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How Web Advertising May Go

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the hoping-it's-the-worst-case-scenario dept.

The Internet 229

Anti-Globalism sends us to Ars Technica for Jon Stokes's musing on the falling value of Web advertising. Stokes put forward the outlying possibility — not a prediction — that ad rates could fall by 40% before turning up again, if they ever do. "A web page, in contrast, is typically festooned with hyperlinked visual objects that fall all over themselves in competing to take you elsewhere immediately once you're done consuming whatever it is that you came to that page for. So the page itself is just one very small slice of an unbounded media experience in which a nearly infinite number of media objects are scrambling for a vanishingly small sliver of your attention. ... We've had a few hundred years to learn to monetize print, over 75 years to monetize TV, and, most importantly, millennia to build business models based on scarcity. In contrast, our collective effort to monetize post-scarcity digital media have only just begun."

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229 comments

In what should be pointing out the obvious (5, Interesting)

Anrego (830717) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326799)

.. but unfortunately just doesn't seem to be.. these are some of the major failings I see in online advertising today:

Inconsistency! This to me is a huge one. Back in the day.. you'd be surfing your favourite site.. and you'd see the same ad over and over. Every day, there it would be. Sooner or later you'd get curious and click on it.. and the odd rare time, you would find a product that generally interested you. You don't see that any more. Now every time you visit the site.. a completely different set of random ads shows up. There is no longer that cumulative curiosity.

Relevancy! Ok.. google's adsence has made a lot of headway in this area... but automated tools (even really freaking complex ones) simply can't replace a web aster finding a product on his.her own that he/she feels visitors will want.

Slow freaking ad servers! Back in the day (cough) .. the ad was hosted on the same server as the rest of the page. Users didn't have to wait for some slow overloaded ad server.

Only getting paid on "confirmed purchases". To me this is a rip of for webmasters. The few times I have bought something I saw advertised on a web page.. I didn't access it through the ad. I googled for it later when a need for such product arose. Ads don't usually have an immediate effect imo .. they are cumulative. You see a product name over and over.. and eventually decide to buy it. You see the same ad for some web host every time you visit a site.. then one day you need web hosting.. and the name pops up. Chances are you are not going to go click on the ad.. but non the less the ad was effective.

Just being freaking irritating. The latest craze is these hover over links. Every time I see one.. I feel like heating up a steel spring with a blow torch, then carefully sliding it up the webmasters nose. Stuff like this encourages people to install ad blockers. Back when ads were un-intrusive.. most people didn't bother with ad blockers. Now though.. browsing the web without some kind of blocker is an experience in pain... and unfortunately the nice ads that don't annoy users get blocked along with everything else.

Anyway, that is enough drunken 3am rambling!

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (5, Funny)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326853)

"Every time I see one.. I feel like heating up a steel spring with a blow torch, then carefully sliding it up the webmasters nose"

i have to say "nose" was the last place i expected this sentence to end in.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (3, Insightful)

Dyinobal (1427207) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326893)

Every time I see an add I right click and select adblock image. Just me though..

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (1)

Dyinobal (1427207) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326913)

Edit Add = Ad

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (2, Interesting)

RuBLed (995686) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327023)

Everytime I need to go to a site I'm not regularly browsing, I search it on Google and browse it through the Text-Only cache. It is faster and I get the bulk of information I need.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (5, Informative)

alriode (1161299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327047)

You don't have to block every single image.

There are Adblock filter subscriptions (ad server domains + regular expressions). I subscribed to 5 from them and update the lists every now and then. More than 99% of site advertising is blocked for me.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (5, Insightful)

aetherworld (970863) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327241)

I run a few websites with services for certain groups of people. I support these websites with ads.

You see, as a webmaster, I basically have two options. After I developed the site for free in my spare time (it was fun!), I have to keep it running. This includes writing content, updating stuff, managing the user database (one of the sites has over 200.000 users). Which I also do in my spare time because it's still fun and doesn't cost me money.

That's not everything, though. At the end of every month, my hoster sends me a bill for each of my websites. Those bills are between 100$ and 250$ for each of those sites.

