Blocking ads

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  • Blocking ads
  • Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    Woah there Trigger-finger-Mod! Easy on the be-damming button there!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25219922

    So is the whitelist acceptance fee extortion or just a way of enforcing good practice:

    The principles of “acceptable” advertising, as defined by Adblock Plus and its volunteer community:

    Acceptable Ads are not annoying.
    Acceptable Ads do not disrupt or distort page content.
    Acceptable Ads are transparent with us about being an ad.
    Acceptable Ads are effective without shouting at us.
    Acceptable Ads are appropriate to the site or tweet that we are on.

    This makes interesting reading too


    http://www.businessinsider.com/google-is-bigger-than-all-magazines-and-newspapers-combined-2013-11

    pondo
    Member

    Is there any moral difference between using an ad blocker, and recording something off the telly and then fast-forwarding through the ad breaks?

    clubber
    Member

    It certainly looks like extortion in many ways. I guess that they’re banking on the fact that people inherently dislike big corporates (which is who I assume are fee-liable companies) and aren’t going to mind.

    Setting out criteria for the whitelist is a good thing though, particularly as the product becomes more popular.

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    certain kinds of people look forward to new ads, xmas ads, or the next episode in an instant coffee ad. Probably as a result of some advertisers making the effort to raise their advertising to a higher “art” form. Maybe if online advertisers attempted a similar strategy without going the annoying bleeping animated banner route instead they might do better.

    zokes
    Member

    I fail to see a difference between using an ad_blocker to stop me from seeing adverts which I would pay no attention to, and not using an ad_blocker and still paying no attention to said adverts. The former is just less annoying.

    It’s my computer screen, I’ll control what’s displayed on it.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    what are these ads you talk about?

    There was some crap on between overs today on the cricket – it just reminded me to piss/make more tea/eat

    clubber
    Member

    Are you TJ πŸ™‚

    Anyway, the point really is that people in general clearly do click through ads – they wouldn’t keep paying for them if they didn’t generate revenue. If everyone blocks them (not just the immune) then we can all see the issues for smaller sites.

    I’m ok with adblock plus’ idea of allowing ads that conform to certain rules because if that’s the price to pay to keep websites I like going, I’m ok with that. What their rules (should) do is mean that the ads don’t stop other things working properly (eg taking up memory/cpu) or spoil my enjoyment of the site (pop ups, flashing, etc).

    It’s my computer screen, I’ll control what’s displayed on it.

    That’s fine until it starts to reduce free content that you want to access. If adblock with full ad blocking becomes too prevalent, that’s the end result.

    EDIT – lol at the replacement of the name of the product I’m talking about with ‘freeload’ πŸ™‚

    zokes
    Member

    That’s fine until it starts to reduce free content that you want to access. If freeload with full freeloading becomes too prevalent, that’s the end result.

    There was a time, not so long ago, when ads made many a site nigh-on unusable. That’s when I started, ahem, freeloading. I’d never really bothered until that point. But then, realising how much cleaner my screen generally looks without a billion things I don’t want to buy cluttered all over it, I decided I’d keep it that way.

    It would never have crossed my mind but for ads being OTT in the first place.

    Most sites have other ways of raising revenue, be it either by subscription, or selling your data / content with consent you gave in the middle of a very long T&Cs statement that you never bothered to read.

    Most sites have other ways of raising revenue, be it either by subscription, or selling your data

    No they don’t, that’s just your way of ‘justifying’ it to yourself.

    zokes
    Member

    No they don’t, that’s just your way of ‘justifying’ it to yourself.

    No, it’s not.

    Premier Icon tomhoward
    Subscriber

    I can’t imagine anyone would pay to block ads.

    Oh, wait….

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    dont modern PVR’s have automatic advert skipping?
    I never watch live TV anymore, only what my computer records and it just takes a handful of 30s ffwd skips to get past the ads each time.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    dont modern PVR’s have automatic advert skipping?

