Openads becomes OpenX--what's in a name?

Does the Openads name change portend great things for the company? We'll have to wait and see, says CNET Blog Network contributor Matt Asay.

Openads just changed its name to OpenX. OpenadsX is one of my top open-source software picks, given its potential to roil the ad server business . With its competitors (like DoubleClick/Google) taking 40 percent to 50 percent of a Web site's advertising revenue, the company's model of charging peanuts to advertisers to source publishers is a big boon to content publishers, 30,000 of which have signed up to use OpenX.

But after talking with publishers, Openads decided that it could provide more value than advertising revenue:

In the past few months we have spent lots of time with folk in our publisher community to understand better what you want from us. Simply, you want us to make it easier for you to make money online....[W]e plan to move with our publishers beyond our core open source ad serving software. That will always be our heart and soul. But as we start to roll out our hosted service and look towards the future, we thought the time was right to evolve our name to reflect the suite of services we hope one day to offer our publisher community.

What will that value be? I have no idea, but if it sees the same sort of traction that Openads did with Web publishers, it should be big. I'm hoping to catch up soon with OpenX's founder, Scott Switzer, to see what he and the team have in mind.

By the way, take a stroll over to OpenX's Web site. It's one of the freshest designs I've seen in a long, long time.

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About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.

     

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