I am leaving Usream.TV as soon as possible. Large in part due to what happened during a live sponsored event on ustream when they started without warning pushing large advertisements into the content stream.
I did not opt into having ads jammed into my viewers face. It was ridiculous. The ads where completely inappropriate for our audience.
I would have gladly payed for a premium service to not have ads forced n my viewers. But now that they have done this without warning I am finished with them they have burned a bridge here.
This could not come at a worse time as I was planning on holding the Podcast Awards ceremony on their service. I will be looking at alternatives today and tomorrow. Mogulus is one possibility but their encoding is not as good as Ustream.
The way they initiated this is wrong. No warning nothing. I understand a company has to make money just give us a heads up that this is going to start.
Sad to think that they would not consider asking people to pay for premium accounts before doing this.
Not only that but the moderator over on their forums closed the discussion when I asked to how to turn advertising off, apparently they are getting some heat over this.
I have been chatting with some of their biggest streamed shows and they are pulling the plug on them as well.
Update: It should be noted that I am not against a company making money after all they have to keep the lights on. What I do take issue with is that the ads that are being pushed into the streaming content multiple times over the course of a hour and taking up nearly 1/2 of the screen real estate. The ads popped up so many times in that the viewers where annoyed. When the viewers get annoyed they leave.
When Blip.TV came out with a pro service I gladly payed the $100.00 a year for faster encoding and the ability to have my own branded player without a watermark. They got paid and I got some cool new features. I am sure Ustream.TV is having trouble determining what is a fair value to charge for a pro-service but for many of us our viewer experience if important enough to pay for. If I were a betting man I bet the ads in those overlays do not pay that much. I bet what i would be willing to pay is more than they would ever make in this type of advertising.