My first job back in 1998 was as an Interactive Designer and I’ve always believed the real power of the web over traditional media is interactivity. Video has remained a medium that is difficult to make interactive. It costs a lot of money to develop even linear video content, so non-linear interactive video could be exponentially more costly.

There have been a few notable attempts over the years at developing interactive video. Remember that viral from Poweraid which had Paul O’Connell shouting your name at you because you were not fit enough.

A rather innovative video viral was released earlier this year by TippEx; a brand that you wouldn’t expect to be at the cutting edge of new media. Does anyone still use the stuff? This viral begins as just another video on the YouTube platform, but at the end of the initial video sequence, interactivity is built in that leads to a level of deep integration with YouTube that I certainly haven’t seen before. Check it out here:

The video has received nearly 14 million views in just four months, thanks to its inherently addictive nature and the large amount of comment it received online. I came across this particular viral through a recent Mashable article The 10 Most Innovative Viral Video Ads of 2010. If you have a little time on your hands head down nostalgia lane and see what The Times considered were the Top Ten Viral Ad Campaigns in 2007.

Google owns YouTube and also owns AdMob – a company that provides interactive video ads on iPhone and Android smart phones. So expect even more commercialisation of interactive video over the coming months. In other words, watch this space…