WO2001039067A1 - Method and system for advertising on a network - Google Patents

Method and system for advertising on a network Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2001039067A1
WO2001039067A1 PCT/US2000/031208 US0031208W WO0139067A1 WO 2001039067 A1 WO2001039067 A1 WO 2001039067A1 US 0031208 W US0031208 W US 0031208W WO 0139067 A1 WO0139067 A1 WO 0139067A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
computers
providing
interactive game
game
user
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/US2000/031208
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Kent D. Mar
Ravindra Roberts
Darrell Hiraoka
Original Assignee
Virtualgiveaway Corporation
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to US44901799A priority Critical
Priority to US09/449,017 priority
Application filed by Virtualgiveaway Corporation filed Critical Virtualgiveaway Corporation
Publication of WO2001039067A1 publication Critical patent/WO2001039067A1/en

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Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06QDATA PROCESSING SYSTEMS OR METHODS, SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL, SUPERVISORY OR FORECASTING PURPOSES; SYSTEMS OR METHODS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL, SUPERVISORY OR FORECASTING PURPOSES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • G06Q30/00Commerce, e.g. shopping or e-commerce
    • G06Q30/02Marketing, e.g. market research and analysis, surveying, promotions, advertising, buyer profiling, customer management or rewards; Price estimation or determination

Abstract

The present invention provides a method and system for advertising on a network, the network including a plurality of computers. The method comprises the steps of providing a visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers (60), providing a competitive medium on the visual display (62), the competitive medium being related to an advertiser, and providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitive medium (64). Through the use of the present invention, Internet advertisers are able to utilize a new outlet for transacting business and advertising their products/services, and to increase product awareness by prolonging the amount of time that potential customers are exposed to their products. Accordingly, this new and innovative model will provide an increased return on Internet advertising investments.

Description

METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR ADVERTISING ON A NETWORK

FIELD OF INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to a network system and more specifically to a method and system for advertising on a public network such as the Internet

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Banner advertisements are extensively used on public networks such as the Internet A banner ad is a portion of a web page, typically a peripheral portion, that contains information associated with a particular adv ertiser sponsor A. banner ad can be equated with a billboard advertisement that is seen on a highway Accordingly, it is the desire of advertisers that users of the network be subjected to a prolonged exposure to their products. Consequently, a sponsor employs a banner ad with the hope that users will see the banner ad and ultimately purchase an advertised product over the public network. Purchasing of a product occurs generally if the user stays on a particular visual display or web page displaying the advertised banner ad for an extended peπod of time thereby creating a persistent awareness of the brand, content, and/or products.

Although advertisers spend a substantial amount of money on banner ads, these types of ads are typically ineffective in producing a strong return-on-mvestment ( i e an actual viewing of the advertised product by a user) Since user attention is typically focused on the content of a web page, and not on the banner advertisements presented. the user's interest is not captured by the banner advertisement Furthermore, because users are for the most part not interested in the advertisements, users may typically ignore the content of the banner ads once the user recognizes it as a form of ad\ ertisement

Consequently, given the lack of user interest in banner advertisements, it is unrealistic for an advertiser to expect this method of advertising to maximize his her ability to generate revenue therefrom Essentially, a public network such as the Internet is an interactive medium of vast economic potential that advertisers are not able to take full advantage of using banner ads because users typically ignore such ads

Accordingly, what is needed is a method of advertising on a public network that addresses the shortcomings of banner advertising on such a network. The present invention addresses such a need

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention pro\ ides a method and system for advertising on a network, the network including a plurality of computers The method composes the steps of providing a visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers, providing a competitive medium on the visual display, the competitive medium being related to an advertiser, and providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitive medium

Through the use of a method and system in accordance with the present invention, Internet advertisers are able to utilize a new outlet for transacting business and advertising their products and services. The method and system in accordance with the present invention provides a medium whereby Internet advertisers will be able to increase product awareness by prolonging the amount of time that potential customers are exposed to their products. Accordingly, this new and innovative advertising model will provide an increased return on Internet advertising investments.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Figure 1 is an example of an environment m which the method and system m accordance with the present invention may be used

Figure 2 is a flowchart of the method in accordance with the present invention Figure 3 shows a system in accordance with the host system model of the present invention. Figure 4 is a computer display screen showing a game configuration utilizing the method and system in accordance with the present invention

Figure 5 is a flowchart of the method in accordance with the host svstem model of the present invention.

