UPN To Have Ad 'Bugs' During Programming?By Caillan
August 24, 2001 - 2:21 PM
When Enterprise makes its debut this Fall viewers may have more than just strange and wonderful aliens to gaze at, as UPN is reported to be considering superimposing tiny advertising logos over its prime-time programs.
The network is apparently contemplating whether to allow advertisers to display small transparent logos, called "bugs" in TV-speak, as a bonus for buying large amounts of commercial time, according to a report at the New York Post.
McDonald's and Gillette are just two of the companies that have been approached by UPN, according to the newspaper's source. The logos would be of an equivalent size to traditional network "bugs," such as UPN's circle, triangle and square, and would appear on the screen throughout the network's prime-time line-up.
Adam Ware, chief operating officer at UPN in Los Angeles, denied that this was being considered. "I don't think the viewer would welcome replacing our bug for some period of time [with an ad logo]," he told the New York Times, "and I don't think the producers of our shows would welcome it. At the end of the day, it's not in our best interest to end up [having the TV screen looking] like the inside of a hockey rink."
However Ware did say that the network is considering all its options. "If you were to figure out a creative way of incorporating an advertiser message, that would probably be a better way to go [than the 'bugs']," he said. "In a healthy market, or a very competitive market, you need to constantly review how you're selling your time. The business has evolved and there are more ways to communicate your message, and you have to start evolving with that."