE! Just no! How on earth do you expect to beat the latest "Microsoft release *PRODUCT HERE* killer! *SOFTWARE COMPANY* are panicing" release by alienating your userbase? Just to make a quick buck? Very very naughty.
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