Linked by David Adams on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:07 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes Online advertising has been a hot topic for the past week or so, with Ars Technica trying out an interesting, somewhat desperate experiment wherein they blocked access to their content for people using Adblock. Of course, if this were to become some kind of movement among publishers, it would probably just spark a technological cat-and-mouse game that would surely be reminiscent of DRM cracking or iPhone jailbreaking. But in their post-mortem, Ars states that it was a worthwhile awareness campaign, and I hope that's true. But I thought it would be a good idea to try to bring the collective OSNews brainpower together and crowdsource the idea of how to raise money for a web site in an age where advertising is increasingly un-viable.
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My Musings
by fretinator on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:36 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

Well, here goes...

1. I am a paid subscriber, so I don't see ads here (or at least not very often). However, I wouldn't mind it if ads showed up even for me. I subscribe to help the site, not to "get" anything (although a free Macbook Pro would be nice). I realize I am in the minority and paid subscriptions will never amount to much. But for me, at least, you can turn on the ads.

2. I purposely do not block ads. Even on Slashdot, where they have a checkbox I can click that will remove ads (since my karma is good), I do not check the box. However, I do sometimes use Flashblock, especially on older laptops, since Flash can quickly overload the cpu on an older device, and eat up the battery as well. Unfortunately, the heavy use of javascript on most sites is filling that role anyway!

3. All people need to realize there are only 2 ways to pay for Websites, TV, etc. Either you allow advertising, or you must have paid memberships with frequent "telethons" asking for more members. In reality, the latter option is almost extinct, as even PBS has commercials, albeit shorter and more "tastelfully" placed. Get over it, and pay those advertisers. Click and ad once in a while, too.

Now where's my Macbook so I can put OpenBSD on it ... is that wrong?

Reply Score: 2

RE: My Musings
by Kroc on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:42 UTC in reply to "My Musings"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

The fact becoming a subscriber is hidden in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying 'Beware of the Leopard' is a problem. I once was subscribed, but only because I won a subscription for that alt.OS competition.

If we’re going to have subscription, it really should be easier to attain than your average golden fleece, and have some benefits.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: My Musings
by David on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:52 UTC in reply to "RE: My Musings"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

Props for the HGTTG reference!

Reply Score: 1

RE: My Musings
by Creap on Sat 20th Mar 2010 16:31 UTC in reply to "My Musings"
Creap Member since:
2009-08-05

I have read OSNews daily for about a year and I had no idea there was such a thing as a paid subscriber.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:37 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

I blogged on this subject. http://camendesign.com/cute_but_wrong

* * *

Imagine running a restaurant where 40% of the people who came and ate didn’t pay. In a way, that’s what ad blocking is doing to us.—Ars Technica


Wrong. You are running a restaurant where the food is free, and on every table there’s a pot of leaflets advertising other restaurants. You are claiming that when people don’t walk out of your restaurant carrying those leaflets that they are stealing from you.

You are so, so wrong.

There is no signed contract I have made with anybody that means that I have to view any ads, otherwise I haven’t paid someone. Your contract is between you and your advertising agencies, there is no contract between me and them, nor you. If you give me your stuff for free, don’t complain if I then take it.

And don’t blame me if you made crappy decisions on how to run your business.

Update:

Because I’m publishing this publicly, it’s only fair that Ars Technica has the right to reply:

It’s a real shame that you didn’t comprehend my article and have instead created a strawman. I suggest you ruminate on the meaning of “in a way,” and follow that up by locating where in my argument I say anything about “stealing.”

And by the way, we’ve not made crappy decisions on how to run our business. We’ve seen more success than 99.99% of other online content entrepreneurs out there.—Ken


What I can’t understand is that if they are so successful, why is the article so riddled with blame? Your advertising is based on page-views, and those page-views are being cut off industry-wide. Don’t blame users, that’s one step short of the music industry blaming piracy, when they themselves created the need for piracy. Change your advertising model. Innovate. Never blame your customers.

For perspective, OSnews ran a story about its advertising problem in 2007. The comments make for interesting reading. My opinions have definitely changed and strengthened since then (because of the worsening of bad advertising tactics), and I believe that OSnews is, like Ars Technica, making the mistake of thinking that the current advertising model is worth defending—it’s not. I am working with OSnews to revamp their advertising.

* * *

Simply put, a model that depends upon, and assumes that page-views are the only meaningful existence of readers is broken beyond repair.

If you block our ads, you are still welcome here because your comments, and you sharing our content on social networks, and you simply being a part of OSnews and visiting is worth much, much more than a page-view. A healthy community is _not_ one that is counted by page-views.

Ars treated their readers as nothing more than ad-fodder. That their participation on the site was totally and utterly worthless because they could not directly extract cash by their presence.

I do not think of you OSnews readers, as ad-fodder. I see you as one of the most important assets this site has for its future. Treating you the same as Ars did would almost certainly destroy the wonderful community here.

I propose that, amongst other things, OSnews should have a topic for sponsored articles. Anybody who wants to put forward their product in a technical article can appear on the OSnews site like any other piece of news, except that it will be highlighted clearly that it’s sponsored, and the comments section can be used for the readers to give direct feedback to the sponsor about their product and the quality of their article. We would encourage highly technical, well written articles that could not be found elsewhere in the mainstream, to suit our community.

I think the community would not be too hard done by a decent, technical article about some server software (for example), if it was well written, informative and not mainstream-devoid of details considering that the community would also be able to talk about alternatives and experiences with the product in the comments as well as communicate with the vendor for questions. This would give advertisers the benefit of having an easy and powerful feedback channel.

I think the idea needs to be explained better, but it’s just one possibility to move away from banner-ads.

Another option is to ask users to donate $10 to be mentioned in the opening of the podcast. (ExtraLifeRadio did this to good success)

All ideas welcome.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Comment by Kroc
by David on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:51 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

Thanks for your comments, Kroc, and I agree with you that the restaurant analogy in the Ars article did their entire argument a great disservice. That's the problem with the intellectual "property" debate as well. If you eat at a restaurant and don't pay, or you shoplift, you are depriving someone else of a finite resource. We can argue about the morality of depriving a creator of payment for a virtual, copyable resource, but to equate it to stealing just doesn't advance the conversation.

And I hope we can all come up with a workable alternative to the advertising status quo together. The problem is, it will need to "perform" as well or better than the current system for advertisers to be tempted, failing some system to punish them for their increasing intrusiveness.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by kragil on Sat 20th Mar 2010 02:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

I don't really get your business idea. It sounds a lot like Digg ads to me.

What is the difference?

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by David on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

Isn't Digg ads only on Digg? This would be a platform that any advertiser on any ad network could use, and the advertisers wouldn't have to buy into participating. It would happen without their consent. That's the big difference.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by Kroc
by kragil on Sun 21st Mar 2010 21:57 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Kroc"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

You are right .. OK.
So Kroc has "Video For Everybody", you want "Digg Ads For Everybody" and now I wonder what Thom will come up with .. "Chromed Fiona Gilmore Ponies For Everybody" ??

BTW: I just clicked on my first ad in a very long time (when I checked Digg with ads), it was an ad for girls for a web app to find out which kind of birth control is the right one for them .. yeah I know .. but I am curious that way.
I was kinda happy to see an ad for girls, means that they didn't track me very well .. hmm .. or that I am really strange X)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by fretinator on Sat 20th Mar 2010 07:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

I hear having a rich, self-funded space tourist as a backer works well.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by Kroc
by google_ninja on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:54 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Wrong. You are running a restaurant where the food is free, and on every table there’s a pot of leaflets advertising other restaurants. You are claiming that when people don’t walk out of your restaurant carrying those leaflets that they are stealing from you.

You are so, so wrong.


It is more that you have a restoraunt where each table is a billboard, and people are walking around with giant black covers that they put on the table before they start eating.

There is no signed contract, but there is an obvious implication that you are paying for what you see with ads. Even if the site doesn't want to make money, they probably don't want to do work and provide content for free, PLUS pay for the cost of you to see it.

At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what you think or what I think. If ad blocking continues growing, we will see ad based sites continue to shut down, since most are done with the assumption of it generating SOME sort of revenue.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by righard on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:29 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
righard Member since:
2007-12-26

No putting by putting a sheet over a billboard other costumers can't see it either.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by Kroc
by Pyramid on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:15 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
Pyramid Member since:
2010-03-19

Good luck with alternatives to ads. For the time being, I can at least whitelist OSNews.

Ars Technica got a redirect into oblivion in my /etc/hosts for their utter contempt.

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by pandronic on Mon 22nd Mar 2010 07:44 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

Why do you think that you are entitled to free content? How would you feel if you did your job for free?

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by oiaohm on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 13:33 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

Why do you think that you are entitled to free content? How would you feel if you did your job for free?


I am not entitled to free content. I don't expect it.

What entitles websites to risk my privacy or the stability of my browser?

Nothing really other than a stupid believe I should have to do what ever they want. Really if we demarded that every author per article put up some private information about themselves every time. They would be screaming foul as well. Ie if you are not prepared to do it you self don't ask others todo it.

Using script based and non referral based systems is risking both. There is no requirement to make profit todo either.

Have a look around there is no a single donation button for me to give OS News or arstechina money directly for a service well done. Basically don't expect to get paid if you don't give me options to pay you.

At least by giving money directly I could be sure that some middle man has not eaten it.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by Kroc
by pandronic on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 14:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Kroc"
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

I am not entitled to free content. I don't expect it.


I was responding to the OP. He said he blacklisted the ads on Ars. That's kinda like stealing from them, especially if he's a regular reader.

What entitles websites to risk my privacy or the stability of my browser?


Their site, their rules. You are free not to visit them.

Have a look around there is no a single donation button for me to give OS News or arstechina money directly for a service well done. Basically don't expect to get paid if you don't give me options to pay you.


You can't rely on donations to run a successful business.

At least by giving money directly I could be sure that some middle man has not eaten it.


Middle men are useful. Let the site owners do what they do best - make sites, not sell ads.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by Kroc
by oiaohm on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 15:19 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by Kroc"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

"I am not entitled to free content. I don't expect it.


I was responding to the OP. He said he blacklisted the ads on Ars. That's kinda like stealing from them, especially if he's a regular reader.
"
Ars is the same by the way. I disable Adblock for them and noscript takes out all there advertisement.

Nuked by secuirty tool. It makes zero difference if I white listed art and osnews. They are not going to see the difference. Only thing adblock is removing is ugly grey boxes left behind where the ads should be.

I don't feel sorry for either. Advertisement systems that don't work with scripting disabled is not my problem. The problem is with the ads providers.


"What entitles websites to risk my privacy or the stability of my browser?


Their site, their rules. You are free not to visit them.
"
Bad logic. Their site. My browser. My computer. If anything goes are they going to pay damages? If so I will follow their rules.

Putting rules on people comes with responsibility for the damage those rules might cause.

I am perfectly allowed to protect my system. Noscript is not anti-advertisement. It is secuirty. Basically like saying you have to disable your anti-virus or firewall to visit a site. Requesting that is not a valid option.

Same with people turning on adblock to block off topic or wrong topic advertisement. Like reading article about Linux and seeing an advertisement trying to sell you Windows that you are not interested in over and over again. Yes they get a good per view rate. But a crappy click threw rate and a crappy pay from product sold. Non profitable ads basically compared to correct ads displayed.


"Have a look around there is no a single donation button for me to give OS News or arstechina money directly for a service well done. Basically don't expect to get paid if you don't give me options to pay you.


You can't rely on donations to run a successful business.
"
A donation is better than nothing. Current result they are getting nothing from people like me.

Donations and subscriptions both are good ways of getting in money.


"At least by giving money directly I could be sure that some middle man has not eaten it.


Middle men are useful. Let the site owners do what they do best - make sites, not sell ads.
"

Do they want money or not. If they want to make money more often correctly placing ads is key. Having referral systems setup to link to stories is not exactly selling ads. It making sure you extract the most income you can from the story.

More income more money. More money better stories. Basically failure to extract the most money from stories puts the site at risk in the first place.

If they don't want todo it they need to get better middle men that can make them profit.

Come on by the way. OSNews has its own store on amazon that its currently getting bugger all advertising on OSNews at least to me. Until this started up I did not know OSNews had a amazon store. I guess a lot of other people would be like that as well.