Figure 6 shows a system in accordance with the application server provider model of the present invention.

Figure 7 is a flowchart of the method in accordance with the application server provider model of the present invention

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a method and system for advertising on a network The following descπption is presented to enable one of ordinary skill in the art to make and use the invention and is provided in the context of a patent application and its requirements Although the present invention has been descπbed in the context of being used with the Internet, one of ordinary skill in the art will readily recognize that the present system can be used in conjunction with any type of networking system while remaining withm the spirit and scope of the present invention Accordingly, vaπous modifications to the preferred embodiment will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art and the geneπc principles herein may be applied to other embodiments Thus, the present invention is not intended to be limited to the embodiments shown but is to be accorded the widest scope consistent with the principles and features descπbed herein Figure 1 illustrates an example of an overall environment in which the method and system m accordance with the present invention may be used This environment includes a network 50, such as the Internet, that is connected to a plurality of consumer computers 52, each of the plurality of consumer computers including a display device for displaying information Also connected to the network 50 is a plurality of information servers 54 that provide information to the network 50

The present invention is presented in the context of a preferred embodiment The preferred environment of the present invention provides an entertaining and interactive framework on a public network that transforms advertisements into interactive games m which a potential customer is rewarded for playing the game Typically the reward is cash and other pπzes By transforming advertisements into interactive games and by offeπng cash and other pπzes as dπving incentive for the potential customer to play the interactive games, advertisers maximize the actual viewing time for their advertisement

Preferably, information is provided to the consumer computers 52 via the network 50 utilizing a universal programming language An example of a universal programming language is JAVA. JAVA is a programming language designed pnmaπly for writing software on Internet Web Sites that are downloadable over the Internet to a consumer computer Furthermore, by using JAVA, a small application (called an applet) can be relayed to a consumer computer for the purpose of performing specific task(s) on the consumer computer For example, an applet that performs the task of running an interactive game is generally referred to as a gaming applet The interactive game advertisements can be vvπtten in Java and accessed through

Web pages provided by the servers When a user visits one of the Web pages provided by the servers, the Java gaming applet and the interactive game advertisements are downloaded to the user's computer through the network Once on the user's computer, the Java gaming applet executes and the user plays the interactive game Although the preferred embodiment of the method and system m accordance with the present invention contemplates using the JAVA programming language, one of ordinary skill in the art will readily recognize that a vaπety of programming languages could be utilized while remaining within the spiπt and scope of the present invention

To better understand the operation of the preferred embodiment of a system and method in accordance with the present invention, please refer now to Figure 2 Figure 2 is a flowchart of the operation in accordance with the present invention. First, in a computer network, a visual display is provided to a computer on the network, via step 60 Preferably, the visual display compπses the graphical images of a web site Next, a competitive medium related to an advertiser is provided to the computer, via step 62 Finally, at least one user of the network is provided a reward of commercial value based on the interaction with the competitive medium, via step 64

Preferably , the competitive medium utilized by the preferred embodiment of the method and system m accordance with the present invention is any medium that fosters a competition amongst network users The competitive medium of the preferred embodiment of the method and system in accordance with the present invention compπses an interactive game A.n interactive game is defined as any game requiring an interaction with a computer or similar means By playing the interactive game, the user generates a score Based on the score, the user can qualify to receive a reward ot cash or complimentary products/merchandise A wide vaπety of games and technologies that appeal to different demographic audiences with different types of skills are contemplated These games involve word association, memory recall, and other forms of visual and audio manipulation Consistent with these games is the user's direct and prolonged exposure to visual images embedded with advertising content

The direct and prolonged exposure to visual images embedded with advertising content is preferably accomplished by incorporating the advertising content withm the game itself By incorporating the advertising content withm the game, the user must view the advertising content to play the game This results in a prolonged exposure to the advertising content

Two different implementation models are contemplated for the method and system in accordance with the present invention The first model is the host system model wherein a user accesses the interactive game by logging on to a web site of a host system The second model is the Application Server Provider (ASP) model Utilizing the ASP model, the interactive game is accessed from a web site other than the host system web site.