    Depends. Obviously Sky aren’t going to implement it on their own boxes.
    In NZ – having a freeview certification means that you can’t make it easy to skip ads. ff and rew ok – skip forward 1min or 4mins not allowed.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    I don’t believe any site has the ‘right to revenue’, so if they have a business model built on ads and they aren’t effective, then they need to change their business model imo.

    It’s quite common to see sites which detect blocking and reduce features for those using the blocker. e.g. AVforums. I don’t know how effective this is though.

    That article in the OP is interesting – about video ads driving people to block. They are the most intrusive. I didn’t even know they were so common until I used someone else’s computer the other day!

    slowoldgit
    Member

    It was ads that flashed and flickered that drove me to look elsewhere. I see elsewhere has an ‘acceptable ads’ definition. Could that happen here?

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    Most of the sites I advertise with, analyse every advert to see if it’s annoying or not (as well as other content guidelines).
    I guess the trouble comes with ad syndication – where you suck in ads from 3rd party ad servers.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    … which is what happens here I believe.

    Troublesome ads can be dropped though, I know Singletrack Towers have done this in the past.

    It’s quite common to see sites which detect blocking and reduce features for those using the blocker. e.g. AVforums. I don’t know how effective this is though.

    Yeah, AVF is where I first saw that. It’s pretty slick; dead simple to implement too, I’m surprised it’s not more common. Something like NoScript would defeat it fairly readily though, I expect.

    I don’t believe any site has the ‘right to revenue’, so if they have a business model built on ads and they aren’t effective, then they need to change their business model imo.

    Or close the site, of course.

    xiphon
    Member

    Ad-related question – does every channel on Sky TV get a slice of your monthly fees?

    Or is it just Sky owned channels?

    Premier Icon hot_fiat
    Subscriber

    I’d be very surprised if sky’s business model doesn’t actually demand broadcasters pay them to carry their channel.

    xiphon
    Member

    @hot fiat That’s what I was thinking.

    I tried ‘watching’ live Sky TV the other day.

    A 60 minute program was 36 minutes in length, with adverts filling up the rest.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    I know. If I stumble upon something I want to see, I pause it, go and do something useful, then come back to it in 15mins so that I can fast forward through the ads.

    Premier Icon I_did_dab
    Subscriber

    we turn the sound off for TV ads and play guess the product, if you have no idea at the end of the ad it’s probably a perfume or aftershave.

    I’m a adblocker adblock. Long live the adblock

    5thElefant
    Member

    Is it ethical to block ads?

    No. You’re avoiding paying for content.

    But, on a forum, assuming you post, you’re providing content for free. You’re the product, not the consumer. So… maybe.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    And of course, electricity, web hosting, bandwidth, developers’ time are all free commodities.

    I found a fairly balanced write-up here that presents both sides of the argument.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    It’s probably worth re-reading STW’s official policy too, of course.

    Site Terms & Conditions

    clubber
    Member

    Well since you posted the link (though I think that the spellchecker will have fun with it πŸ™‚ )

    Our policy on Ad Blocking
    The ads in a very real sense do allow you to use this site for free. If the ads were not there earning us money for the time we spend keeping this site running then we simply would not bother with a website at all or we would severely strip it back to just being a promotion site for the mag. It simply would not be economically viable without the ads there.

    Now, in light of that but also taking the pragmatic decision that the technology to block ads is out there and there is nothing we can do to prevent people from using it, we have decided that any threads posted on our forum that publicise or promote the removing of ads from this website are actually counterproductive to not just us but you as well. No ads, no site.

    So…

    We ASK that you don’t act to remove the ads.. But it is just a request. But we WILL remove threads that promote the removal of the ads on our site and we WILL ban permanently any repeat offenders.

    Nothing is free. The price you pay to use this site is the ads that are displayed on it. If you are a Premier User the annual cost of your account is used to generate the content that is made available to you. This fee does NOT contribute towards the upkeep of the website or the free to view content, such as news stories and reviews.