Basically as I described in another answer adding text based links on related to topic might enable them to shift more product from places like there own OSNews stores.

Saying they cannot find an thrid party advertisement firm that will do it right for them. Is a big mistake. The third party advertisement firm has no real requirement to make OS News direct sell-able items move.

If OSnews could make all the profit they need from the store why would they need thrid party.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Kroc
by twitterfire on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:59 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
twitterfire Member since:
2008-09-11

You are so, so, so very right, Kroc. If you start blaming people for ad blocking, for not clicking enough the ads, if you see them only as cash cows, and not like a community, they start hate you back and they begin to visit your site less and less.

I think that the idea of publishing sponsored articles is great. Osnews can make a decent amount of money if it's done right. Right means good articles about good techie products not publishing articles about loosing weight pills.

And why not put a nice button in the middle of the header that reads: "Help Us!". Some users are more likely to donate money than to see annoying ads.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by Kroc
by scofmb on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:00 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
scofmb Member since:
2010-02-20

The main reason there IS a community in ars is because the good content they provide... and content is not free.
So even tho they value the community, the community will ran away if they dont provide good content.

So, you say they should find a new way to get money, tbh, i bet there are GREAT minds working in google thinking the same but they still didnt come with another solution, so.. till then, its the only way they could keep paying their expenses.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:21 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Would Ars' content be any worse if they simply put up a pay wall? No, I don't think it would. Would Ars' content be any worse if the community wasn't there? Hard to say, but Ars doesn't strike me as a community website. The comments section is only just above Engadget.

"You can't view our content unless you view our ads!" is not exactly community thinking.

---

I could imagine an Ars without the community quite easily (I hide the comments by default), but I couldn't imagine an OSnews without the community; it'd be really empty.

Edited 2010-03-20 00:31 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by David on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:44 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

Would Ars' content be any worse if they simply put up a pay wall?


It would be infinitely worse, because paywalls don't work, only a hardcore few will pay, and they would make a small fraction of what they earn from ads, then swiftly go out of business.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Kroc
by Soulbender on Sat 20th Mar 2010 11:05 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Who or what is Ars Technica?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by dacloo on Sat 20th Mar 2010 11:41 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
dacloo Member since:
2006-07-22

Good comments and you're right about Ars wrong analogy.

However your suggestions at the end if the article aren't very effective. Perhaps on some sites but who cares being mentioned in a potcast? I've seen dozens of sites who offer donateware and have this section that says: "current donations: $16". That doesn't cut it. You say being innovative is the key but the problem is that no one came up with a new and effective idea yet (just 'new').

Google, Microsoft and other biggies still run on the traditional pay-per-view and pay-per-click model. THE problem is that they make most of THE money, not their publisher. When a campaign doesn't perform, they still got all their clicks and views payed. The publisher gets the bad name, not Google.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by qroon on Sat 20th Mar 2010 15:02 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
qroon Member since:
2005-10-21

I love potcast ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by Drumhellar on Sat 20th Mar 2010 19:31 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

I think you purposely misunderstood the metaphor that Ken gave, as you seemed to ignore where he wrote,

The difference, of course, is that our visitors don't pay us directly but indirectly by viewing advertising.


When I go to a restaurant, I never signed an agreement stating I will pay for my food. Such an agreement is implicit to restaurants. As such, when viewing content on a web page, it is an implicitly agreed that I will view the advertising.

I also think to dismiss the rest of the OpEd piece due to a disagreement with a minor metaphor at the beginning of it is unfair. Something about that just smells funny. I can only guess as to your motivations.

Comparing their perspective to that of the record industry, i believe, is inappropriate (more so than their metaphor). There is no direct material cost the recording industry when somebody downloads an MP3 without paying, but there is a direct material cost to a website who has it's content downloaded without the ads being viewed.

Also, the record industry is clinging to a business model that is decades old, while newer, internet-friendly business models have been demonstrated to be successful.
Ars is a child of the internet. While the business model is extremely old, it still works when people play fair.

I do disagree with the tone of most of the article. It does come off as a bit, well, blamey (That should be a word). However, being one of my favorite sites, I felt like playing devil's advocate on their behalf.

As for those who recently decided to avoid all things Ars, you are doing yourself a disservice. Ars has some of the best articles around on a wide variety of topics. The tone of this article is unfortunate, but it is not typical. To dismiss the site out of hand based on this one OpEd piece seems almost childish and petty. Ars generally has much more respect for their readership, so I can forgive them.

I'm also going to add that I don't use ad blocking software. If a website has overly intrusive advertising, I stop visiting. To just block the ads is breaking the implicit agreement mentioned above.
This is why OSNews is one of my favorites. The advertising just sits quietly at the side or top of the page, just waiting for my clicks, which they sometimes do get.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by macinnisrr on Sat 20th Mar 2010 21:28 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
macinnisrr Member since:
2009-11-12

Kroc,
I absolutely agree with your attitude concerning customers. To blame people for taking something for free after offering it for free is not only ludicrous, it's rude.

A better analogy for the current situation than a restaurant is another form of advertising: print newspapers. In the city I live in, there are at least three free newspapers which contain ads. While I can't use adblock, I'm free to write over each ad with a black marker, but that would probably have a reverse effect as I would have to look at the ad in order to do so. Nonetheless, I don't look at nine out of ten ads, critique the one that I do (I do graphic design) - which is often something I would have no interest in anyway, and maybe around 1% of the time (being generous) actually see an ad for something I would buy/use/attend if I had to. Nonetheless, nobody will stop me from reading the free papers just because I don't care about the ads they contain. The big difference is exactly that: 1)The newspaper doesn't say "ohmygod!" and 2) won't prevent me from turning the page until I acknowledge that I looked at a smiley dude. One could make the case that magazines which contain several pages of ads with little content (90% of them) do in effect prevent you from seeing what you came for before you see their ads, this is one of the huge reasons I don't buy magazines. Not to mention that most magazines contain not only pages upon pages of ads, but they also cost money!?

But I digress, the idea of ads you can rate is a good one, offering people pay options like their name on the podcast is really cool (who doesn't like being in the media, at least once in a while), and I would purchase sponsored articles if the option was there.

Ars - I never really liked you either ;-P
OSNews - Keep up the great work!!!!

Dick MacInnis

Reply Score: 1

So, here's the problem
by google_ninja on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:41 UTC
google_ninja
Member since:
2006-02-05

Ads aren't a feature, or a topic of interest. They are something that people put up with to the the content. I have yet to see an ad on the internet that entertained me enough for me to say "Man, I would love to see that ad again"

So, there are legitimate grips against internet ads: flash is buggy, slow, and has boatloads of vulnerabilities, and animated ads are incredibly distracting. For people who block ads and only target those two categories, engagement is irrelivent, building a service that just doesn't deliver irritating ads or flash ads will accomplish the same thing.

Second category are the people who don't care about whether or not you cover your costs with osnews, and will just block everything if they can. Unfortunately, out of the ad blocking populace, this makes up the majority. For these people, engagement is irrelivent, because they don't care about you, and feel entitled to the content.

If there is one thing you can count on, its that most people will only play fair if there is a chance they will get caught. There is no chance with ad blocking, there is no law against it, and it is insanely easy to do. To me, that means it is a model that is destined to die.

IMO, the way of the future is not advertising, it is pay-for content. You have an account that you put money into, when you visit a site, it automatically takes 1c or something, and you periodically re-fill that account. This won't be a viable model until the whole ad thing completely collapses, because again, people want a free lunch, so unfortunately, it may mean existing big content outlets need to die before the new wave can happen.

Reply Score: 2

RE: So, here's the problem
by Invincible Cow on Sat 20th Mar 2010 09:11 UTC in reply to "So, here's the problem"
Invincible Cow Member since:
2006-06-24

"If there is one thing you can count on, its that most people will only play fair if there is a chance they will get caught."
Oh the typical primitive moral thinking and suspiciousness. This kind of thinking is childish and counter-productive.
http://faculty.plts.edu/gpence/html/kohlberg.htm

People will often play fair if they are treated fairly. If a flash ad uses a lot of cpu, I'd say it's stealing my cpu power. They are actually using my computer without my conscent. They may even play sounds in my own home without my conscent. So I give them the boot.
People didn't start blocking ads until they became annoying. But when that happened, people started blocking all ads, not just the annoying ones.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: So, here's the problem
by google_ninja on Sat 20th Mar 2010 16:05 UTC in reply to "RE: So, here's the problem"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Using flashblock eliminates 99% of those. If people only block some ads, that will push publishers not to use them. That isn't what we are talking about, we are talking about people blocking everything.

I work for a company where we spend 40-50k/mo on bandwidth costs serving content. In our case, it is very clear who is paying that cost and why they are paying it. Some of our clients ask us to put up ads to mitigate some costs, and I can totally understand that. But regardless, running a big site costs a lot of money. If you are a site like ars, offering high quality content for free, where should that money come from?

Reply Score: 2

Ads are ok.
by m1cro on Fri 19th Mar 2010 21:55 UTC
m1cro
Member since:
2006-12-22

Ads in the form of static or unobtrusive animated GIF are fine. Ads are everywhere in real life, so one is used to it.

However, don't forget one of the most important features of modern online ads: Tracking. Tracking ads, tracking pixels, tracking cookies, tracking scripts. Google Analytics and all the rest. I find this really concerning and it's what makes a big difference from "classical" ads like those in magazines, on billboards or TV.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Ads are ok.
by David on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:01 UTC in reply to "Ads are ok."
David Member since:
1997-10-01

And the advertisers are addicted to that tracking. It's what makes online advertising so much better than print or TV advertising. I think there's some room for everyone to get what they want. Readers could get privacy and not be visually assaulted and advertisers could target their ads to the people who should see them and get the word out. It would take some technological innovation, and some way for readers to push back constructively. But I think it could happen, unless the current situation proceeds on its current path, ending up with the ignorant seeing all the ads, the savvy blocking them, publishers squeezed for revenue, and quality advertisers seeing a spiral of poor performance while scammers continue to fleece the idiots.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ads are ok.
by Kroc on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:03 UTC in reply to "Ads are ok."
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

I think the idea of letting a third party insert any old JavaScript they want into the page is insane. Where did this practice become acceptable? What happened to 'you send use a GIF file, and we’ll put that in place'?

I use NoScript because I will not have random third party JS doing what the heck it wants. That is a security disaster. If disabling third party JS kills ads, then that’s their problem, they didn’t learn how to do fallbacks properly.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Ads are ok.
by Zifre on Sun 21st Mar 2010 15:53 UTC in reply to "RE: Ads are ok."
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

I use NoScript because I will not have random third party JS doing what the heck it wants. That is a security disaster. If disabling third party JS kills ads, then that’s their problem, they didn’t learn how to do fallbacks properly.

Same here. I used to use adblock because of the insane CPU usage and slowdowns that ads would cause. Then I tried disabling JavaScript and Flash in Chrome. Everything is so much faster and I really don't mind ads anymore. I do wish there was a way to disable animated images though. Static ads and text are fine, but animated one annoy me.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Ads are ok.
by ssokolow on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:06 UTC in reply to "Ads are ok."
ssokolow Member since:
2010-01-21

Agreed. There are three major reasons I block ads:

1. My internet is troublesome enough that blocking them at the DNS level results in a small but noticeable performance gain even in Chromium. (Firefox 3.x on Linux is so sluggish that AdBlock Plus and NoScript's "block Flash/Java even on trusted sites" are required just for an acceptable experience... and I'm on an Athlon64 X2 5000+ with 4GB of RAM)

2. I dislike being tracked enough that I'm go above and beyond ad-blocking and use extensions like GoogleSharing.

3. I have a mix of Asperger's syndrome and A.D.D. which combines a teaspoon of sensory overload issues with a dash of distractibility. I generally disable GIF animation altogether (regardless of how intrusive) when browsing because it's a non-trivial focus issue for me.

EDIT: Oh yeah. And the trust issues involved in running 3rd-party JS.

Edited 2010-03-19 22:09 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Ads are ok.
by bnolsen on Sun 21st Mar 2010 13:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Ads are ok."
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

I must have your medical condition too because the big reason I killed ads in the first place was due to flashing crap. That started with animated gifs (which drove adblock), then flash (which drove flashblock) and then javascript tricks (which drove noscript). Having learned better, I turn off gif animation and have recently experimented with turning off adblock plus. The result of that experiment wasn't bad, but mostly wasted screen space, some added latency, and crazy colors.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:31 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

Each medium gets the type of ads it deserves.

