Differing Attitudes to Outdoor Digital Signage

Posted by: Richard Williams | Posted on: | 0 Comments

While the rapid growth of digital out of home in Europe is following very closely behind the digital signage industry in America, one thing that differs greatly between the two markets is the attitudes people have regarding the use of outdoor screens.

In the USA, digital billboards along roadsides have been banned in several cities, while other cities have moratoriums in place preventing new installs until the safety and use of the signs has been studied.

Critics of outdoor digital signs suggest the displays, which change images every few seconds, are nothing more than ‘televisions on sticks’ and pose a safety hazard and distraction to road users.

In Europe, however, the attitudes to outdoor advertising are far different. There are few, if any action groups opposed to installations of outdoor digital signage, and nowhere have they been banned, with some of the largest screens even erected next to fast moving motorways and autoroutes.

And, according to a new report by CBS Outdoor, entitled: Europe on the Move, most Europeans welcome seeing outdoor screens, when they are travelling.

The report, based on research conducted in Britain, Spain, Ireland, the Netherlands, Italy and France, discovered that Europeans, actually welcome digital billboards as something to do whilst commuting.

The report found similarities amongst those that commuted on the same forms of transport were more similar than those who lived in the same country.  On the results of the survey, CBS Outdoor suggested that in a modern technological world of text messaging and smart phones, people found it difficult to sit still and do nothing, and after listening to music, reading outdoor digital signage as they passed, was one of the main activities.

Of course, these differing attitudes may have much with the prevalence of public transport in Europe, with far more commuters relying on buses and trains than in the States.

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