MTV trials ads in pirated movie content: ‘We’ve been doing it games for years,’ says IGA

By Patrick Garratt, Monday, 3 November 2008 11:09 GMT

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The IGA has said that its in-game ads tech has been helping to provide revenues among pirated games for years, in light of the fact that MTV is preparing to trial a system to dynamically add advertising to pirated video content on MySpace – effectively giving IP holders revenues from pirated web movies.

“This is an interesting and much needed development for video content, however this is something we have already done for years very successfully for videogames via our dynamic advertising technology,” IGA co-founder Ed Bartlett told VG247 this morning.

“Essentially our system doesn’t care whether the end user has bought, borrowed, rented or pirated the game, it will still deliver regionalised ad content, earning the publisher revenues.”

Bartlett added that IGA’s delivery system also told clients how much their games are being pirated and in which countries.

The exec added that some games are capable up supported a model where a free client is funded solely by ad revenue.

“If you take this model to its extreme conclusion, you end up with free-to-play ad-funded content, with the best example of this model being Trackmania Nations, which has had over 10 million downloads to date and is now in the Guiness Book of Records as the most popular online racing sim.

“Effectively all of their revenues coming from our advertising sales, since there is no retail cost.”

Could automatically-included ads in all pirated games be a way to constantly gather revenue from inevitable piracy, though? Bartlett said it depends on games themselves.

“The story here ultimately comes back to compelling content,” he said. “Whether it be games or video or even music, it’s simply not enough to just make it free and automatically expect to generate enough users to subsidise it through advertising.

“Trackmania was a success because it is a fantastic game, with excellent online and community features, so whilst MySpace will undoubtedly experience some success with this model the reality is it’s all about the content.”

PC games publishers of the world: take note.

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