In print, advertising has become an art form for many. Pick up any decent car magazine, for instance (say, the British Top Gear Magazine), and even though it's filled with advertising, it's no problem and not bothersome at all. Why? Because those ads are classy, tasteful, and in many cases, pure art. They're almost as enjoyable to read/look at as the actual articles.

It makes sense: the publishers of Top Gear Magazine UK will only pick ads that fit within the magazine. So, instead of *BLINK* *BLINK* ENLARGE YOUR PENIS *BLINK* *BLINK*, you get tasteful Aston Martin ads, beautifully photographed chronograph stuff, and so on.

In print, publishers feel responsible for the content they deliver - including the ads. As such, it gets the ads it deserves: good ones. Memorable ones. Beautiful ones.

On TV, something similar happens, but to a lesser degree. Some of the world's most beautiful advertisements are TV ones - in fact, I know of several that still send shivers down my spine, no matter how often I've seen them. Like this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEFIs3fVjTk

Again, this is because TV stations feel responsible for the content they deliver. The Netherlands has a somewhat more complicated TV/media landscape than other countries, but rest assured, especially the three national public channels are incredibly picky about what stuff they run. Again - you won't see any *BLINK* *BLINK* ENLARGE YOUR PENIS *BLINK* *BLINK* ads there.

And then there's the internet. Content is free everywhere, nobody gives a crap about their website, and publishers do not have ANY control over what ads they run on their sites. As David rightfully points out, managing your own ads is incredibly hard, because the ad market has clustered around these ad brockers - and nobody gives a damn any more about the little, independent guy.

As a result, we get the ads that we deserve: crap ones. Since we don't "care" about our ads (whether that's out of necessity or neglect is irrelevant), our ads will suck. So yes, we on the 'net get *BLINK* *BLINK* ENLARGE YOUR PENIS *BLINK* *BLINK*.

---

The only way to truly combat this is to bite the through the sour apple (there it is again, sorry) and start managing our ads on our own. Gruber managed to do it - so shouldn't we be able to do it too? I really have no idea. I have no experience with this kind of thing.

---

And no, I don't use adblock. Ads generally don't bother me - it's kind of like when one of my best friends and I play Left 4 Dead 1/2; we've become so incredibly good at the game, and we've been through the campaigns so many times, we don't even see the actual levels any more. All we distinguish between is INANIMATE PIXELS and ZOMBIE PIXELS. We ignore the former, shoot at the latter.

I wade through the internet in the same way. I ignore the ads, focus on the content. One thing I do want to say is that the person who invented those in-text ads should be executed - death by draw and quarter, preferably. On Times Square.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by tux68 on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:18 UTC in reply to "Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
tux68 Member since:
2006-10-24

I wade through the internet in the same way. I ignore the ads, focus on the content.


Then you do use an ad-blocking mechanism. Yours is programmed in meat, and mine is programmed in silicon; is there really much difference in the end?

Even if i were to disable Ad-Block, i'm never going to click through to an ad -- and apparently that's what advertisers care about. I'm just profoundly uninterested in dealing with the horrible signal-to-noise ratio in online ads. They're dead to me; that's the industries fault, not mine.

However, i'm constantly intrigued by new products I read about in articles. There, they can be placed in a larger context and compared to competitors by a competent (even if biased) author. After learning of products this and other ways, I often call up the web site of the company in question to learn more. At that point they're free to try to gee-whiz me to death if they like -- i signed up for it.

Kroc has it right, ads shouldn't be tacked on as some horrible kludge to the "content". They should _be_ content. Otherwise, people will continue to ignore those pixels, and read the others.

Cheers.

Edited 2010-03-19 23:27 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 10:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Then you do use an ad-blocking mechanism. Yours is programmed in meat, and mine is programmed in silicon; is there really much difference in the end?


There is. My "meat" ad blocker leaves the ads in place, and gives impressions. Yours, however, doesn't.

Major difference.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by pgeorgi on Sat 20th Mar 2010 12:01 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
pgeorgi Member since:
2010-02-18

There is. My "meat" ad blocker leaves the ads in place, and gives impressions. Yours, however, doesn't.

Major difference.

So a CSS based ad-blocker is okay?

Last time I looked, the chrome ad-blocker was incapable of actually removing the "tracking" aspect of ads, so I guess they were still counted (just not shown).

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by umccullough on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:25 UTC in reply to "Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

One thing I do want to say is that the person who invented those in-text ads should be executed - death by draw and quarter, preferably. On Times Square.


Spot on.

So should the publishers who (ab)use them - they must have been paid dearly for their souls.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by David on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

If we ran those in-text ads, we could probably make a couple of thousand dollars per month. Seriously. But they're horrible, and we don't run them. But I understand why some people succumb to the temptation.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by WereCatf on Sat 20th Mar 2010 04:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

I find those Google AdWords et al a much more pleasurable alternative to big, flashy animations. Especially since the links then actually are somehow related to the topic at hand whereas a random animation will be exactly that: random.

Besides, those Adwords and whatnot do not take any more screen real-estate than the actual content does. As such I just don't really have anything against them. I do block animations, large full-screen ads and all that rubbish, but if I could somehow switch to Adwords version of a site with no such animated crap I'd go for it.

As such, why not just allow your visitors to choose the type of advertising they prefer, and for the Flash/images/animations/etc category of ads use some brains and carefully select what kinds of ads you display?

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by imtiaz on Sun 21st Mar 2010 08:29 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
imtiaz Member since:
2005-07-06

If we ran those in-text ads, we could probably make a couple of thousand dollars per month. Seriously. But they're horrible, and we don't run them. But I understand why some people succumb to the temptation.


seriously David, if you do those in-text ads on OSNews then I am gone in 2-3 days. I terribly hate those in-text ads and agree with Thom.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda
by David on Sun 21st Mar 2010 17:16 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Thom_Holwerda"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

Don't worry. We decided a long time ago that those were a no-go.

Reply Score: 1

This is my take
by twitterfire on Fri 19th Mar 2010 22:44 UTC
twitterfire
Member since:
2008-09-11

My adblocker - AdThwart or AdBlock+ Element Hiding Helper for Chrome - only hides the ads. The browser downloads the ads, but CSS is modified on the fly so the ads are not actually displayed.

So everybody is happy: the webmaster gets his money, the advertiser gets screwed for being an ....., and I don't see ads. ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: This is my take
by kragil on Sat 20th Mar 2010 02:17 UTC in reply to "This is my take"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

As I understand David that will make the ads "perform bad" and eventually you will loose that advertiser and those seem to be a very finite resource atm.

Am I right?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: This is my take
by David on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:50 UTC in reply to "RE: This is my take"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

Correct; that is the bind we're in. If an ad gets a click-through rate of less than .01% or so, it's likely the advertiser will pull its business from your site. So if one or two people does it, it's probably no big deal, but if everyone did it, we would be fine for a month or two, then it would be worse than if people were using adblock.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: This is my take
by twitterfire on Sat 20th Mar 2010 11:03 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This is my take"
twitterfire Member since:
2008-09-11

Well, even if I actually see the ads, I will never click them. It happens that I don't trust any seller and I don't trust seller trying to push something on my throat. I hate all ads, tv commercials included.

If I want to buy some hardware, I read some reviews, see some benchmarks and even test it myself. I don't buy it simply because seller says it's wonderful. If I want to buy a car, I'm not buying it because of commercials, I firstly inform about cars's performances, I'm test driving it and see if I like the looks of it. If I'm buying coffee, I not buying it because some ad says I should, but because I like it's taste. If I'm buying some book, I not buying it because some stupid ads says I should buy it or because everybody reads it, I'm buying it because I either like the author or I'm interested in the subject. Or a friend says it's good, not a reviewer in a magazine or some stupid top of bestselling. I'll always trust a friend over a reviewer who may be interested in writing a good review.

Those are my rights as a consumer and I'll always act like that. I'm presuming I'm not the only one.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: This is my take
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 11:12 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This is my take"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

If I want to buy some hardware, I read some reviews, see some benchmarks and even test it myself. I don't buy it simply because seller says it's wonderful. If I want to buy a car, I'm not buying it because of commercials


That's not the point. An ad's goal is not to make you run out and buy something. An ad's goal is to make sure the product in question is on your mind when you decide to buy something.

And whether an ad is good or bad - it has been proven to work - on everyone. Even those saying they are not influenced by ads. You don't have a choice, it's a subconscious thing.

Basic psychology, actually. Well-understood and scientifically sound concepts.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: This is my take
by smashIt on Sat 20th Mar 2010 17:40 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This is my take"
smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

And whether an ad is good or bad - it has been proven to work - on everyone. Even those saying they are not influenced by ads. You don't have a choice, it's a subconscious thing.

Basic psychology, actually. Well-understood and scientifically sound concepts.


well, they never tested me with their basic psychology ;)

the only thing you achieve with ads is that i don't even consider your product

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: This is my take
by Bobthearch on Sat 20th Mar 2010 21:56 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: This is my take"
Bobthearch Member since:
2006-01-27

I call B.S.

the only thing you achieve with ads is that i don't even consider your product


So exactly what brand of car do you drive that never, ever advertises?

;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: This is my take
by smashIt on Sat 20th Mar 2010 22:18 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: This is my take"
smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

mazda
and i can't even remember the last time i saw an ad from them ;)

Reply Score: 2

typo
by aargh on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:08 UTC
aargh
Member since:
2009-10-12

a far amount => a fair amount

Reply Score: 1

Amazon Store
by Cody Evans on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:19 UTC
Cody Evans
Member since:
2009-08-14

If I remember right, doesn't OSNews have a Amazon Store thing? If that link was placed somewhere visible on the site, more people might use it...

Reply Score: 1

RE: Amazon Store
by Cody Evans on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:12 UTC in reply to "Amazon Store"
Cody Evans Member since:
2009-08-14

In reply to my previous comment, I just now noticed the "Shopping" button on the navigation bar between "News Archive" and "Topics"... I never realized that page was there...

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Amazon Store
by David on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:53 UTC in reply to "RE: Amazon Store"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

It's kind of new, and it's still a little crummy looking. The Amazon link is actually a great way for us to earn money. We get a kickback of up to 6% on Amazon orders. (higher for books, more like 1% for big electronics). As it is now, we make $30-40 a month from Amazon, but if people using adblock made a point of using the amazon link, and they shop there from time to time, it would probably make up for the lost ad revenue, and we wouldn't have to ask for direct handouts:

http://amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect-home/osnews-20

(bookmark it!)

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Amazon Store
by compuda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 07:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Amazon Store"
compuda Member since:
2010-03-12

Do you think you could set up a .co.uk one for us in Europe to be able to use?

Reply Score: 1

tinfoil hat
by n.l.o on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:35 UTC
n.l.o
Member since:
2009-09-14

I use privoxy combined with the Adblock Plus, Ghostery, Taco, Noscript, BetterPrivacy, Dephormation and RefControl add-ons for Firefox.

If any site I visit won't work with these things enabled then I just won't ever visit that site again.

Reply Score: 1

OSnews: The new deal
by kragil on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:46 UTC
kragil
Member since:
2006-01-04

I will disable Adblock+ as long as ads stay non-flashy and static.

I would even be OK with scripts that disable content like it was on Ars when Adblock is active.

As long as the ads don't disturb my reading I am fine with them, but if I have decide between flashy moving ads and more content and no ads and less content I will chose less content.

Reply Score: 2

RE: OSnews: The new deal
by Kroc on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:00 UTC in reply to "OSnews: The new deal"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

The problem is, as David was elaborating on in the article, that the choice of which ads appear, and how annoying they are is being prized out of site owner's hands by pushy publishers that are seeing lower returns.

Brokering our own banners would be a lot of work. Sites that do this may even run an entire sales/advertising department to ensure that the slots are being sold. It's a full time job, we can't do that as volunteers.

Ads by the deck and fusion might improve the situation, but it's still filling a banner-shaped hole that doesn't provide anything of _interest_ to the reader. Pretty and well designed does not exactly mean interesting, because a banner ad will always be just a banner ad. A billboard ad in the street is not as engaging as a technology review in the paper.

