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Google's Latest Ad Venue: Web Feeds

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NEW YORK Google is continuing its quest to place ads in all manner of media, acquiring Web feed technology company Feedburner.

Through the acquisition, Google adds a resource that claims to manage more than 430,000 publishers and push over 730,000 content feeds to users.

Combined with its base of thousands of AdSense publishers and an estimated 800,000 AdWords advertisers, Google sees an opportunity to make Web feeds a lucrative new ad outlet as content resides not just on Web pages, but within data piped directly to consumers.

"It's almost an ideal fit," said Susan Wojcicki, vp of product management at Google, on a conference call. "We're both trying to provide the same kinds of things to the marketplace."

Google is rushing to expand its ad reach from search results pages to all types of media, including banner ads, video, newspapers, radio and TV.

Wojcicki said Feedburner was attractive not just for its ad capabilities, but the additional services it has, like feed analytics. "A lot of the value we can provide is by integrating deeply together," she said.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Feedburner is based in Chicago and has 30 employees.

By acquiring Feedburner, Google is tacitly admitting its own efforts at feed advertising have failed. It began inserting text ads into RSS feeds two years ago.