Frankly, while spending my spare time building websites is enjoyable, spending 500$-1000$ a month (!) to keep them running, is not.

I rely on people to click my ads. I place my ads carefully so they don't interrupt users reading, I blacklist bad ads and I only run AdSense ads. Currently, the revenue is about 20% more than what I have to pay for the servers. However, if 50% of my users would block ads or simply not click on them, I would have to shut down my websites.

Bottom line: Ads are a great way to fund websites run by small businesses and one-man-shows. If you think those websites are unnecessary and the internet would be better off without them and only big businesses should have the right to have a website, by all means block the ads!

Clarification: I do use Firefox with Adblock but I allow AdSense ads and ads from a few other publishers I trust enough not to show some ugly flash overlays/popunders/music playing ads etc. I also whitelist all websites I visit regularly where the ads don't bother me.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (4, Informative)

ion.simon.c (1183967) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327577)

*nods*

I'll see your advert iff:
* You don't use client-side JavaScript to insert it into the page.
* It's not a Flash ad.
* It's not HUGE. (mail.yahoo.com: I'm glaring in your direction.)
* The host you use to serve the ad has *never* shown me an annoying, flashy "OMG YOU MAY HAVE WON AN IPOD" style ad. (doubleclick.net and RealMedia.com are right out, sorry.)

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327631)

Anything with flashing colors or animation is going to get blocked by me.

Anything which causes the page to take twice as long to load (eg. loading Javascript from a dozen different sites)? Blocked.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26326917)

The latest craze is these hover over links. Every time I see one.. I feel like heating up a steel spring with a blow torch, then carefully sliding it up the webmasters nose.

Nose? NOSE?!?

You're way too mellow about the annoyance of that thing. Call me when you're annoyed enough stuff an incandescent light bulb up an ad executive's ass, flip it on, and tell him that the burning stops when he clenches hard enough to shatter it.

Anyways, the light bulb thing was my second reaction when I first saw a Kontera ContextClick ad. (I'm sure they're not the only ones, they were just the first one I saw.) First reaction was that my machine had been exploited. Turns out it's a bunch of Javashit that gets sourced into the page, which automatically scans a served page's source, and then rewrites random keywords in the page, turning them into hyperlinks to ads. Really fucking annoying, and an insta-entry for the company into the router's blocklist, and into the HOSTS file on the laptop.

Anyway, that is enough drunken 3am rambling!

...either that, or I've really gotta get drinking more. Your mellowness about the whole hover-over advertising links is pretty cool.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (1)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326999)

The latest craze is these hover over links. Every time I see one.. I feel like heating up a steel spring with a blow torch, then carefully sliding it up the webmasters nose.

Wait, that's an option? Jesus... TAKE IT RIGHT NOW!

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (1)

JamieBedford (1238192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327005)

"but automated tools (even really freaking complex ones) simply can't replace a web aster finding a product on his.her own that he/she feels visitors will want." I can't tell you how much I agree with this. When a web content creator says "I like this product" it meas so so so so much more to me than seeing a random ad on a random page. I'd rather there be no adds, but just have a little google-style sidebar thing that says "The creators of this website like this stuff for these reasons". Also, any web content creator that isn't getting paid just to put ads on their page is giving their real estate away for free. If the ad isn't effective, that's probably the advertisers fault... the page space is still being cluttered up by it, though, so the content creator should still be getting reimbursed for that.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327077)

Back when ads were un-intrusive.. most people didn't bother with ad blockers.

Mostly because there weren't any. Of course, back then most of the ads were in the form of a banner at the top of the page. Those I didn't mind at all; scroll down a tad and away they go!

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (4, Insightful)

the_womble (580291) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327085)

Stuff like this encourages people to install ad blockers. Back when ads were un-intrusive.. most people didn't bother with ad blockers. Now though.. browsing the web without some kind of blocker is an experience in pain... and unfortunately the nice ads that don't annoy users get blocked along with everything else.

What we really need are "annoying ad blockers". That would gives sites an incentive to use less obtrusive adds, which would be less likely to be blocked.