We need <s>advertising</s> income methods that revolve around content that OSnews readers can feel a part of. Either contributing to OSnews itself, or having access to sponsored content in the context of the regular news and the whole site, rather than just a section off to the side from a third party server.

Getting the sales in for something like that is going to be difficult. If anybody from the community would like to step forward and take a new approach to our sustainability to their heart then that will make the real difference. I am making slow progress with OSn5, and adding an advertising rethink to that is too much ATM.

Certainly, we'd like to bounce ideas off of users. The discussion here has been great so far, thanks everybody!

Reply Score: 1

Online economics and consumer attitudes
by Licaon_Kter on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:48 UTC
Licaon_Kter
Member since:
2010-03-19

my 2 points shared by others too:
1. Online economics and consumer attitudes: http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2010/The-economics-of-online-new... ( just peruse it and look at the pie charts )
2. "Those who use Adblock are mostly power users. And they know how to use social media tools, have many friends on facebook and twitter, digg and the other sites. They are the ones who popularize and forward the content, they are evangelists, they are "the early adopters". These are some of the essential functions they fulfill and the reasons for which are extremely valuable for any online business that "lives" from advertisements." translated from here: http://alexblogu.com/2009/11/servicii-gratis-și-adblock/

Reply Score: 1

what aboot StackOverflow?
by akavel on Fri 19th Mar 2010 23:51 UTC
akavel
Member since:
2009-10-27

Um; I'm a bit confused why noone mentioned StackOverflow's ads yet. I'm not well aware how successful are they with their model, but it seems they are very firm about not allowing Flash & animations. So I'd personally be highly interested in reading some comments on SO's ad system in such a "case study" article like the one above ;) And did you consider contacting them? maybe there'd be even some place for cooperation, with your ideas?

Now, regarding OSnews whitelisting: when using Firefox, I'm running NoScript. And I cannot imagine disabling it. Unfortunately, AFAIK it doesn't allow whitelisting scripts based on the URL where the JS is embedded; the rules are set depending on the server the script originates from, so I can't enable OSn ads without enabling whole ad servers.
On the other side, I'm recently using a Chromium variant more and more [namely: SRWare Iron - they claim it has spyware code removed], which unfortunately doesn't support NoScript... man, how complicated this world is...

Reply Score: 1

I'm with Kroc
by AdamW on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:37 UTC
AdamW
Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm kinda with Kroc. I block ads everywhere and don't feel the tiniest shred 'guilty' for it.

I think for me it's mostly because I grew up with the internet of the early 90s, where no-one made any money off 'content' via advertising, and I subconsciously still feel like that's the internet I live on. I don't expect to make a living off any 'content' I produce on the internet, which makes me less inclined to worry if other people can't either.

I realize that if everyone was like me a lot of websites probably wouldn't exist. Alternatively, people would invent even nastier ways of pushing advertising. Fine. I can live with most of the sites on the internet dropping dead, it wouldn't fill me with pain. If sites get too aggressive about advertising, in ways I can't block, I'll just stop reading 'em. Either way, life goes on.

There's probably a way you could find to _sell_ content to me. I'm happy to buy stuff in the right context. I don't think anyone's quite come up with it on the internet yet, but hey, maybe they will.

Reply Score: 4

RE: I'm with Kroc
by Kroc on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:44 UTC in reply to "I'm with Kroc"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Imagine a World Wide Web that was a commercial invention and not an open one. Imagine HTML was binary. Imagine that you could only view a site exactly as the designers (and advertisers) dictated.

Imagine what a horrible place that would be.

The free 'Web we use has done more to boost the amount of content consumed than print and television combined. Social networking would never have taken off on a binary web. Nor would aggregation and social news sites.

Reply Score: 1

Three things cause me to adblock
by oiaohm on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:48 UTC
oiaohm
Member since:
2009-05-30

1 is the outsourcing. Why should I connect to more sites to get the content. This does slow down the process of loading the page. So making we wait longer to get to the content I want. Ie dns lookups take time.

2 Size of the ads themselves. Come on site makers think about it. At worst a TV is 50 percent ads 50 percent content. You will find I don't block text based ads. Reason simple text based ads take up less time to download than the content I want to view. Simple fact here you guys running sites don't have to pay for the uploads of ads. Us end users have to pay for the downloading in time at least at worse money. Basically think about it we are paying to view ads why should we put up with them being overly resource hungry. Some cases people are paying more to download the ads than what you are getting paid. This is not fair on the user of your site.

Remember people still are out there on dialup. Heavy resource eating ads can mean they cannot browse particular sites in a timely way.

Basically reduced the bandwidth ads require reduce the temptation to adblock. Its not like adblocking does not cause a performance hit. Currently ads are heavier than adblocking.

3 why in heck do sites with advertising want to run stuff as about:blank. Well coded sites have basically no good reason to be running stuff as about:blank. Allowing stuff to run as about:blank can sometimes exposes secuirty flaws in browsers that would not be exposed anywhere else.

Lets say for one day you mirrored all the advertising you send to users through your own servers. I think you would be shocked when you compare the number of how much your site sends and how much the advertisers try sticking down the end users throat. The rejection of ads is being caused.

Reply Score: 2

What's wrong? Privacy!
by ciaran on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:55 UTC
ciaran
Member since:
2006-11-27

I finally started using an ad blocker. Nothing to do with blocking ads, my reason was that I got sick of google, doubleclick and a bunch of other trackers getting notified about almost every page I visit.

Reply Score: 3

online advertising is dumb
by sprewell on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:56 UTC
sprewell
Member since:
2009-03-25

If you have to rely on the charity of your users, you will never get very far as a business. This is why most businesses do not simply stick out a can and leave it up to you if you want to put in some cash for your groceries or a cup of coffee. The solution for payment online is micropayments, it drives me nuts that people keep sticking with these dumb advertising models. However, since nobody has built a good micropayments system yet, there is a simple solution for a site like OS news. Commission some articles that are representative of the kind of higher-quality content you would like to pay for. Put those in a separate section to demonstrate to users what they could be paying for. Offer yearly prepaid deposits of $10+ based on how many articles the user reads. If I read 25 articles with say an average price of 20 cents, $5 is taken out of my deposit. If I read a lot more, I'll have to put in a lot more.

Obviously most of these paid articles would not be publicly available for free, though some fraction should always be free for new readers to sample. You'd essentially be creating an in-house micropayments system. Those people who feel such paid content is worth it would pay for it, I know I've paid money for an OS news subscription before. If you're unable to drum up enough good content, people won't pay. This is a simple way to test your ability to run a viable content business, instead of using some convoluted and frankly half-baked advertising schemes.

Reply Score: 1

huh?
by StychoKiller on Sat 20th Mar 2010 00:56 UTC
StychoKiller
Member since:
2005-09-20

Ads aren't the problem, Strobing ads in violent, clashing colors are!

Reply Score: 1

OK, I whitelisted OSnews.com...
by cerbie on Sat 20th Mar 2010 01:31 UTC
cerbie
Member since:
2006-01-02

Overall, my opinions are mixed.

Ultimately, I'd like to see a good solution from a better angle: the browser.

Today, browsers still act insanely retarded.

You download HTML. You should take that HTML, and, if enough time has passed, render it. Don't get and render half the HTML (which, on modern sites, barely gets to an article title), then spend time making 20 connections to get images from the site, ads, etc., and not finish parsing and rendering the main page from the URL until all that finishes. If the content I want (defined the HTML file returned by requesting a certain URL) is 20k, and it is surrounded by 300k of stuff, much of which is on other, servers, all that surrounding stuff should not be getting in the way of the main page I requested,

I'd be happy to just have more secure cookie settings, if ads did not cause pages to load very slowly, on average, which is equally a browser problem as it is a website/service problem. I generally whitelist Google's plain text ads, BTW.

If I got to a page, and could start reading the content, then things from other servers, like ads, happened to also get displayed, web ads wouldn't annoy the Hell out of me, as they do today.

Reply Score: 3

Invincible Cow Member since:
2006-06-24

Dude, you should get a real browser. Not some IE/Firefox crap.

Reply Score: 2

cerbie Member since:
2006-01-02

The only one remotely close to being able to replace Firefox is Chrome. Every other one ends up much worse than FF when up for a long time time (weeks for a single browser instance is common for me), when swap starts getting hit, or there will simply be some horrible UI issue (such as with Opera, which I keep checking out, because it is cool, but the UI is horrid). Also, IE is only used for testing purposes, and even for that, it's unresponsiveness is unnerving ;) .

Note also, that at least 50% of my browsing is done on a PIII w/ 384MB RAM, but the mentioned problems are there with ad servers just as much on much better HW.

The way they are going w/ the H264 v Theora thing, I may end up irritated with them enough to get away from FF, on entirely non-technical grounds.

Edited 2010-03-20 09:38 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Invincible Cow Member since:
2006-06-24

"such as with Opera, which I keep checking out, because it is cool, but the UI is horrid"
I know the default UI is useless but almost everything is customizable. You can make a toolbar layout like Firefox if you want to.

Reply Score: 2

cerbie Member since:
2006-01-02

It's not about toolbars.

Find as you type, with no shortcut key to start has been a killer feature for me since it was first introduced. AFAICT, Opera 10.10 (what I have) still hasn't copied that. While the functionality is there, there is no Opera interface that can compare with Noscript's popup menu. The content blocking, not allowing you see anything you can't click on, is vastly inferior to ABP, which allows you to check out every file's URL. Finally, does Opera have a way to remove obfuscation in links?

Reply Score: 2

AD Blockers
by TheIdiotThatIsMe on Sat 20th Mar 2010 01:51 UTC
TheIdiotThatIsMe
Member since:
2006-06-17

I use an AdBlocker for the majority of the internet's contents. Why? Simply because site maintainers have allowed such a ridiculous rampant mess of advertisement that the content of their sites are no longer relevant. Having said that, I do actually whitelist quite a number of sites (including OSNews).

What does it take to get whitelisted? Ads that are relevant and I'd personally find interesting (including some ones I've seen here about linux-loaded laptops, smartphones) and that I'd actually consider clicking on to get more information. Ads that are not flashy, usually a simple image or text. The minute it starts to move, it's become a distraction, and rather annoying.

If I go to a site that I initially have blocked, and am STILL served with annoying advertisements, I just don't visit again.

As was said before with magazines, many of the ads in the respectable magazines (especially some good car mags) are not only NOT ANNOYING, but a pleasure to look at. I have even seen people cut out certain ads from magazines and put them in cheap poster frames and hang them. It's all about being responsible with your advertising.

Reply Score: 2

Premium content?
by merkoth on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:26 UTC
merkoth
Member since:
2006-09-22

LWN has been doing this for ages so, why don't you guys write a few specially elaborated articles each month that require a subscription to be read? I don't know, maybe articles about web development by Kroc, maybe about UI design by Thom. But make sure to make those articles something else, fill them with your opinions and ideas. Leverage the community: If we want to take part of the discussion regarding these premium threads, we'll have to pay. Removing the ads could be a nice bonus too. If you manage to get a few bucks each month you could even use even a little to pay authors for more premium-oriented content.

So I imagine something like this: Those who come here for a handy OS-related news aggregator, get these news for free with a few ads. And those of us who come here for the discussion and in-depth articles, need to pay up. And we get an ad-free version of OSnews.

I, for one, would gladly pay for this as long as you don't charge a leg and an arm (not everyone's paychecks come in euros or dollars).

I whitelisted OSnews from AB+ a long ago, but you guys need to get your act toghether: I can't find for the life of me the subscription link!

Reply Score: 2

Change ?
by trenchsol on Sat 20th Mar 2010 03:47 UTC
trenchsol
Member since:
2006-12-07

I think that on line advertising has changed under pressure from tools like AdBlock.

Recently I've installed new version of OS and I've forgotten to install AdBlock. After some 2-3 weeks I remebered about AdBlock, but noticed that I don't miss it. It looks like the advertisers switched to less intrusive and annoying form of ads.

While I had AdBlock, I used to block any item in the page that I found annoying, no matter what it was, who put it there and for what purpose. If the ads were civilized I left them alone. If I begin to encounter intrusive content again, I will install Adblock, no doubt about it.

So, I believe that AdBlock is a good, useful tool that keeps advertisers in line.

