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Google Invites AdSense Publishers To Rich Media Beta Test

According to search marketing expert Jennifer Slegg's Web blog, Google has started testing rich media ads on AdSense, its network of Web publishers. Rich media, including interstitials, expanding ads and floating ads, is a major departure for Google, which had limited its advertising services to text and graphical ads. The company began quietly recruiting a few of its publishers a few weeks ago, according to the blog, but details are scarce, as each publisher likely had to sign a nondisclosure agreement before proceeding with the tests. As Slegg points out, of all the rich media formats, it's surprising to see Google testing interstitials--which are essentially rich media pop-ups--as the company has always been so sensitive about annoying its users. If Google started offering rich media ads to all publishers, it could have potentially devastating results for rich media's third party pioneers: FastClick, PointRoll and co.

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