    So in summary. Install ad blockers if you want. but don’t discuss it on our forum. But please consider the importance of the ads to the future of this free to use website before you take any action to prevent the ads on this site from displaying in your browser.

    I’m wouldn’t have said that this thread was promoting it but of course as a mod, you get the final say I guess.

    slowoldgit
    Member

    I get a casino add now. I’m just wondering where the limits are, remembering the eastern brides from a while ago.

    5thElefant
    Member

    I get a casino add now. I’m just wondering where the limits are, remembering the eastern brides from a while ago.

    The ads you’re seeing have a lot more to do with you than the website you see them on. You’re the target market.

    I seem to get ads for mature singles which is a bit worrying.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    On another note, I find it really strange when commercial companies put barriers between the customer and the content.
    More annoying than ads are ‘take a survey’ pop-ups on your first visit to a site! I really don’t understand those – talk about getting off on the wrong foot!
    I understand the need for customer feedback (well actually I don’t, but that’s another debate), but I often get annoyed before I’ve even sampled a site.

    slowoldgit
    Member

    If they really knew me, they’d know my attitude to gambling.

    I shall have to google deranged filth and see what ads they provide. Or maybe not.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    I’m wouldn’t have said that this thread was promoting it but of course as a mod, you get the final say I guess.

    Well, I don’t, the site owners do. I’m just trying to make sensible decisions in the meantime.

    The T&Cs aren’t clear here I don’t think; the first paragraph says “don’t promote” and the last one says “don’t discuss.” My interpretation of this is the rule is intended to prevent people from encouraging others to block the advertising as this would ultimately lead to the site no longer being economically viable.

    As such, so far I’ve let the thread run as it appears – so far – not to have contradicted that rule. Just so as we’re clear though, this isn’t some sort of official statement or seal of approval, just my understanding of what was meant. I could well be way off the Mark.

    xiphon
    Member

    I’m surprised at the bit about how premier subscribers don’t fund the website.

    If I was a Premier User, the least I would expect is an ad-free website.

    If you are a Premier User the annual cost of your account is used to generate the content that is made available to you. This fee does NOT contribute towards the upkeep of the website or the free to view content, such as news stories and reviews.

    edlong
    Member

    I could well be way off the Mark.

    I like what you did there.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    On the premier settings page, there’s a button which says
    “Decrease adverts”
    It was the first thing I did as a premier subscriber.
    So it must be factored in there somewhere. Note that it doesn’t get rid of all adverts though.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    I’m surprised at the bit about how premier subscribers don’t fund the website.

    The way I was reading that was that there’s a distinction between “the website” and “the forum”. Maybe.

    I have limited bandwidth available to me, particularly on a mobile.

    I don’t want it cheesed up by video ads.

    I don’t mind static ads, but I’d prefer not having them. But I understand websites need the revenue.

    I agree with the whitelist thing.

    I never click adverts. Ever.

    In fact if there was a way of replacing those crapola video ads, and printing up some descriptive words, e.g. “christmassy type advert for self ironing trousers by french connection”, and doing so meant that the website got their ad cash, but I didn’t have to download a video, I’d be cool with that.

    It wouldn’t affect whether I actually bought some self ironing trousers (I wouldn’t).

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Subscriber

    I’ve said this before, but I’d be happy to pay a forum subscription for no ads and no additional (magazine) content.

    pitduck
    Member
    zokes
    Member

    Before ads went all sophisticated, I did used to do one thing that was encouraged: add the link from the add on this site to crc/wiggle to my favourites. That way, every time I wanted to look at bits of bike, I made it look like id come from stw, and presumably they got some money.

    No idea if that would work these days, but I’m sure that’s something a lot of us would only be too happy to do.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    One thing STW could look into would be to scrape links and replace with referral links – I don’t know if there’s a wordpress plugin that would do it, but it would be a good source of income with 2-3% available on most large cycling websites.

    On Money Saving Expert they just put an asterisk after every affiliate link with a note at the bottom saying that it earns them a small amount of money. Visitors seem fine with this even though the man is a multi-millionaire!

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