DG

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

I see geeks promoting Firefox + Adblock as if they are saving the planet. This type of advocacy occurs more tech sites which then suffer more from poor advertising revenue. If you use Adblock then at least be wise and keep your mouth shut about it.

I don't run Adblock for the same reason I don't pirate. I like supporting the people that produce the content I appreciate.

Reply Score: 2

WorknMan
Member since:
2005-11-13

I think most readers would agree that, if you showed them ads they were actually interested in, they might just be more inclined to click on them. Doesn't that seem like a better alternative than trying to shove ads down people's throats?

But, unless I am missing something, I don't see anywhere on this site where I can go to tell you what sorts of ads I am interested in. For example, I am currently in the market for an Android phone. So if I could click on a link and tell you to show me some ads about current and upcoming Android phones, hell... I might actually click on one or two of them. And then, have those preferences follow me from site-to-site. This, IMHO, would be a much better alternative than trying to spy on users to find out what they're interested in. For Christ's sake, LET US JUST TELL YOU!!!!

This seems like such an easy problem to solve, but since the advertisers/publishers either can't or won't do so, it becomes necessary to look into other alternatives. The only other one I can personally think of is paid subscriptions. But, how do you get people to pay for content they are used to getting for free? Well, you have to do a lot more than just offer a site without ads, since many of us are using ad blockers anyway. So, I'll give you just a few suggestions here. Some may be more feasable than others, and some may be terrible ideas, but hey... I'm just brainstorming:

Bundles: As it has done with so many things, the porn industry is really leading the way on this one. Would I pay to gain access to analaddicts.com? Probably not. But if you give me access to analaddicts, hairyhoneys, asianbeaver, ideepthroat, swallowmypride, tittiesrus, and monstersofcock with the same subscription price, I would certainly consider it. This is probably the biggest key to making paid subscriptions work. Sites need to figure out how to work together and offer users a bigger bang for their buck.

Lower rates: Ok, I'm not an economics major, but to me, asking for $20 for a yearly subscription to this site is borderline insane. Ask me to pay $1 a year, and I would be much more inclined. Obviously, if every site were charging $10-$20 a year, the most that many of us could afford is maybe a couple dozen subscriptions. (And Ars wants $50 a year... are you f**king kidding me???)

Portals: This sort of ties in with the above, but if the music industry worked like most website subscription models, every artist would have their own website and you'd have to visit each one and purchase albums separately. So, why don't we have an iTunes or an Amazon music store-like service where I can just go and manage all of my website subscriptions in one place?

Customizable RSS feeds: If I could block certain topics from showing up in my RSS reader (and especially if it came as part of a bundle like I mentioned above), that would be more of an incentive for me to give somebody money.

More options for audio fiends: For me personally, this is the BIGGIE! So we've got sites that are catering to mobile users and folks who want to watch videos, but what about those of us who often find ourselves with our hands busy and our minds free, but with an mp3 player handy? Sure, there are podcasts, but they lack the ability to allow us to choose which articles we're interested in.
Why can't we get articles in audio format? Give me a list of articles, let me check the ones I want, then I click a button and have an mp3 file built for me on the fly with audio transcripts of the articles I've chosen. I don't know if it has occured to any of you 'Web 2.0' authors out there, but some of us would REALLY, REALLY like to consume content while on a treadmill or cleaning up the house!!!

Discounts for site participation: If I am a paying subscriber, and I leave a comment that gets modded up, why not give me a little discount on my subscription? Not only would this offer a huge incentive for people to participate in discussions and leave good comments, it would probably also drive up the quality of the comments that each article receives.

Time-delayed content: Paying subscribers may get exclusive content a day or so ahead of the freeloaders.

Comment recognition: Paying subscribers could elect to have their comments/replies displayed before those who have placed comments without a subscription.

User blogging: Have a section of the site where paid subscribers can post blogs that can be read by anybody visiting the site.

Well, that is just what I could think of in a few minutes. If I took more time to sit and tweak on it, I'm sure I could come up with a lot more. It seems that sites such as Ars Technica display a lot of editorial contempt for the entertainment industry for sticking with outdated business models, but don't seem to be intelligent enough to heed their own advice. There seems to me to be a lot of stuff sites can do to entice more people to pay.

Reply Score: 2

Bigger picture
by soulrebel123 on Sat 20th Mar 2010 07:56 UTC
soulrebel123
Member since:
2009-05-13

I don't think it's really relevant for society that a few websites don't profit from advertising.
The best things in life and on the internet are free. If there was no way to profit from advertising the internet would still rock. There would be less duplicated content, too.

Advertising produces no improvement at all for people's lives and it end up being a tax on consumption.
The little it does, it does it very inefficiently: for one interested person there is one thousand bothered users. It wastes bandwidth and resources too. It also messes up our subconscious.

Closing public access is however even worse: the content is there and easily deliverable to the entire world, people should not be cut out.

We haver to remember we live in a system that has defects and shortcomings and should be continually improved. This economy made perfect sense one hundred years ago, but it does not now. It's only good for physical products and services.
We are very close to have the technology needed for automatizing most of the production. People could have anything they want for free. Check out what a resource based economy would be.

I personally am an adblock user. I would not click ads if I saw them. I would not blow my money on things I don't need, so I don't want to be bothered.

As of now the only solution I see is to limit advertising by law or some technical mean to be less invasive. If everybody did it, nobody would lose money.
That or getting a real job :-)

Reply Score: 1

RE: Bigger picture
by twitterfire on Sat 20th Mar 2010 12:25 UTC in reply to "Bigger picture"
twitterfire Member since:
2008-09-11

You are basically correct. Internet used to be free. The whole concept of begging/threatening the users not to use adblock is stupid. If you choose to run a website an make money from it, that is your business, not user's. If the online ads are not making you as much money as it used it, than blame economy, blame the financial crisis, blame the ads and advertisers for being stupid, blame your business model but don't blame the user. It's not his fault you're not making as much many as you want. Try to be creative, try to be inventive.

You, as an online business, are granted a favor by the user visiting your site, you're not making him a favor for allowing him to visit your site. There are thousands of other sites out there that are close to yours in content. There are thousands of sites waiting to get your visitors and be thankful about that.

If your business model can't stand anymore, be smart and change the business model. You have no right in asking users to not use adblock or click an advertisements. Of course, you can try it but is not going to do you any good. You may loose some page hits.

In the entire Internet ecosystem -of billions- of websites I can see none of them being the only one in it's niche, nor I can see one you can't live without. Even if google.com goes bankrupt, we can live without google. Internet goes on. So why someone, besides site's owner should care about a site closing because the webmaster have chosen a lousy revenue model? There are literally thousands of other sites taking its place. It doesn't make a hole in the Internet if it disappears. We aren't left without something unique and unimaginable otherwise.

Somebody may say: "If webmaster doesn't make enough money, he may not have resources to publish enough quality content." Again - why should we care? If it's not enough quality content on a particular site, there's always on other.

The big picture is this: the entire ad based business model, it's not as good as it used to be. It even may be bad. It maybe will recover, it maybe fall further. It's nobody's fault, certainly not users. You need to be smart, inventive, ingenious and choose a business model that will pay enough in the long run. If you can't, maybe you need to find another job.

Reply Score: 3

SecretProjects
Member since:
2010-03-20

As an IT professional, with some influence on buying decisions, I am probably an ideal target for online advertising on OSNews. I have used Adblock in the past, but having read this story, I've whitelisted the site. An ad just targeted me with a geographically relevant job website, and I clicked through to see what's available. So, online ads work when they are targeted well.

In my spare time I run a specialist aviation forum, it costs me $50US a month to run which is covered through user donations. I've considered the paid subscription route, but thats a great way to kill a community. Advertising is never going to work (too specialised!) so donations is the only workable method.

Reply Score: 1

Do ads even work?
by butters on Sat 20th Mar 2010 08:38 UTC
butters
Member since:
2005-07-08

I don't recall ever buying anything that was advertised at me on a web page. That's just not how I make purchasing decisions. As I see it, if you get your search engine optimizations right, I'll find your product if and when I have a demand for it.

Ads aren't just annoying, the whole concept is arrogant and contemptuous. Nobody knows nearly as much about what I want than I do. This should come as no surprise to anyone, but yet advertisers still seem to be convinced that they know how to make my life better in some way that I wouldn't have otherwise considered.

Not bloody likely.

So if I can block ads, I will, and if I can't, I won't ever, ever click on them. Ever.

The struggle to find viable business models for digital content is contentious and non-trivial, and I don't pretend to have all the answers. But I doubt that advertising can be a sustainable answer to this problem in any conceivable form.

It stinks like some sort of Ponzi scheme where everybody is passing off their expenses to somebody else, terminating in a pool of investors that will dry up sooner or later when there aren't enough new suckers to replace those who have already given up waiting for positive returns.

Reply Score: 2

oiaohm
Member since:
2009-05-30

I still did not see 1 advertisement. Reason I have noscript running as well. Since the javascript did not run from the third party advertiser I still got zero ads. You need far better quality third party advertisers. That can at least operate when noscript is in place.

If you wonder why your are not getting click threw being on the wrong side of both adblock and noscript is kinda going to lose you a lot of people.

Good question why is there not a link on your site by you to the amazon book store that will give you kick backs without JavaScript.

People have not got this yet referral systems done well can get past noscript.

Ok you don't like google text ads. Why not design something that suits your site like maybe before news on the right hand side. With items like the amazon book store in it. Particularly if it done text based and is truly part of the page adblock cannot single it out without taking content with it.

Basically while you depend on pictures and third parties you are not going to make income from a lot of people.

Basically why should I feel sorry for you not getting money. Its your own fault. Using systems that are going to get picked off due to bad design then not having a good design to at least make some income when the bad designs get picked off. By the way everything that noscript picked off a locked down IE would have picked off as well. Same with a blind person using text mode. Ie you are losing chances to make income all over the place.

Basically stop blaming the users. They are telling you they don't want something. Its like trying to sell ice to Eskimos it is not going to happen.

Now work out what they want/will tolerate you will make money. As you even said a few people buy books you might make more money than the other system anyhow.

I really cannot work out why you have not done it.

Reply Score: 1

Random replies
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 10:21 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

Some random replies.

I) Paywall, pay-for content, whatever:

I don't like that at all. I write this nonsense because I want everyone to be able to read it - not to jiggle a few coins out of your wallet. On top of that, I'm simply not a good enough writer or a knowledgeable enough person to have people pay for what I write. I'm no Jon Stokes, I'm no Siracusa.

II) Delayed publication for non-subscribers (LWN method)

No. Again, I don't like this. For the same reasons as listed above, but also because we are a news blog/site, and news is only interesting the moment it happens - not a week later, when the paywall is lifted.

III) Internet should be free, fcuk off with your ads, I don't care about websites, internet used to be free

It's fine if you feel that way, but it does have its consequences. We're volunteers, and we're doing our best, but there's a limit as to what we can achieve. Using ad blockers indiscriminantly is your prerogative, but it can and will affect the sites you visit. If you don't care about that, then fine - but then don't come a'knockin' on site owners' doors with demands or feature requests either.

IV) ads served via JS are dangerous, they're going to eat my computer, etc.

This, for the most part, is a lame excuse. When you click on a Google link, you have no idea where that link will take you, or what JS it might execute. When you click on a link in an OSN story - same thing. People have no problems with that.

However, when it comes to ads, it's suddenly a problem? So, what, you trust random Google links, you trust the sites that we link to in stories - but no the ads? This one always felt like an excuse of convenience to me.

Again - you have every right to do it - but at the same time, I have the right to call a bullshit reason when I see one.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Random replies
by Kroc on Sat 20th Mar 2010 10:36 UTC in reply to "Random replies"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

However, when it comes to ads, it's suddenly a problem?


Because ad agencies join the dots. And let's not get into Flash cookies.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Random replies
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 10:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Random replies"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Because ad agencies join the dots.


What do you mean? I don't get this saying. All I know is that it's apparantly okay to trust random Google links and the random stuff we (and any other site) links to - but not ad agencies, which are, in fact, chosen by us too - just like the sites we link to. It's inconsistent.

And let's not get into Flash cookies.


Flash has nothing to do with ads. I block Flash too because Flash in and of itself is an inherent danger and a CPU hog. There's nothing inherently wrong with JS, just that it might possibly be used to attack your computer.

