It’s 2019 And We’re Still Doing Carved-Up Screens???

May 2, 2019 by Dave Haynes

My calendar confirms it is indeed 2019, and not 2009 – which makes it somewhat mind-wobbling that there are still start-up media companies touting an ad model for out of home environments based on the totally different dynamics of web advertising.

A company called AdMetv has launched in the US Northeast – mainly in bars – with a network built around heavily segmented screens and teeny ads placed through programmatic ad buys.

The pitch – like almost all ads in bars media plays – is that the venue has lotsa TVs, so monetize them!

The prospects of that working well can be heavily debated, but what is quite clear is how other companies like Chive TV and Upshow are showing content full screen, and focusing on content that gets people laughing and talking.

For AdMetv, it is the old reverse L ad zone thing that keeps broadcast TV on the screen but squeezes the signal to make room for little web-style display ads. How someone would scan a QR code on a screen up behind a bar counter escapes me, never mind why.

Those little ads will be very hard to see and read for anyone not seated in very close proximity. Even though bars have dwell time, unlike many DOOH scenarios, full screen advertising would be far more effective. But that’s a different programming and business model.

The company has joined the DPAA, which may be helpful in learning some lessons about the history of digital OOH in the sort of venues being targeted. The service is running in 25 or so venues, almost all in New Jersey.



  1. I am surprised that there isn´t any fine print on modifying input signals, especially on cable TV… I know that in the EU you need a special license to play TV on Bars/public places… but I dont know about taking that signal and doing something with it.. Anyone can share some light?

  2. Ken Goldberg says:

    Never mind that co-opting the broadcast signal may be legally edgy. Or that the beer advertiser on ESPN might have an issue with their competitor’s banner ad on the same screen (as well they should). The ads – three by my count- will never be dominant on the display. They are straight-up noise. If someone is in a bar watching a game, does anyone notice or recall the tiny ad in the corner? If ad ad plays on a barroom screen and nobody sees it, does that count as an impression? These saloon deals with L-bars have always been the haven of dreamers who think this is easy.

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