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Facebook provides automated captions to annoy less with video ads

Is this why Mark Zuckerberg was working on AI? To make ads less annoying by ridding them of the soundtrack.

tech Updated: Feb 12, 2016 12:29 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Facebook highlighted how users were more receptive to captioned ads rather than ones that required background audio. (Kleenex)

“People now watch over 100 million hours of video on Facebook each day,” reads a post on Facebook’s blog for businesses, “and each moment counts for advertisers.”

We already knew that Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg is working on an AI system. It’s already reading our faces and suggesting tags, friends and pages to follow. A study from Facebook states that, “In mobile-feed environments, people prefer having the choice to opt in to sound. Our research found that when feed-based mobile video ads play loudly when people aren’t expecting it, 80% react negatively, both toward the platform and the advertiser.”

So, its fair to expect that annoying ad videos which will catch you off guard. When you’re browsing Facebook at work, fewer ads will suddenly flare the speaker and reveal the social (media) break you were on.

However, videos have always been a compelling way of attracting customer attention. Which is going to get easier by the virtue of targeting both visual and audio senses. Until it gets you in trouble -- as the Facebook study states. With automated captions, Facebook is not just making it more advertising on Facebook easier, but also less compromising for users to browse it.

First Published: Feb 12, 2016 12:28 IST