Host System Model

For a further understanding of the host system model of the method and system in accordance with the present invention, please refer now to Figure 3 Figure 3 shows a system 100 in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the host system model of the present invention. The system 100 includes the Internet 50', a plurality of consumer computers 52', and a host system 106 The host system 106 includes a web server 108. a listener server 1 10, and a centralized database 1 12

The web server 108 is responsible for distributing a gaming applet to each of the consumer computers 52' that log on the host system web site The listener server 1 10 maintains communications between the gaming applet and the centralized database 1 12 Consequently, as the gaming applet is completing its task(s), the relevant demographic information (what the consumer looks at, what game the consumer is playing, game scores, etc ) is generated and stored m the centralized database 1 12 via the listener server 1 10

As previously stated, it is the objective of the method and system in accordance with the present invention to increase the amount of time that potential customers are exposed to advertising content, while also increasing the quality of the advertising content that potential customers are being exposed to This is accomplished by incorporating the advertising content withm the game itself To descnbe this concept in more detail, please refer to Figure 4 along with the accompanying descπption

Figure 4 is a computer display screen showing a game configuration 200 utilizing the method and system in accordance with the present invention The game configuration 200 shows a gaming portion 220, a content portion 230, and a plurality of access portions, the access portions preferably compπsing thumbnails 240 Each of the thumbnails 240 preferably relates to a specific advemser A thumbnail is a graphic link that, when activated, accesses information related to the advertising content of a specific advertiser This information is needed to successfully play the game in the gaming portion 220

Although the preferred embodiment of the host system model of the present invention discloses being utilized with a thumbnail graphic link, one of ordinary skill in the art will readily recognize that a vaπety of links could be utilized to access the information needed to successfully play the game while remaining with the spiπt and scope of the present invention

In accordance with the present invention, the gammg portion 220 is associated with a gaming applet that runs an interactive game The interactive game being run by the gammg applet initially displays advertising content related to a specific advertiser in the gammg portion 220 Consequently, in order to successfully play the interactive game being utilized by the gammg applet, some piece of missing information related to the advertising content being displayed in the gammg portion 220 must be obtained This information is obtained by associating the advertising content that is currently being displayed in the gammg portion 220 with one of the thumbnails 240 The appropπate thumbnail 240 is then activated Once the appropπate thumbnail is activated, the advertising content being displayed m the gaming portion 220 is then displayed in the content portion 230 Howe er, the advertising content that is displayed in the content portion 230 contains the needed information related to the interactive game that is being run by the gammg applet Once the information is obtained, the interactive game can be successfully played in the gaming portion 220

To further illustrate the method m accordance with the present invention, please refer now to Figure 5 Figure 5 is a flowchart of the method in accordance with the host system model of the present invention Once the web site is accessed, advertising content related to a specific advertiser is displayed in the gaming portion, via step 251 Preferably, an authentication process is completed in order to access the web site of the host system Next, the advertising content being displayed in the gaming portion is displayed in the content portion along with information needed to play the interactive game, based on a user interaction, via step 252 Preferably, this user interaction is a mouse click of the thumbnail of the specific advertiser The interactive game is then successfully played in the gammg portion using the information obtained from the content portion, via step 253 Finally, once the interactive game is completed, relevant information (the specific advertising content viewed by the consumer, what game was played, game scores, etc.) is stored in the centralized database, via step 254

Although the preferred embodiment of the host system model of the present invention discloses the above outlined game configuration 200, one of ordinary skill in the art will readily recognize that a vaπety of configurations could be utilized while remaining with the spiπt and scope of the present invention

