Facebook is going to start showing ads in the middle of its videos and sharing the money with publishers

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Facebook is about to start testing a “mid-roll” ad format that will run ads in the middle of videos that publishers upload on the social network, and these ads can start as soon as 20 seconds into watching a clip.

Facebook started seriously showing videos to its users a couple of years ago, and by 2016, users were reportedly watching 100 million hours per day. But previously, video creators saw little to no ad revenue from their videos because they were allowed to create sponsored videos, but they couldn’t include ad spots which would have guaranteed a steady flow of cash, so lots of them limited what they posted on Facebook.

King Mark Zuckerberg

(Photo: The Economist)

So for publishers, who expect to make money from their video content (This wouldn’t affect homemade footage– it’s intended for pros who expect to make money), this will come as welcome news especially since Facebook will be mirroring the revenue split that YouTube employs, where video creators get 55% of ad sales.

For Facebook, needless to say, it is a smart move, because video creators, who now know that they can make an income from Facebook without outside sponsorship or partnerships, will post more videos, expanding the social network’s video database; and adding another step to Zuckerberg’s move to take over the world.

But for viewers, however, this is a two-edged sword. On the one hand, you may have to get used to seeing ads when you’re watching some videos on Facebook. On the other hand, publishers who now know that they can make money from these videos will be pressed to create videos good enough to hold your attention for, well, longer than 20 seconds; so an increase in the quality of videos we are watching.

If the new ads take off, video creators will make real money from the stuff they’ve been running on Facebook.


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Written by Shadrach Annang

Shadrach "Junie" Annang is a Digital Media Strategist and Content Creator at Gh Links- leading news and information platform in Ghana. He's the Co-Founder of Gh Links Media and Published Photographer. Connect with Junie on Twitter and Linkedin!

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