VAST – IAB Attempts To Standardize Video Ad Serving

VAST   IAB Attempts To Standardize Video Ad ServingHaving settled on new video ad guidelines back in May, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) is now trying to establish a standard for video players.  The IAB has just released a Digital Video Ad Serving Template, dubbed VAST, which is designed to standardize communication protocols between video players and services.

With the announcement, The IAB is also looking for public comments on the new template guidelines and will be allowing comments through September 10, 2008. The feedback will then be reviewed and the document will be finalized and publicly released.  To review the complete document in its current form as well as to comment on the guidelines and template, please go to:

More from the Announcement:
VAST will allow companies to build digital video players and video ad servers that have the same interfaces and speak the same standard language. Publishers who use the standard will be able to plug into multiple third-party digital video ad servers and networks without additional development and therefore enable a powerful tool for improving yield.
The VAST documentation attempts to:
  • Defines a standard ad response for in-stream video
  • Provides specifications that are compatible with any video player framework
  • Includes guidance for most on-demand video players (i.e., Adobe's Flash, Microsoft's Windows Media Player and Real Player)
  • Includes accommodations for linear video and interactive ads (e.g."pre-roll") as well as non-linear ads such as clickable overlays as described in the IAB Digital Ad Format Guidelines
"Digital video is one of the most exciting platforms to emerge within the interactive advertising ecosystem," said Randall Rothenberg, president and CEO of the IAB. "VAST is a critical industry accomplishment because it lays out a much-needed mechanism for standardization in one of the hottest areas of interactive advertising."
"VAST allows for standardized communication between ad servers and players which is essential as more and more marketers embrace digital video as a key element of their interactive media plans and publishers wish to maximize yield on their video inventory," said Ari Paparo, Group Product Manager, Advertiser Products of Google.

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Posted in Video Advertising
About the Author -
Mark Robertson is the Founder and Publisher of ReelSEO, an online information resource dedicated to the fusion of video, technology, social media, search, and internet marketing. He is a YouTube Certified, video marketing consultant and video marketing expert, popular speaker, and considered to be a passionate leader within the online video and search marketing industries. View All Posts By -

What do you think? ▼
  • Dave Kilkenny

    As someone who builds video players at my current job, I can absolutely relate to the need for video standards. Currently, video and ad sizes are left to the whims of creative departments and ad serving organizations. The lack of standards adds countless hours to development projects – as I’m left customizing every video player to meet different criteria.
    I know it would also make the job of other developers here at Permission TV that much easier.