ASP Model

While the host system model is implemented wherein the user directly access the web site of the host system to play the interactive game, the ASP model is implemented wherein the user can play the interactive game from a web site other than the host svstem web site Please refer now to Figure 6 Figure 6 shows a system 300 m accordance with the ASP model of the present invention The system 300 includes the Internet 50", a plurality of consumer computers 52", and the host system 106' The Internet 50" includes a web site 325 wherein the web site 325 includes a visual link 327 to the gam g applet of the host system 106'

Utilizing the ASP model, the gam g applet of the host system, along ith its related infrastructure, can be accessed from any web site other than the home system web site via a link from the web site to the gaming applet of the home system Preferably, this link is a window or similar visual means that identifies itself as a link to the host system Accordingly, the interactive game can be played once the link is accessed To further descnbe the ASP model of the method in accordance with the present invention, please refer to Figure 7 Figure 7 is a flowchart of the method in accordance with the ASP model of the present invention First, a web site that includes a link to the host system is accessed, ia step 351 Next, the link is accessed, via step 352 A game configuration is then displaved. v la step 353 Next, advertising content related to a specific advertiser is displayed in the gammg portion of the game configuration, via step 354 Next, the advertising content being displayed in the gaming portion is displayed m the content portion along with information needed to play the interactive game, based on a user interaction, via step 355 Preferably, this user interaction is a mouse click of the

10 thumbnail of the specific advertiser The interacti e game is then successfully played in the gammg portion using the information obtained from the content portion, via step 356 Finally, once the interactive game is completed, relevant information (the specific advertising content viewed by the consumer, what game was played, game scores, etc.) is stored in the centralized database, via step 357.

15 As previously mentioned, a wide vaπety of interactive games and technologies that appeal to different demographic audiences with different types of skills are contemplated. These games preferably involve word association, memory recall, and other forms of visual and audio manipulation. Two such games that are contemplated are the coordinate game and the puzzle game.

20

The Coordinate Game

In the coordinate game, advertising content is initially displayed in the gammg portion 220 of the game configuration 200 of Figure 4 The user then mentally associates the advertising content in the gammg portion with the appropπate thumbnail

T The thumbnail is then activ ated Once the appropπate thumbnail is activated, the advertising content being displayed in the gammg portion 220. is displayed m the content portion 230 along with information need to play the game This information comprises x and y coordinates of at least two points After recording this information either mentally or by wπting it down, the user is now ready to begin playing the coordinate game 30 The coordinate game is played by moving the cursor, via a mouse or similar device, to different locations of the advertising content that is being displayed in the gaming portion 220 Every location withm the gaming portion 220 has a coπespondmg x and y coordinate value that is based on the cursor position within the gaming portion 220 As fast as possible, the user must move the cursor to the respective coordinates of each of the least two points and mouse click each point once it is located Once the user has mouse clicked each of the at least two points, a timer records the amount of time that was required for the user to finish the game The user s time is then displayed and stored in the centralized database

The Puzzle Game In the puzzle game, advertising content is initially displayed m the gammg portion 220 of the game configuration 200 of Figure 4 However, the advertising content is displayed in a mixed puzzle format. What is meant by a mixed puzzle format is a format m which the advertising content compπses a pixelated image, the pixelated image compπsmg a plurality of engaging, equally sized pieces that are assembled into an arrangement The pixelated image is subsequently shuffled and displayed in a mixed arrangement.

