YouTube has officially launched its new TrueView ad format, which lets users skip ads they're not interested in. TrueView is currently only available to advertisers with managed accounts, so the format isn't all that widespread on YouTube just yet.
There's a catch though: the user has to play the ad for five seconds before they can hit the countdown button to skip the ad. We think such a wait time will be just as frustrating to YouTube users as the current format. Five seconds is just too long. In some cases, viewers will be able to select which ad to watch out of three options (similar to what Hulu provides).
Advertisers can decide whether they'd like to use TrueView or stick with the current platform (you can skip those ads by simply hitting refresh though). YouTube says it's working on providing more choice and control in advertising to its users.
"Advertising is what allows many of YouTube's most creative video producers to keep producing their great material - it directly funds their creative process," a YouTube spokesperson said in a statement. "And advertising is evolving. Increasingly, we're seeing the distinction between advertisements and 'regular videos' blurring as advertisers start to make ads viewers want to watch. We think that giving viewers a choice of which ads they want to watch means it's even more likely that they'll be engaged with the ad, and that advertisers will get their messages across to the right person."