Auto-streaming of online ads

So, I’m reading an article about how online advertising hit a Q1 record in 2004 at $2.3B, which lead me to another article about how Yahoo! feels that its “long, slow effort to educate major advertisers about Internet advertising and to get them to change their spending habits [from television and newspaper to online]” is starting to pay off. Interestingly, what struck me more than the content of the second article was the auto-streaming FedEx ad playing in my browser amidst the article – the same ad I’ve been seeing on TV for weeks (they have other static ads for other companies in rotation, so to see the one I’m referencing you may have to refresh your browser a few times, at least until the ad stops running altogether). I must admit, like many of us, I am pretty numb to online advertising, but this really got my attention – so much so, I’m writing about it here.

So, it’s an article about getting old-school television advertisers to go online and they are simultaneously streaming a television ad to me through my browser (not as part of the article, mind you, but as a separate ad on the site). Coincidence? Who knows. Effective? Well, if the point is to get your attention, then yeah.

Has anyone seen others like this and do you have an opinion as to their effectiveness?