New TV Ads Can't Be Zapped

Messages built into TV pictures
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 1, 2008 7:15 AM CDT
Television viewers will not be able to avoid seeing a new form of advertising in which messages are placed in the clear space in TV pictures, such as sky and walls.   (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)
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(Newser) – Britain's leading ad-supported TV network is testing a new form of advertising that viewers can’t zap past, reports the Times of London. The new technology finds clear space in a video frame, such as blue sky or gray walls, and inserts an ad. It's being tested online before making its broadcast debut.

A network exec said the ads won’t be popping up during “a crunch point in a drama” but some experts still believe the intrusive approach could make consumers hostile toward advertisers. It’s also unclear whether the tech will pass regulatory muster in the UK, where subliminal advertising and product placement are banned from TV.