At which point I ask you the same question: what makes you trust Google, Wikipedia (random links inserted by total strangers!), OSNews, and every other site and the JS they link to - but not the ads we run? It is highly inconsistent.

Again - you have every right to, but I still believe it to be a reason of convenience.

Edited 2010-03-20 10:48 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Random replies
by Kroc on Sat 20th Mar 2010 11:36 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Random replies"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

http://www.imasuper.com/66/technology/flash-cookies-the-silent-priv...

http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2009/08/you-deleted-your-cookies-thi...

The problem, is that with ad impressions across multiple sites, they can follow you ever so closely. In the real world, it would be akin to allowing advertisers to use CCTV to check the where and when everybody goes so that they could be targeted with ads.

You're free of course to not be bothered by that, most people are not bothered about what advertisers do, or what information they give out. I just choose to utilise the ability I have to render and interpret the content that gets delivered to my computer how I please, _for a pleasant viewing experience_.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Random replies
by AdamW on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 15:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Random replies"
AdamW Member since:
2005-07-06

Thom, why are you assuming everyone trusts random Google links? I certainly don't.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Random replies
by AdamW on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 15:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Random replies"
AdamW Member since:
2005-07-06

oh, and you also seem unaware that noscript's default configuration blocks *all* javascript. Including js from the host of the site. Not just third-party js. If you want to see the js from the host, you have to whitelist it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Random replies
by oiaohm on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 23:13 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Random replies"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

oh, and you also seem unaware that noscript's default configuration blocks *all* javascript. Including js from the host of the site. Not just third-party js. If you want to see the js from the host, you have to whitelist it.


I am not unaware. This is a trust thing. You have a chance that a user running noscript will unblock your own sites scripting. Third parties forget it.

Next thing is what forms payment for advertisement requires javascript. The form is impression based advertisement (pay per view) does to see how many people really did display the ads.

Click through and pay percent of perchance only needs a referral item added to the end of url or the site it pointing to being yours.

Adblock does not take out ever pure <a href="site">name I don't know of any adblocking system that does. These also will go straight past noscript. Even better with href=site you can send the link to your site and have it bounce onto end in the process counting how many click troughs happen.

Currently lets say the advertisement company decided to cut the number of click throughs they paid you by lets say 10 percent. Would you be able to prove it and would you know. Referral systems can be more trusted reason you can place your own counter on it.

Pay per view is also only 100 percent trust-able to the site is doing it themselves. How come you can make the site require java-script to function right and user is more likely to trust you since you are providing them with the content. Not some third party they have not had the time to fully check out. Just to read a story they don't have time.

What if the issue is not just ad-blocking but the advertisement firms stealing as well. See this issue here is trust. Basically why should I keep a site running systems I know that could be used to steal from them. Quality of there methods need to improve.

Currently lot of sites are depending on just one type of impression based advertisement without out means to audit. Recommend for the lazy. Blocked by many in current market its how to lose your shirt. 2 years ago it started drying up. Sites have failed to respond to change.

Its like lets go to war and only send 1 type of forces in and bugger the other side has weapons that pick them off simply. Then complain to everyone that you lost the war because the other side had a unfair advantage. Sorry you would think a commander saying that was a idiot.

Business is war. Truly business is war. Same tactics used in war are used in business. Most important of all don't depend on a single solution. Always have multiable solutions so if Plan A fails Plan B still works. Links at end of articles to directly related bits that are for sale work be useful.

With the patent trouble starting to appear setting up a referral agreement with a company that sells full copies of patents would be a wise idea.

This is what you have to think about. With the articles I am running what people looking at it could be interested in or need to follow up with and will any of those parties pay me.

Really when you have a stack of referral pay systems setup some cases you can give them to the authors who want payment. Ie they get paid percentage what their story generates. So it will pay them to pick out valid and matching items to reference at end of article. And just like all editors jobs checking that your writers have not over stepped has to happen.

I call it lazy the day of handing you advertisement over to a third party and forget about it is basically over. Little more effort and less people will slip through cracks.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Random replies
by m1cro on Sat 20th Mar 2010 12:24 UTC in reply to "Random replies"
m1cro Member since:
2006-12-22

FOR ME, THE PROBLEM IS NOT SO MUCH SECURITY, IT'S ABOUT PRIVACY.

P.S. ALL-CAPS TODAY FOR DYNAMIC RANGE DAY:
http://productionadvice.co.uk/dynamic-range-day/

Reply Score: 1

RE: Random replies
by coreyography on Sat 20th Mar 2010 15:37 UTC in reply to "Random replies"
coreyography Member since:
2009-03-06

IV) ads served via JS are dangerous, they're going to eat my computer, etc.

This, for the most part, is a lame excuse. When you click on a Google link, you have no idea where that link will take you, or what JS it might execute. When you click on a link in an OSN story - same thing. People have no problems with that.

However, when it comes to ads, it's suddenly a problem? So, what, you trust random Google links, you trust the sites that we link to in stories - but no the ads? This one always felt like an excuse of convenience to me.


It's not "suddenly" a problem for me, since I leave NoScript on all the time. It's not 100% protection, I'm sure, but better than nothing.

I do agree that Flash is a bigger risk, though. I removed a virus from a friend's PC after he got tagged by a malicious Flash ad when visiting cnn.com. The presumptuous thing didn't wait 5 minutes before redirecting his browser and generating popups.

I only use NoScript, though, so non-script/non-Flash ads from the site I am viewing do get through. I don't mind them generally, and even click on the ones of interest. I must show appreciation that OSnews still mostly works when I have NoScript on, unlike many of the "major media" sites (I have OSn whitelisted, but one doesn't have to in order to see content).

In the end, I'm afraid I have no new ideas here. I would probably donate (where _is_ that button anyway?), but casual visitors would likely not. I'll use the shopping link next time I'm on Amazon, tho.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Random replies
by sprewell on Sat 20th Mar 2010 20:23 UTC in reply to "Random replies"
sprewell Member since:
2009-03-25

Thom, I agree with you that the current news format is not worth that much, but my conception was for a separate paid section with the higher-quality content David said he'd like to pay for. However, if you feel the news links have some value too, you could charge say a cent for every news post and make 30% of them available for free. My point is the whole site will never go behind a paywall, as you have to advertise your content. ;) However, most of the internet WILL go behind a paywall, as it's the only model that makes sense, but when it's micropayments most won't care because the amounts will be so small and the system so easy to use.

Reply Score: 1

I do love my run-ons
by cerbie on Sun 21st Mar 2010 01:50 UTC in reply to "Random replies"
cerbie Member since:
2006-01-02

When you click on a Google link, you have no idea where that link will take you, or what JS it might execute
Incorrect. It will execute no javascript, unless I have explicitly allowed it to do so. And, actually, yes, I do know exactly where that link will take me, if I'm running my preferred browser and addons (will an RDR-alike extension come out for Chrome? Chrome seems to have almost everything else, now...). I prefer not to follow obfuscated links.

However, when it comes to ads, it's suddenly a problem?
No, it's suddenly a more annoying problem. I've been to forums with looping JS in the background that eats too much CPU with enough tabs open, and sites that leak memory with their JS over time. But, it's easy to just purse my lips, and temporarily disable JS on a site for an occasional occurrence of buggy code.

Ads, however, may move windows, make new windows, change focus, replace context menus, or freeze browsers for a time (slow servers, which is also a browser coding problem, but also inefficient JS), and have managed to consistently thwart browser settings to the contrary (which is bypassed depends on the browser used, and Opera seems to be best, here), necessitating either avoidance of the content they come with, or ad-blocking. Then there's the silly ones that cover content with an ad page, so if you have JS disabled by default, you can read content, but if it is enabled by default, you've got another 5-10 seconds just to load this ad page and a skip button (Heaven forbid they get served up as fast as the site you're trying to go to).

Also, 3rd-party ads loaded from news sites that use JS have been the only vector for any malware I've recently received (no worries: either the browser didn't have a clue what to do with the file, prompting me to Google it; or, AV caught it, if on Windows). It's no wonder malware spreads as it does, since even those experiences are in the short window between a working OS install, and a fully updated and configured install.

Not all ad services are that bad, but they get on the same block list(s) as those that are. Yet, those safer ones are just as much of a privacy risk, even the security risk is reduced.

Those running a site need to have, inspect, and approve every ad, and keep it on their server(s). Drive-by ads are going to continue being a security and privacy risk. The immediately obvious problem with this model is that it all but requires clicks as the only reliable mechanism to measure anything about ads, since you could doctor page view data.

Reply Score: 2

Silly..
by Brendan on Sat 20th Mar 2010 11:43 UTC
Brendan
Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

Ever since I was born my mind has been bombarded by advertising in many different forms. Because of this my mind has adapted to ignore all adverts in any form (unless there's nudity involved - in that case I may pay attention to the nudity, but still ignore whatever message the advert was intended to contain).

Of course there's other ways to advertise. Some morons have spiders that search web pages, forums, etc for email addresses (used for spamming). Wouldn't it be deliciously ironic if most of the "things" that click on adverts are actually bots run by spammers? :-)

-Brendan

Reply Score: 1

RE: Silly..
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 12:19 UTC in reply to "Silly.."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Ever since I was born my mind has been bombarded by advertising in many different forms. Because of this my mind has adapted to ignore all adverts in any form


In your dreams. You are always influenced by advertising - whether you like it or not. You can't turn off your brain. The impulses will reach the right place, whether you know it or not.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Silly..
by Brendan on Sat 20th Mar 2010 13:31 UTC in reply to "RE: Silly.."
Brendan Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

In your dreams. You are always influenced by advertising - whether you like it or not. You can't turn off your brain. The impulses will reach the right place, whether you know it or not.


An interesting theory - can you prove it?

In any test it'd be too easy for me to cheat, so I don't expect you to believe me. Instead, test yourself - you've been to OSnews at least twice (once to post your comment and once to read my reply). There's about 6 adverts on each page, so this means you've "seen" up to 12 adverts. How many of them do you remember?

-Brendan

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Silly..
by Thom_Holwerda on Sat 20th Mar 2010 15:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Silly.."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

How many of them do you remember?


None, since I have the subscriber ad-free version.

However, you're missing the point. You're thinking about individual ads. That's not what matters.

It's the Coca Cola mentality. It's not Coke's idea to have you remember each and every ad they run. Coke's goal, decades ago, was to ensure that every person in the world would be confronted with Coke - either merely thinking of Coke or actually encountering merchandise - every x minutes.

If you visit OSNews every day, and you see an ad for a cleaning product every day for a week on end, you'll remember that brand (subconsciously) the next time you go out to buy a cleaning product.

This has been tested LIKE CRAZY in psychology, and confirmed over and over and over again. This is not some opinion or pseudo-science - it's fact. A simple starting point:

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=advertising&hl=en&btnG=Search&a...

On a broader note: people have this tendency to believe they're special, unique, different. The truth is, however, that human behaviour is remarkably well-studied and well-documented, and even a few years of psychology at a decent university will teach you that no, people are not snowflakes.

You are vulnerable to advertising just as much as everybody else (on average), and nobody is immune to it. I know many like to think they are above advertising or above certain simple psychological principles - but you're not.

People are predictable, and as soon as you let go of this idealistic nonsense that people are snowflakes, and if you pay just a little bit attention, you'll soon discover that you can predict the behaviour of people around you to a startling degree of accuracy.

I have not been surprised by anyone since I can remember.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Silly..
by Brendan on Sun 21st Mar 2010 04:32 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Silly.."
Brendan Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

"How many of them do you remember?


None, since I have the subscriber ad-free version.
"

Sorry, I should've guessed.

Is OSNews the only internet site (with adverts) that you see regularly? Perhaps you might remember some adverts you saw on a different internet site? Can I assume you would've said so if you did remember them?

If you visit OSNews every day, and you see an ad for a cleaning product every day for a week on end, you'll remember that brand (subconsciously) the next time you go out to buy a cleaning product.


For free-to-air TV and radio, you're (usually) listening to the advert/s while you wait for the content. For most internet sites you're not waiting for anything and you can skip directly to the content. The advert gets skipped, unread. If the advert is disguised as content then it might be read, but the reaction in this case is more likely to be disgust than an increased chance of purchasing anything.

