PDF Text Ads?

I think I will have to see this in action before passing final judgment, but I don’t like the way this sounds at all. Feels like we are moving backwards.

Now, publishers will be able to show ads alongside their PDFs without selling and inserting the ads themselves, by uploading the PDF content to Adobe’s Web site to ad-enable it, then distributing the PDFs as they previously did — an easier and less costly option. Advertisers, meanwhile, can use Yahoo’s existing self-service ad system to buy text ads that will run in a panel to the right of the PDF, when it is viewed in Acrobat or Reader. Yahoo will use the text of the PDF to place contextual ads that are relevant to the subject matter of the PDF — similar to the text ads that run in blogs, for instance. For example, the editor of a newsletter for car enthusiasts could send out the newsletter at no charge and make money through the ad system, which might display ads for car accessories. [WSJ.com

Why not just PDF the site page which may already have an ad on it and create a special print option for the ad instead of a separate whole process. It’s not surprising that traditional publishers are the first people signing up instead of straight online players. No mention of any actual advertisers… wonder if this will be positioned as “value ad” rather than something people are initially looking to buy. I wonder actually if this is more of a way to justify offering more “free” content from from an inside the publisher view — even though more people would prefer web access — of course outside of printed periodicals or books. They don’t say what content will be used here…

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