AOL’s In2TV launched this week. It’s a free classic TV video-on-demand service monetized by in-video advertising. Shows include Wonder Woman, Welcome Back Kotter, F-Troop and La Femme Nikita among others. Unsuprisingly, it does not do Mac. In2TV requires Windows-XP and Windows Media Player 10.
In2TV provides advertisers with compelling video inventory for instream broadband advertising as well as opportunities for sponsorships and accompanying banner ads. Video ads, 15-second and 30-second spots, will be limited to a total of 1-2 minutes within each 30-minute episode as compared to 8 minutes of advertising on broadcast television.
Is it me or does this model sound incredibly backward looking? Why not skip the DRM, skip the 15- and 30-second spots, skip the banner ads and release the shows direct to Bittorrent? Why not use video bugs (translucent on-screen watermarks) to promote the advertisers’ brands? AOL could reach a broader audience, build a greater and more positive brand awareness, and generate a huge amount of goodwill.
AOL would win. Their advertisers would win. The viewer would win. And Mac users would not be left out in the cold. Could someone explain what am I missing here?