The user then mentally associates the pixelated image displayed in the gammg portion 220 with the appropπate thumbnail The thumbnail is then activated Once the appropnate thumbnail is activated, the pixelated image being displaved in the gam g portion 220, is displayed m a solved format m the content portion 230 The user is now ready to begin playing the puzzle game

To play the puzzle game, the user must solve the puzzle by using a pointing device such as a mouse to appropπately reconfigure the equally sized pieces of pixelated image m the gaming portion Once the user has solved the puzzle, a timer records the amount of time that was required for the user to solve the puzzle The user's time is then displayed and stored in the centralized database

Although the preferred embodiment of the present invention discloses the abov e- mentioned coordinate and puzzle games, one of ordinary skill in the art will readily recognize that a vaπety of games can be utilized while remaining withm the spirit and scope of the present invention

By playing either the coordinate game or the puzzle game, user's are rewarded with cash and merchandise based upon (1) finishing the game within a predetermined amount of time or (2) having the fastest time of every user playing the game within a predetermined time frame (l e every 24 hours, the user with the fastest time is awarded a cash pπze) Although the present invention is descπbed as being utilized m com unction with interactive games that use time as a competitive medium, one of ordinary skill in the art will readily recognize that a vaπety of interactive games using a vaπety of competitive mediums could be utilized while remaining withm the spiπt and scope of the present in ention By employing the method and system of the present invention, users will nave a prolonged exposure to advertising content While playing the interactive game, the user must make four mental associations with the advertising content These are

1) identifying the advertising content being displayed in gammg portion,

2) associating the advertising content being displayed with the access portion (thumbnail) of the specific advertiser,

3) viewing the advertising content m the content portion m order to obtain the information needed to the play the interactive game, and

4) viewing the advertising content while playing the interactive game Accordingly, product advertisers can pay to advertise their respective products on a "per view" basis What is meant by a "per view" basis is that the product advertiser can be charged a predetermined amount each time their respectiv e advertisement is accessed For example, each time the advertising content of a specific advertiser is activated m either the gaming portion or the access portion, the specific advertiser would be charged a predetermined amount By paying to advertise on a "per view" basis advertisers are virtually guaranteed a return on their advertising investment (the return on their advertising investment being the actual viewing of their respective product) because if their product is not viewed, no investment is ultimately made

Through the use of a method and system in accordance ith the present invention, Internet advertisers are able to utilize a new outlet for transacting business and advertising their products and services The method and system in accordance with the present invention provides a medium whereby Internet advertisers will be able to increase product awareness by prolonging the amount of time that potential customers are exposed to their products Accordingly, this new and innovative advertising model will provide an increased return on Internet advertising investments

Although the present invention has been described in accordance with the embodiments shown, one of ordinary skill m the art w ill readily recognize that there could be vanations to the embodiments and those vaπations would be within the spiπt and scope of the present invention Accordingly, many modifications may be made by one of ordinary skill m the art without departing from the spirit and scope of the appended claims

