Australia's Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) have drafted up new video advertising standard guideline topics, and have opened them up for industry discussion over the next fortnight.

Developed by the IAB’s Standards and Guidelines Council (S&GC), the three core guideline documents are an attempt to simplify the digital video advertising planning, buying and selling process for marketers, agencies and media companies.

With Australia's internet connections slowly improving, and a lot of promise in the future for higher bandwidth, online video advertising is finally starting to realise some of its promise. Late last year, a PwC Online Advertising Expenditure Report showed online video advertising exploded with 83% year on year growth. But the industry is still largely unfettered and constantly evolving.

“The Standards and Guidelines Council of the IAB has worked extremely hard to develop guidelines that will ensure standardisation in the most common areas of the digital video landscape,” said Paul Fisher, CEO of IAB Australia. “Our objective with the release of these Guidelines is to support the continued explosive growth of online video advertising in a sustainable way and to encourage creativity and innovation in video advertising formats, while bringing our standards in line with international markets.”

The new guidelines will reflect the most common in-stream ad formats known as linear video ads, non-linear video ads and companion ads. Turn away now, if you can't stomach tech speak. The guidelines include:
IAB Video Ad Serving Template (VAST) 2.0 Guidelines. This guideline outlines a standard XML based ad response for in-stream video as well as an XML schema definition (“XSD”) for developers.This standard for in-stream ad serving is a necessary precursor to the acceptance of third party serving by publishers.  The adoption of the VAST standard is expected to bring immediate benefits to all parties in the video ecosystem
IAB Video Player Ad Interface Definition (VPAID) Guidelines.This document standardises the communication between video players and in-stream video advertising.
Online Video Advertising Guidelines. These guidelines and best practices are for the most common in-stream ad formats.
The online video advertising guidelines were developed based on input from the IAB Standards and Guidelines Council with representation across Publishers, the Media Federation of Australia, The Communications Council and Media Agencies; a review of the IAB USA Online Video Standards and Guidelines.

IAB is seeking comment and feedback from industry on the video advertising standard guidelines by 20th April 2011.