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Quick Hits: The Future of Outdoor Advertising


Brief scrutiny of today's headlines


Retina-scanning billboards and personalized advertisements are standard fare in science fiction movies. Reality, it appears, isn't far behind.

Lamar Advertising
(LAMR) operates in the outdoor advertising space, competing with Clear Channel (CCU) and CBS Outdoor (CBS) for the fleeting attention of American motorists. A few years ago, Lamar created a network of digital billboards that rotate ad displays like jumbotrons at sports arenas.

Lamar is careful not to cycle through messages too frequently or run streaming video that might distract passing drivers; it's already battling lawmakers over safety concerns.

But rotating ads pose no threat to pedestrian traffic. Any concerns could be easily assuaged if cities just embraced the future and built high-speed moving sidewalks reminiscent of Robert Heinlein's 1940 short story, The Roads Must Roll.

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