Claims

What is claimed is
1 A. method for adv ertising on a net oik. the netw ork including a plurality of computers, the method comprising the steps of a) providing a visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers, b) providing a competitive medium on the visual display, the competitive medium being related to an advertiser, and c) providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitive medium
2 The method of claim 1 wherein the visual display compπses a display of a web site
3 The method of claim 1 wherein the competitive medium compπses an interactive game.
4 The method of claim 3 wherein the reward providing step (c) compπses
(cl) allowing for the initiating of the interactive game in a gammg portion, (c2) displaying a first advertising content in the gaming portion. (c3) displaying a second advertising content in a content portion based on an interaction with at least one visual link of an access portion, the second advertising content compπsmg the first advertising content and information related to the interactive game.
(c4) allowing for the playing of the mteractiv e game using the information related to the interactive game, and
(c5) providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers upon successfully playing the interactive game
5 The method of claim 4 wherein the interactive game is run by a gammg application
6 The method of claim 1 wherein the network compπses a public net ork
The method of claim 6 wherein the public netw ork compπses the Internet
8 The method of claim 3 wherein the interactive game compπses a coordinate game
9 The method of claim 3 wherein the interactive game compπses a puzzle game
10 The method of claim 1 wherein step c) further compπses providing the at least one user a reward based on how long it takes the user to successfully play the interactive game.
1 1 The method of claim 10 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user finishing the interactive game within a predetermined period of time
12 The method of claim 10 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user having a faster time among other users playing the game withm a predetermined time peπod
13 A method for advertising on a computer network, the network including a plurality of computers, the method compπsmg the steps ot a) providing a first v isual displav to at least one of the plurality of computers, the first v isual display being based on information provided by one ot at least two information providing computers on the netw ork, the first visual display including at least one visual link to the other of the at least uvo information providing computers on the network; b) accessing the other of the at least two information providing computers via an interaction with the at least one visual link; c) allowing the other of the at least two information providing computers to provide a second visual display to the at least one of the plurality of computers, the second visual display being based on information pro ided by the other of the at least tw o information providing computers. d) providing a competitive medium on the second visual display, the competitive medium being related to an advertiser; and e) providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitive medium.
14 The method of claim 13 wherein the visual display comprises a display of a web site.
15. The method of claim 14 wherein the competitive medium comprises an interactive game.
16. The method of claim 15 wherein the reward providing step (e) compπses: (el) allowing for the initiating of the interactive game in a gammg portion; (e2) displaying a first advertising content m the gammg portion; (e3 ) displaying a second advertising content m a content portion based on an interaction with at least one visual link of an access portion, the second advertising content comprising the first adv ertising content and information related to the interactive game:
(e4) allowing for the playing of the mteractiv e game using the information related to the interactive game; and
(e5 ) providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers upon successfully playing the interactiv e game
17. The method of claim 16 wherein the interactive game is run by a gam g application.
18. The method of claim 13 wherein the network compnses a public network.
1 The method of claim 18 wherein the public netw ork compπses the
Internet
20. The method of claim 15 wherein the interactive game comprises a coordinate game.
1 The method of claim 15 wherein the interactive game comprises a puzzle game
22. The method of claim 13 wherein step e) further comprises providing the at least one user a reward based on how long it takes the user to successfully play the interactive game.
23. The method of claim 22 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user finishing the interactive game within a predetermined period of time.
24. The method of claim 22 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user having a faster time among other users playing the game withm a predetermined time peπod
25. A system for advertising on a network, the network including a plurality of computers, the system comprising: means for providing a visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers. means for providing a competitive medium on the visual display, the competitive medium being related to an advertiser: and means for providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitive medium.
26. The system of claim 25 wherein the visual display compπses a display of a web site
" The svstem of claim 25 herein the competitive medium comprises an interactiv e game
2S The system of claim 27 w herein the means for providing a reward of commercial value compπses: means for allowing for the initiating of the interactive game in a gammg portion, means for displaying a first advertising content in the gammg portion, means for displaying a second advertising content in a content portion based on an interaction with at least one visual link of an access portion, the second advertising content compπsmg the first advertising content and information related to the interactive game; means for allowing for the playing of the interactive game using the information related to the interactive game; and means for providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers upon successfully playing the interactive game.
29 The system of claim 28 wherein the interactive game is run by a gaming application
30. The system of claim 25 wherein the network compπses a public network.
31 The system of claim 30 wherein the public network comprises the Internet.
32 The system of claim 27 wherein the interactive game comprises a coordinate game.
33. The system of claim 27 wherein the interactive game compπses a puzzle game.
34. The system of claim 25 wherein the means for providing a reward of commercial value further comprises means for providing the at least one user a reward based on how long it takes the user to successfully piay the interactive game
35. The system of claim 34 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user finishing the interactive game within a predetermined period of time.
36. The system of claim 34 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user having a faster time among other users playing the game withm a predetermined time period.
