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On the World Wide Web, interstitials are web pages displayed before or after an expected content page, often to display advertisements or confirm the user's age (prior to showing age-restricted material). Most interstitial advertisements are delivered by an ad server. Full-screen interstitial ads are referred to as hyperstitials.
Some people take issue with the use of such pages to present online advertising before allowing users to see the content they were trying to access. Less controversial uses of interstitial pages include introducing another page or site before directing the user to proceed; or alerting the user that the next page requires a login, or has some other requirement which the user should know about before proceeding.
Meaning of interstitial
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In this context, interstitial is used in the sense of “in between”. The interstitial web page sits between a referenced page and the page which references it—hence it is in between two pages. This is distinct from a page which simply links directly to another, in that the interstitial page serves only to provide extra information to a user during the act of navigating from one page to the next.
The first Ad Interstitial was invented in the year 2000 by Mark Robertson and subsequently coded by Marin Todorov with graphics by Andrea Witzig at Enterra communications and tested for an AT&T ad campaign with Young and Rubicam in Toronto. It was composed of a spinning world in the form of a clickable animation.
An Ad Interstitial was invented by Anthony Whetzel and Cindy Chupack while at Prodigy Services Company in 1990. In the context of Prodigy's online service, interstitial ad units were developed in response to the launch of templated site packages that offered limited graphic options for advertisers. Interstitial ads were developed and sold to national advertisers so that they could better integrate then-current print and TV campaigns into Prodigy's ad placements. The ad unit consisted of 3-6 leader ads (now known as a banner ads) distinguished by an exclamation mark next to the [LOOK] button, which the user clicked on. The link would then lead to animated graphics and text from the advertiser, with a link to see the specific product or advertiser site on Prodigy.
- Pop-up ad
- Adobe Flash, a technology similarly in its application for online advertising.
- AdBlock, a tool to prevent the display of online advertisements
- Ad server, the technology that delivers most online advertisements
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