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For online publishers and retailers online video is

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Unformatted text preview: establish a connection were treated to burpy audio, freeze- frame video, and lost backgrounds. Cable and broadcast television viewers had no problem. Most people love the Web, but hate the wait and the stumble that can occur. Studies have shown that most people won’t stay on a Web site if the Web page and its contents take more than a few seconds to load. Other studies show that if a video ad or sports video takes too long to buffer, shows jerky frames, or provides only poor visual quality, over half the customers will seek out a competitor’s Web site. For online publishers and retailers, online video is rapidly becoming a serious component of their business strategies. In order for these initiatives to pay off, the viewing experience needs to be nearly flawless. For marketers who increasingly are using video to establish a more intimate relationship with the consumer and the brand, the quality of the Internet video experience is critical. For Web sites such as NBA.com, ESPN, CNN, MySpace, and YouTube, whose entire business model depends on delivery of high- quality video and audio, the need for high speed and quality media is vital to their success. In today’s broadband cable and DSL environment, the threshold of patience is probably much lower than a few seconds. Increased video and audio customer expectations are bad news for anyone seeking to use the Web for delivery of high- quality multimedia content such as CD- quality music and high definition video. YouTube and MySpace have unleashed a torrent of video downloads, causing total Internet traffic to expand yearly at somewhere between 50% and 100%. BitTorrent files used to share videos now account for half of U.S. Internet traffic, and on college campuses more than 80% of campus Internet use. If...
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