This has been tested LIKE CRAZY in psychology, and confirmed over and over and over again. This is not some opinion or pseudo-science - it's fact. A simple starting point:

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=advertising&hl=en&btnG=...


Pigs do fly. It's a fact. Here's a starting point: "google.com".

See how my "pigs fly" comment doesn't qualify as proof of anything? Maybe the reason I didn't bother to find anything that actually does support my "pigs fly" argument is because I honestly don't believe my own "pigs fly" argument.

Can you find anything to support your "easily ignored adverts aren't ignored" argument? For example, some sort of research that doesn't focus on "much less likely to be ignored" adverts (e.g. the free-to-air TV and radio adverts that people usually listen to while waiting for the content)? Can I assume you aren't willing to spend the time to support your argument because you're not sure that you believe it yourself?

On a broader note: people have this tendency to believe they're special, unique, different.


On a less broad note; if I assumed I was unique my "how many adverts do you remember" test wouldn't have made any sense.

On the home page it takes me less than 2 seconds to scan the headlines and click on any articles I found interesting. In the articles themselves it takes me far less time to find and start reading the content. The adverts on OSNews don't stand out and aren't intrusive; and they're never read (except for today, where I deliberately looked for and read them).

While writing this reply I deliberately looked for the adverts. I found them at the very bottom of the page - reply text box on the left, column of news on the right that extends far below the text box, with 4 adverts below that. I don't scroll down that far while using the text box.

-Brendan

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Silly..
by alec on Sat 20th Mar 2010 16:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Silly.."
alec Member since:
2005-09-23

It has been proven beyond reasonable doubt by plenty of serious research.

One can make a conscious effort to filter or resist advertising (or, for that matter, any propaganda in general). I, for one, try not to buy anything advertised to me, to an extent possible.

But on the subconscious level, the deed is done. We are all human.

Reply Score: 1

Ads are part of the web
by mlankton on Sat 20th Mar 2010 13:34 UTC
mlankton
Member since:
2009-06-11

If I notice an ad it is because I am either interested in the ad, or it is extraordinarily intrusive. Legitimate websites do not use intrusive advertising, therefore obnoxious advertising is an instant notification that the site I have landed on could not possibly have anything for me and I exit.

The ad blocking mentality is typical of a society where the young generation feels entitled to everything without penalty, or on their own terms. Have fun learning that the real world could care less about "your" terms, young people. Grow up. Ad blocking borders on piracy.

Reply Score: 1

Subversive point of view
by alec on Sat 20th Mar 2010 16:06 UTC
alec
Member since:
2005-09-23

The comments are pretty sad, although nothing new. Most people today are so brainwashed that they consider the never-ending stream of excrement poured down on them as something entirely normal or legitimate, if not outright enjoyable. The "progressive" opinion concedes that it's OK to be urinated upon as long as the shit is not too smelly.

Consider me a commie, but I don't own a TV and don't patronize web sites that serve ads. I can look at a link or go for an occasional foray into sites like OSNews, but by and large, all of these are ipso facto tainted. I gladly support the sites that are principled. In Europe I've met plenty of similar-minded people, but here in US, admission of not owning a TV set would only result in one being denounced to the Un-American Activities Committee, or whatever it's called these days. And come to think of it - for a good reason.

Cheers.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Subversive point of view
by twitterfire on Sat 20th Mar 2010 17:31 UTC in reply to "Subversive point of view"
twitterfire Member since:
2008-09-11

I'm glad to see not all people are brainwashed. I can see your point in no owning a TV. Even if I own a TV, I turn it on less and less since I can find less and less things on TV worthing to waste my time on.

Reply Score: 1

Subscribe? Where?
by griffbrad on Sat 20th Mar 2010 16:07 UTC
griffbrad
Member since:
2006-04-27

After the Ars story about ad blockers and struggling to bring in adequate revenue, I left them a comment saying that the $50/year upfront cost of subscribing had deterred me in the past. I'd long been a subscriber to Linux Weekly News, at $5 a month. Well, Ars just came out with a $5 a month subscription plan, and I joined right away. I'm glad to support such a consistent source of high quality original content. And they even actually provided a nice benefit to me for subscribing: full-text RSS feeds broken down by categories. I really appreciate that because it saves me time and prevents me from getting distracted while browsing around online.

Reading your article now, you mention that people can subscribe to OSNews. Did you mean this in the hypothetical sense? That you could add such an option? Because if it already exists, I can't find it anywhere. Make it more prominent. I'd be glad to help you guys out.

Reply Score: 1

As long as it concerns Osnews
by twitterfire on Sat 20th Mar 2010 17:26 UTC
twitterfire
Member since:
2008-09-11

As long as it concerns Osnews, I propose an entirely new approach.

Why not use sponsorship? The same way Formula 1 use it or soccer teams use it.

If I'll be in charge with a site like Osnews, that's one thing I'm willing to try: write to the first 100 technology companies like Intel, Microsoft, Oracle and so on, and ask for sponsorship. I'm sure that many of them are willing to be of some help. They will sponsor Osnews and in return they will have their logo displayed on the Osnews site and this is not an ad at all. They will benefit some tax reductions and even be entitled to write post some interesting, well written article about some of their products on Osnews. And the users will love it. Osnews gets it's needed money and users will benefit some interesting articles and will be less iritated by annoying ads.

If football players have their t-shorts imprinted with sponsor logo and racing cars are full of companies logo, why a tecnhology site can't proceed the same way?

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

If football players have their t-shorts imprinted with sponsor logo and racing cars are full of companies logo, why a tecnhology site can't proceed the same way?


You're being sarcastic, right?

Sponsored by the very same companies we report on? Heck, I already get "you're-pro-anti-everything" comments NOW, let alone when we let those companies sponsor OSNews!

Heh, over my dead body.

Reply Score: 1

twitterfire Member since:
2008-09-11

Well, I think it's better to see Intel's or Microsoft's logo somewhere on the footer than some "penis enlargement pills" ad.

Reply Score: 1

For me, it's a matter of trust
by deathshadow on Sat 20th Mar 2010 19:36 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

and to be brutally honest, I don't TRUST online advertisers on websites any more than I trust an e-mail from a "Baristar" in Nigeria.

Most common delivery method of malware to IE on websites? Advertisers. Who made popups an evil annoyance that EVERY browser now has some form of attempt to restrict? Advertisers. Leading source of tracking scripts designed to see what you are viewing and keep track of you online without your knowledge? Advertisers.

How anyone who used the Internet prior to the first dotcom bust would even consider NOT using an adblock is so far outside my realm of experience I cannot fathom it!

Advertisers are their own worst enemies when it comes to the INTERNET - while I'm certain there are plenty of legitimate companies running legitimate adverts, there are enough sleazeball ****'s out there that I simply do not trust them to even be shown...

Much less the waste of bandwidth since in many cases these animated gif's and fat bloated flash ads are many times larger than the websites they are on!

You figure in that even when I am running without an adblock I have never ONCE seen an advertisement for anything I was interested in that I wasn't either already aware of, and new where to get it.

In a way that's like this 'affiliate marketing' bull - which is little more than overglorified online advertising scams. You too can be an 'affiliate' spending your money to advertise products from a large companies website on the hope that people will visit you instead of the mega-site just to click through to the megasite so you get a payment... Uhm, right... Seriously, the type of online 'advertising' that this 'affiliate' nonsense is has all the business legitimacy of "Make money in realty fast with no money down" and all the other get rich quick scams you see on TV at 3AM alongside the kiddie porn Girls gone Wild videos. Ever heard of a ponzi scheme? **** sake this is the same type of bull that was a contributing factor (along with naive investor speculation) that LED to the dotcom bust.

Online advertising, as a rule of thumb, is so sleazy it makes the online porn industry look trustworthy... as such, I don't even WANT it on my computer, and will continue to actively block it in any and all forms.

... I suggest everyone else do the same.

-- edit --

I will say though that if you have a legitimate website and want to deffray the costs of running it through advertising, more power to you - the problem is that so many sleazeball scam artists and naive idiots falling for the scams are trying to slap together websites JUST to try to make money though advertising using black hat SEO trickery; That's not a legitimate reason to build a website and you're ruining the party for everyone.

Edited 2010-03-20 19:41 UTC

Reply Score: 3

oiaohm
Member since:
2009-05-30

Number 1 running noscript with defualt settings does not only kill of using javascript.

It killed off using flash java and silverlight and all other browser plug-ins from sources that user does not choose to allow.

So yes flash cookies don't get in past a noscript wall.

The idea that javascript is not dangerous in some form is also wrong. Badly coded javascript slows browser down. Somecases even crash the website out.. Auto reloading crap lot of banner ads suppliers use eats up bandwidth of mine I am not getting paid for. Larger than the content I want to see. Also slows down my browser.

Then there is a major issue with using about:blank with javascript by the way. There have been a lot of cross site attacks done by using about:blank. about:blank is not assigned to any particular site.

Some of these advertising firms need thier ass kicked for using about:blank.

Finding about:blank in the list of locations want to run scripts is pure bad coding. The big problem is the source location of the script is masked. So how can I simply report a error in that script to the right person. Also how can I be sure its not another site using about:blank that has caused about:blank on the page I am viewing to screw up.

Please note I was not yelling from a scuirty point of view about javascript being used to provide ads. Using about:blank todo it is purely wrong.

The other issue I was covering with javascript and plugins all browsers can turn them off. All. So depending on them to make you money without a plan b is stupidity.

Then the blind who do use computer by the way will not see image ads at all ever. So another section of market missed out on. If anyone browses in with a text mode browser they are not going to see them either.

Not only does providing text links to likes of amazon where you are a refering people gets around items like adblock and noscript. It makes sure you can make income from all classes of people who visit your site.

Basically is lazyness/stupidity not to provide some. Why should I fell sorry anyone who is either lazy or stupid.

Heck the first forms of adblocking were proxy servers. Those substituted the images. This problem of ads blocked is not new. Advertisers should be up in arms at these advertisement systems for not even to be able to work with 1996 tech. Ie adblocking has be done for over 10 years in the same basic ways. Why are you guys still using methods that run straight into them.

Reply Score: 1

...
by Hiev on Sun 21st Mar 2010 04:46 UTC
Hiev
Member since:
2005-09-27

People needs to stop that ad-phonia thing.

Reply Score: 2

Adservers blocked by DNS
by imtiaz on Sun 21st Mar 2010 08:08 UTC
imtiaz
Member since:
2005-07-06

Guys (osnews) what happens to you or ARS when we use DNS or proxy to block adservers ?
I have lots of adservers blocked through DNS and/or proxy and it usually keeps all sites enough clean.
Google ads are welcome as they are not intrusive.

Update (things added)
Just to let OSnews know, everyday I religiously visit OSnews and look for news and readers opinions.
Two things I do whenever I start my laptop or Desktop, fire up web browser and open two tabs. one for Gmail and 2nd one for OSnews. :-))

Edited 2010-03-21 08:12 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Comment by kaiwai
by kaiwai on Sun 21st Mar 2010 11:54 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

For me, I don't mind having ads; I have no ad blocking software in place on my web browser because through the advertising it allows small websites like osnews to pay the bills and provide me (the lazy schmuck behind the desk) to have some great articles being written.

With that being said, it doesn't help when many websites have big obnoxious advertisements that turn me off their website immediately because of it. I don't mind a modest size ad but when you've got misleading, distracting, dishonest and irrelevant ads then you're going to find it more and more difficult to make your case to your readership to put your website on their whitelist. If you have scareware advertisements on your website - am I really going to take your website seriously? if your advertisers have flashing ads that distract me from reading the article - is that really going to entice me to stay for long periods of time? its time for webmasters to wake up.

Reply Score: 2

Ad-server latency blocking content
by cjcoats on Sun 21st Mar 2010 13:27 UTC
cjcoats
Member since:
2006-04-16

There is another issue not mentioned here: the fact that ad-load times frequently dominate the total rendering time for the page I want to see. Occasionally, I'll have an attempt to load a page "freeze" for a minute or more while the ad-server is lazily serving its content, and then everything else downloads and the browser renders the page in five seconds or less.

If an ad-server has the effect of blocking the page content, it is doing the web publisher a serious disservice: users will either go away from the page and quite possibly never go back, or else will black-list the ad-server.

There are two sides to a social contract, and ad vendors need to uphold their side.