37. The system of claim 29 wherein the means for providing a visual display further comprises at least one information providing computer, the at least one information providing computer comprising: a web server, the web server including the gaming application; a centralized database; and a listener server, the listener server being capable of maintaining communication between the gaming application and the centralized database wherein information related to the interaction is stored in the centralized database.
38. A system for advertising on a computer network, the network including a plurality of computers, the system compπsing: means for providing a first visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers, the first visual display being based on information provided by one of at least two information providing computers on the network, the first visual display including at least one visual link to the other of the at least two information providing computers on the network; means for accessing the other of the at least two information providing computers via an interaction with the at least one visual link; means for allowing the other of the at least two information providing computers to provide a second visual display to the at least one of the plurality of computers, the second v isual display being based on information provided by the other of the at least two information providing computers. means for pro iding a competitiv e medium on the second v isual display, the competitive medium being related to an adv ertiser, and means for providing a reward of commercial alue to at least one user ol at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitive medium
39 The system of claim 38 wherein each of the first and second visual displays compπse a display of a web site
40 The system of claim 38 wherein the competitive medium comprises an interactive game.
41. The system of claim 40 wherein the means for providing a reward of commercial value compnses. means for allowing for the initiating of the interactive game in a gaming portion, means for displaying a first advertising content in the gammg portion, means for displaying a second advertising content m a content portion based on an interaction with at least one v isual link of an access portion, the second advertising content comprising the first advertising content and information related to the interactiv e game, means for allowing for the playing of the interactive game using the information related to the interactive game, and means for prov iding a reward of commercial value to at least one user ot at least one of the plurality of computers upon successfully playing the interactive game
42 The system of claim 41 wherein the interactive game is run bv a gammg application
43 The system of claim 38 wherein the network compπses a public network
44. The system of claim 43 wherein the public network compπses the Internet
45 The system of claim 40 wherein the interactive game comprises a coordinate game
46 The system of claim 40 wherein the interactive game compnses a puzzle game
47 The system of claim 38 wherein the means for providing a reward of commercial value further compπses means for providing the at least one user a reward based on how long it takes the user to successfully play the interactive game.
48. The system of claim 47 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user finishing the interactive game within a predetermined period of time.
49. The system of claim 47 wherein the reward is provided based upon the at least one user having a faster time among other users playing the game within a predetermined time period.
50 The system of claim 42 wherein the other of the at least two information providing computers comprises' a web server, the web server including the gammg application; a centralized database, and a listener server, the listener server being capable of maintaining communication betw een the gammg application and the centralized database wherein information related to the interaction is stored in the centralized database
5 1 . A computer readable medium containing program instructions for advertising on a network, the network including a plurality of computers, the program instructions for: a) providing a visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers, b) providing a competitive medium on the visual display, the competitive medium being related to an advertiser, and c) prov iding a reward of commercial v alue to at least one user of at least one of the plurality ot computers based on an interaction with the competiti e medium
52 A computer readable medium containing program instructions for adv ertising on a computer network, the network including a plurality of computers, the program instructions for a) providing a first visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers, the first visual display being based on information provided by one of at least two information providing computers on the network, the first visual display including at least one visual link to the other of the at least two information providing computers on the network, b) accessing the other of the at least two information providing computers via an interaction with the at least one visual link, c) allowing the other of the at least two information providing computers to provide a second visual display to the at least one of the plurality of computers, the second visual display being based on information provided by the other of the at least two information providing computers, d) providing a competitive medium on the second visual display, the competitive medium being related to an advertiser, and e) providing a reward of commercial value to at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers based on an interaction with the competitiv e medium
53 A. method for permitting an advertiser to pay for ad ertising on a network, the network including a plurality of computers, the method comprising the steps of a) providing a visual display to at least one of the plurality of computers, the visual display compπsmg a gaming portion, a content portion and an access portion, the access portion compπsing at least one visual link, b) providing a competitive medium on the visual display, the competitive medium being related to the advertiser; and c) allowing the advertiser to pay for advertising based at least on interaction with the competitive medium bv at least one user of at least one of the plurality of computers
54 The method of claim 53 wherein the interactive medium compnses an interactive game
55 The method of claim 54 wherein the advertiser is permitted to pay a predetermined amount for the at least one user interaction
PCT/US2000/031208 1999-11-24 2000-11-13 Method and system for advertising on a network WO2001039067A1 (en)

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US09/449,017 1999-11-24

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JP2001540661A JP2003529093A (en) 1999-11-24 2000-11-13 The method and system of advertising on the network
AU14875/01A AU1487501A (en) 1999-11-24 2000-11-13 Method and system for advertising on a network

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JP2003529093A (en) 2003-09-30

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