FOX will use six-second commercials on NFL broadcasts

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As the human attention span shortens, so do the efforts to capture it.

For NFL games on FOX this season, the network will debut six-second commercials. They’ll be used along with the more traditional 15-second and 30-second spots.

“When the six-second ads are placed in unique positions, it has the potential to gain even more attention than a traditional unit,” FOX Sports president Eric Shanks told Sapna Mahewshwari of the New York Times.

The spots also will be used by FOX during the World Series and other big events. In some cases, the commercials will be shown on a split-screen basis. The goal will be to find natural lulls for insertion of the six-second unit.

“[F]or example, if a pitching coach comes to the mound just to have a conversation and you know that conversation is going to last 30 seconds, is a six-second unit in there going to add to the experience and then be able to decrease the amount of ad inventory somewhere else?” Shanks said.

As applied to NFL games, this could happen when officials are huddling to determine a ruling on the field, and during the replay review process. It also could happen during short time outs taken by a team not to regroup but to simply stop the clock.

This effort by FOX is separate and apart from the league’s desire to trim fat from broadcasts and to shorten commercial breaks. If the shorter commercials work for FOX, other networks undoubtedly will try them.

57 responses to “FOX will use six-second commercials on NFL broadcasts

  1. How about limiting Aikman to 6bseconds of speaking every time he says “that’s right Joe.”?

    I’d propose a drinking game but we’d all be passed out drunk before the 2-minute warning before half, at the latest.

  2. It isn’t enough that Faux Noise broadcasts propaganda and lies… now they’re using PsyOps and subliminal manipulation.

    They are a criminal enterprise worthy of derision and boycotting.

  3. ” is a six-second unit in there going to add to the experience and then be able to decrease the amount of ad inventory somewhere else?”

    No and No. It adds nothing and they’ll just sell MORE advertising barring any additional direction from the league telling them to tighten up breaks.

  4. “When the six-second ads are placed in unique positions, it has the potential to gain even more attention than a traditional unit,”

    In other words, they’re going to be more difficult to ignore/avoid. This is a terrible idea.

  5. Ha. So dumb. The viewer wants LESS commercials. No more, short commercials. Just more greed to have a commercial where there wasn’t one before. This is the absolute OPPOSITE thing everyone should be focusing on.

  6. 6 seconds? Jeez, just go the whole way and bring in microbursts of subliminal messages – or have they already?

  7. I still don’t understand why the NFL can’t just cut the amount of commercials, but raise the prices of said commercials.

    Less commercials means the value of them goes up. Isn’t that what every fan wants? Less commercials and stoppages?

  8. Ugh! Soon there will be 1-2 commercials between every play in football. There will be less screen time for actual play than there is for commercials.

    Of course, if it leaves less time to have to listen to either Joe Buck or Jon Gruden (if it spreads to other networks), then it may not be such a bad thing…..

  9. This is a smart move. Six seconds is too short to hit the mute button or change the channel.

  10. Great…is there any way to get more commercials? I don’t get the shopping channel in my cable package.

  11. I don’t care if they turn halftime into a series of commercials, but when its football time, I want to watch football and not commercials. Also, if Joe Buck could talk 90% less that would help.

    Thank you

  12. How about we get a limit as to how many times the same commercial can air during a broadcast or how many times we have to see JJ Watt during breaks.

  13. Commercials are best left to designated commercial breaks. Putting small commercials into the actual game broadcast (even if they’re only between plays, end of drives, etc) is just going to piss fans off.

  14. Yeah right in the middle of highlight plays I’m betting. Just what the NFL and it’s fans need is more commercials. The games are slowed down enough and I see many plays being missed b/c they’re showing a commercial while a team goes up tempo.

  15. Most certainly a brilliant idea. Who does watch traditional commercials anymore? DVRs have been out long enough, advertisement needs to evolve if they plan to stay in the business.

  16. Every time the officials huddle to come up with an excuse for why the packers deserve an automatic first down we’ll be distracted by erectile dysfunction? Okay…

  17. Hey why not bore us to death with even more commentary by retired zebras on rule interpretations and give teams unlimited challenges so we can slip into comas during instant replay review after review, allowing for even more airtime for debating rule interpretations

  18. Do commercials really work? I do as much as possible to make sure they have the opposite effect on me out of spite. Hmmmm which one of these is produced by someone who doesn’t try to shove their product down my throat?

  19. It doesn’t matter what the commercial length is. By week 3, they have re-run every commercial so many times the only reason I sit through any of them is to fantasize about reaching into the screen and choking the crap out of Papa John/Peyton Manning/ That dude from the Allstate commercials and everyone else that I see every 30 minutes. How about the NFL propose a limit as to the number of times the same commercial can be shown during the course of a season. Over all it’s games. I know that commercials are expensive so they want to make sure they get seen, but by the time I’ve seen it 20 plus times I’m trying to boycott your product. If I can. I’m beginning to think the real reason the Superbowl is so popular is people know that they are going to see different commercials.

  20. Oh and I pray that they jack up the.volume 100 notches for these wonderful 6 second commercials.

  21. I would like to tell FOX where they can stick their six second commercials and I think you already know where that it.

  22. Just DVR every game and ignore them all –
    They rape us for the Sunday ticket and, beat us over the head with commercials on top of it.
    Greed has no limits.

  23. Yeah, the six second commercials will free up space elsewhere. Sure……. Just admit your cramming more advertising in your sports games Fox. These short spots will make lesser companies be able to afford to advertise. “Try Bagbalm on all or your cuts or abrasions. Moo.”

  24. I have feeling this is going to get annoying. What can be said in 6 seconds to convince someone to buy something?

  25. Commercials pay for the program. If you don’t approve of six second commercials boycott their products. If that proves insufficient buy extra of their competitors. For instance, if Bud light runs a sixer, switch to Miller Lite. If that doesn’t work, drink extra Lite. If both Bud and Miller run sixers, give up beer.

  26. Why do I and the announcers know immediately when someone caught the ball, made a field goal, stepped out of bounds, crossed the plane, or was down by contact yet it takes the officials 3 minutes of silly time staring at a SURFACE PRO TABLET.

    Put an official in the booth to make the call instantly, relay it to the field and keep the game moving. O and D coordinators figured out decades ago it makes sense to have someone who can see more from the booth relaying info via headset.

    NFL needs to do the same with refs.

  27. IF this means that all of those pharmaceutical commercials about new drugs that you’ve never heard of before shrink from 5 minutes of legal disclaimers to 6 seconds; I’m all for it!

  28. Now eliminate the so called side line reporters. A dumber and more irrelvant bunch would be hard to find.

  29. If they can use this to condense the game to 2 hours and show a bunch of half-screen clips or blurbs at lulls, I would much prefer that than the current 4 hour marathon and the TD-commercial-extra point-commercial-kickoff-commercial nonsense.

  30. Right… Like they will cut ads elsewhere in lieu of these 6 second ones…

    The author clearly knows nothing about the advertising industry or how it keeps the NFL afloat

  31. The amount of commercials will be more not less.
    TV timeouts, end of quarter/half, and turnover timeouts will still occur.
    This is just a way for the network to sell more slots and try to polish a turd by saying its “shortening” commercials.

  32. That probably means even more commercials. One of these days I’m going to time a game to see how much time is spent in commercial breaks and how much is spent on commericals. It wouldn’t surprise me that over 50% of the time during a game is broadcast is spent on commercial breaks.

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