FWIW.

Reply Score: 1

morglum666 Member since:
2005-07-06

I actually have similar experiences to you. I read two pages a minute (I forget the actual rate) and the greatest lag that I experience would be the ad servers, if I didn't adblock them.

I consume a great deal of news and information daily so I use the fasted browser I can which is currently Chrome.

I am terribly, terribly annoyed when an ad is not just slow but it does something really rude like talk to you (and somehow in the maximum volume possible).

My users at work are largely still on IE 6 so this is generally something I only have to experience when working on one of their machines.

The other side of this is if we had a perfect world where advertisements were not virus-payload instruments or launched giant ads that crippled your pcs (like flash - the root of all evil) is that based on the description in the article it looks like the cost of actually serving news is being passed down and down the chain until someone blinks.

The problem here is that in the comparison with Ars technica, they are a site with a considerable amount of depth to them and you might consider them both a news side and a technical resource. That might be worth money to me; however osnews as remarkable as it is exists as a news site only.

I don't subscribe to any physical newspapers and I'm not against paying; but you would be competing with a significant amount of other sites in a capitalistic way. If any of them are 80, 85, 90% as good and they are free, you might just lose me forever.

If nothing else, I will consider removing ad-block for osnews out of respect for the owner.

Morglum

Reply Score: 2

I'm just saying
by marcp on Sun 21st Mar 2010 15:14 UTC
marcp
Member since:
2007-11-23

If you don't have money to publish - don't publish.
It's THAT simple. Don't expect people to pay you for the fact that YOU 'have to / like to' publish.
The whole discussion is quite irritating, as most of the publishers try to reverse the whole thing upside down, just like the organizations like MS/RIAA/US government used to do here and there. It's simple misinformation.
The real problem lies elsewhere:
>> do you have money to do what you would like to do? <<
If not, then raise some funds by yourself and don't force others to pay you. I don't have to read your publishings and you don't have to write. Besides - there are always some alternatives to get for free. Information is not a portion of meat - you can't just sell that.

Reply Score: 1

To cut the craps
by twitterfire on Sun 21st Mar 2010 16:11 UTC
twitterfire
Member since:
2008-09-11

I don't like ads. I don't click ads. I don't make any buying decision based on ads and I have all the rights in the world to decide what goes in my web browser and through my internet connection. I have all the rights in the world to use ad block and no one can deny it.

On the other hand, the webmasters have all the rights to try tricking me to see the ads either by trying to block content when detecting ad blockers or by trying to write smarter code that goes through ad blockers (harder, if not impossible).

Then I have the right to either cease visiting that particular website - after all here is no site I can't live without - that's more likely or try to modify ad blocker's code to pass through detection.

Either way, he doesn't get publicity money from me, so he have to come up with another idea if he wants to see money from myself. I don't know, maybe offering some exciting new feature, that I'll think I can't live without and buy it.

Reply Score: 1

A technology race
by NorthWay on Sun 21st Mar 2010 21:09 UTC
NorthWay
Member since:
2007-02-22

So clue me in on this,

AdBlock and similar will avoid downloading the ads and thus not showing them, right?

What if the browser and something like AdBlock worked together, and as such actually _downloaded_ the ads, but never showed them? How would you know if I actually saw the add or if they were hidden from my view?

Reply Score: 1

RE: A technology race
by darknexus on Sun 21st Mar 2010 23:44 UTC in reply to "A technology race"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

So clue me in on this,

AdBlock and similar will avoid downloading the ads and thus not showing them, right?

What if the browser and something like AdBlock worked together, and as such actually _downloaded_ the ads, but never showed them? How would you know if I actually saw the add or if they were hidden from my view?

This actually depends on what ad blocker and/or web browser you use. Firefox with Adblock Plus, for example, will not download the ads at all whereas many of the ad blockers for Webkit-based browsers will download them and simply not show them to you. The disadvantage of the second approach is, of course, that the tracking cookies and whatever other crap the ad wants to stick on your system get stuck there anyway. Personally, that's why I use adblock and noscript. I don't actually mind the concept of ads, so long as they're relevant and don't get in the way (in-text ads must die!) but I'm sick of these ad agencies tracking every bloody page I visit. I like the idea that has been suggested here where by I tell the ad agency what types of ads I want to see. Don't try to analyze me, no one knows what I want better than I do, and that way you don't have to try and stick tracking bulls**t everywhere in my browser.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: A technology race
by Thom_Holwerda on Sun 21st Mar 2010 23:46 UTC in reply to "RE: A technology race"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

And making the storing of cookies manual (i.e., have the browser ask you) is not an option?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: A technology race
by darknexus on Sun 21st Mar 2010 23:53 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A technology race"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

And making the storing of cookies manual (i.e., have the browser ask you) is not an option?

Not if I actually want to read the web page instead of refusing cookie after cookie. Try it yourself, see how many useless cookies web pages throw at you. They've no right to track me if I don't wish them to. I don't mind ads, as I said, just don't fscking spy on me!

Reply Score: 2

AdBlock does exactly what it says.
by oiaohm on Sun 21st Mar 2010 23:08 UTC
oiaohm
Member since:
2009-05-30

"AdBlock and similar will avoid downloading the ads and thus not showing them, right? "

It block the downloads of the ads and they are never downloaded. It also rewrite the page removing evidence of what it blocked. Exactly like http://ossi.cjb.net/sw/junkex.html from 2001 and this is based on a older project that started back in the 1990~.

http://www.privoxy.org/ Is also a currently supported proxy that does the same thing.

Now if you are talking about downloading and not showing. I can do that too. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/748 Greasemonkey. Yet I am unlikely to. Overhead show page renders just to hide the ads is not worth it.

Think about it an auto updating Greasemonkey system countering your sites advertisement system you will lose means to win. But the user of a system like that is losing as well in performance. Now problem is some of the current advertisers will cause this to happen because they advertise inappropriate material.

Remember running adblock is not costless it does have a performance price. Noscript is almost costless on performance. Both cases the advertising systems sites are using are costing more than there counter measures.

People wanting to block ads are already better armed to take the ads out then any system to counter. Basically fight is not an option the ads display war is lost it was lost about 4 years ago. All you will cause by Ars style fight is that the techs get to the point no ads forms will work.

Only solution is answer why people are blocking. Most are not trying to harm your site. The point you have to see is it not your actions alone that cause them to install adblocking software either.

Users have to be treated better. Sites have to think about things. Like donation/links buttons what is wrong with asking for money. What is wrong with a few direct links to likes of amazon where it will directly kick back. That right lots of advertising firms forbid this in the agreement. Move to better firms.

How ads have done is causing the fight back. Until that is addressed sites don't stand a chance.

Big thing to remember your content is being displayed on the visitors own machine using the vistors own internet connection.

With a newspaper you print it so you can force ads but even adblocking exists there. Classic example is people cutting bits out of newspapers. They could have taken the full page with ads but no they cut it out because they only want to see what they are interested in.

Now the most effective newspaper ads are the ones that are useful and people are prepared to cut out and use later. Notice something here. A referral link to amazon or the like that user can bookmark ie cut out is higher profit and follows what has been learnt over all the time of newspaper advertising.

Ads if they are their must be light and 100 percent either useful or on topic and must be able to be bookmarked in away that the bookmark gives you kickbacks.

Seriously you wonder why the ads are not working for a lot of sites their design is screwed up by using advertisers that are not passing the basics. The issues have not changed in over 100 years.

Notice the content separation also in the paper based print sex pictures are not mixed up with general content like cars. Yet some advertises online do mix it up. If this happened the mag was pulled from shelf.

Really a lot of people don't like this. But if sites had to have classification and advertising firms were forced by law to obey these classifications you would have less cases of ads blocking.

Now since this cannot be done. Naming and Shaming the bad advertiser operators to push them out the market is something that needs to happen. Does anyone know of a single site that reviews online advertisement firms for providing correct content. Naming and Shaming is not the publics job. Its the medias themselves. Ie little bit of self regulation is required as well.

Reply Score: 1

oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

inappropriate material bit I missed a little. Look at the looking for sex section in newspaper its text.

inappropriate material for young people done in text is less offensive than images of inappropriate material. Reason text based people have to be able to create image in mind.

Image blocking should be expected as long as rouges remain in the advertising game. No matter how much you hate ads done it text like google single line ads they are the least likely to offend and the least likely for anyone to block.

Blocking is not happening without motive. Reduce motive more income.

Reply Score: 1

You could look at microdonations
by svenskefaen on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 09:29 UTC
svenskefaen
Member since:
2010-03-23

Something like this could be appropriate especially for an open-source oriented site.

http://flattr.com/beta/

It's pretty new, but based on a concept of simple microdonations.

Reply Score: 1

Few useful ideas.
by oiaohm on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 14:47 UTC
oiaohm
Member since:
2009-05-30

Make sure your site gets some ways that people like me with noscript on can pay you. Even with Adblock whitelisting I see no ads at all. Noscript is enough to ads strip your page. Note Noscript is purely about secuirty. Never really intended to harm advertising.

Donation button is a basic requirement. If you cannot at least shame people into turning off there blocking system you can at least attempt to shame them into giving something.

Doing like links to amazon for like book reviews or useful books on the topic to pick up referral income. Ie end of story useful or interesting links.

Ie new book and device reviews is not exactly news but it advertisement on a larger scale. Again only if the device is worth while do you need to put a message on it. At least people going in there know what it is.

http://www.osnews.com/story/23039/Kicking_in_Open_Doors_Open_Source...

One of the links could have been
http://www.amazon.com/Cathedral-Bazaar-Musings-Accidental-Revolutio... just for like a history background if you were interested or new.

http://www.osnews.com/comments/23042 this is also another open option to provide referral links about patent laws.

Difference here referral links are created by looking at the content you are putting up and matching up the links.

Of course not every story can have referral links added in this way. But it does make the document more completely.

Even items like ubuntu could have a link to by the iso if you don't want to download it.

Basically you are missing chances to advertise related data that could make you profit.

Number 1 these are all stuff that can be done as text. Referral systems pay by click through and purchases. Not as picky as those that pay by view.

Note Referral systems are normally setup by directly talking to the person wanting sales directly. So avoiding middle men.

Basically don't tell me their are not options. If you want to make money possibility from all visitors their are options. Even better purchase percentage coming to you is normally better with a direct refer than with advertising banner adds. Also the hit rate is normally high because the stuff their is on topic and worth while for people to check out.

Reply Score: 1

Re-arrange the webpage
by Envying1 on Wed 24th Mar 2010 22:55 UTC
Envying1
Member since:
2008-04-22

I just read the post, was not sure if somebody already mentioned this.

There is a popular way to collect some money by asking hobbist to donate money for open source programmer through Paypal.

I think if the website can provide a hidden ad frame or tab w/o showing what ads in there at the beginning but with a button for readers to expand it if readers consider the publisher is doing a great job, they should be able to donate their clicking on hidden-expandable ads. This might be a better way to sponsor the publisher w/o ruining the reading experience.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Re-arrange the webpage
by oiaohm on Thu 25th Mar 2010 00:15 UTC in reply to "Re-arrange the webpage"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

I just read the post, was not sure if somebody already mentioned this.

There is a popular way to collect some money by asking hobbist to donate money for open source programmer through Paypal.

I think if the website can provide a hidden ad frame or tab w/o showing what ads in there at the beginning but with a button for readers to expand it if readers consider the publisher is doing a great job, they should be able to donate their clicking on hidden-expandable ads. This might be a better way to sponsor the publisher w/o ruining the reading experience.


Remember this idea only works if the ads work. Current issue is against items like noscript they don't. Method of doing the ads has to be changed. As secuirty from cross site attacks increase in browsers current systems of ads lots of sites are using could become neutralized without user having to install third party.

There is already a form of a hidden frame under shopping. But there is no advertisement for it.

Donation button I have said a few times. It makes pure sense. Argument is donations alone are not enough. What is true.

Good with bad. If anything that is to make money is going to work it requires advertisement. Unfortunately hidden away does not work.

I really should do up a guide for website developers about the counter measures to advertising. What methods are insanely hard to block.

Yes there are site design selections that can make advertisement on site basically unblock-able from the parent site. Attempting to block will basically damage the site. Third party out sourcing is never unblock-able. Using scripts always block-able as well.

Reply Score: 1