The effects of ad blockers that block everything is to encourage advertorials and other sneaky ways to get past them, most of which are worse than the original ads.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327197)

"and unfortunately the nice ads that don't annoy users... Anyway, that is enough drunken 3am rambling!"

Anrego (830717): Drunkenly redefining the concept of oxymoron at 3am.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327597)

Only getting paid on "confirmed purchases". To me this is a rip of for webmasters. The few times I have bought something I saw advertised on a web page.. I didn't access it through the ad. I googled for it later when a need for such product arose. Ads don't usually have an immediate effect imo .. they are cumulative. You see a product name over and over.. and eventually decide to buy it. You see the same ad for some web host every time you visit a site.. then one day you need web hosting.. and the name pops up. Chances are you are not going to go click on the ad.. but non the less the ad was effective.

As someone who actually works in internet advertising I can tell that there is already a system for that called iSales, I think. (Only name I remember right now isales. At least TradeDoubler offers it. The point is that you put a banner on your site and if an user (within some weeks of seeing it) afterwards goes to the cite through any means and buys the product, you gain your revenue. Not a perfect system but still works pretty well

Oh, and the article is total bullcrap.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (3, Insightful)

digitig (1056110) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327891)

Oh, and the article is total bullcrap

Rule for reading any headline of the form "[noun phrase] may [verb phrase]". Always mentally add "but almost certainly won't." The headline will almost certainly be based on something like a 99th percentile, to make the headline seem dramatic.

Re:In what should be pointing out the obvious (1)

Heddahenrik (902008) | more than 5 years ago | (#26328117)

I think there should be advertisers that allowed cookie stuffing in exchange for ads on every page on the site. How it would work:

The publishers would show the ads that make branding (not selling ads) on their pages according to how the advertiser want them. When the ad is shown, it's done so in an iframe that sets a cookie. If the customer goes directly to the advertiser to buy (regardless of following the link) without passing any other publisher's ads of the same kind, then the first publisher get credits. The advertiser can also write "We are considered a good seller by: Slashdot, Elftown [elftown.com] .. and so on" on their site.

This would take us away from the damn "forcing the user to click" hell. With this method the advertisers can buy trust from the site they are playing the ad on, instead of visibility, and it's often way more important.

This kind of advertising would work great both for advertisers and publishers on sites like Slashdot or my own Elftown. It would not work for the crap-sites (well, no advertiser would use them) that has no valuable content, no returning customers, but that make huge amounts of money on that people click on their ads to get away from the site.

The downside for advertisers is that they have to pay for their old customers that return, but the price for that is lower than paying for "new customers" that usually aren't old, but fraud or allowed but similar type of clicks.

I still wonder about Google (0)

Spy Handler (822350) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326815)

I still wonder just how is it possible that Google is worth $100 trillion (or whatever their market cap is now)... it's a search engine that sells text ads on its website for crying out loud

Re:I still wonder about Google (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26326859)

You need only to check http://www.google.com/services/ [google.com] to see that they offer more than just ads. Our intra net uses the google appliance to power our internal search engine for instance.

2 Words (1)

hezekiah957 (1219288) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326885)

Publicly Traded

Re:I still wonder about Google (1)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326983)

They also sell the search engine directly and offer other services though the price is probably a bit inflated.

People want to invest in the winning safe .com and google is that site for most stock jockeys.

Re:I still wonder about Google (1)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327015)

It's a tad more complex than just text ads however I do think you are correct in questioning exactly how much these at least partially ad based companies are worth, especially when ad blocking software is on the rise. The dot com bust occured because companies were based on shaky business sustained by buzz and capital that *didn't actually exist* in that they weren't creating anything... sometimes I wonder if that is also the case with these ad based companies... Who knows- maybe they've figuVred out how to live off of ads like TV does, but I severely doubt it. I'll give it a good year

More intrusive ads for the same revenue? (4, Insightful)

mlts (1038732) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326887)

What I fear is that due to this, websites will end up having to host more intrusive ads (interstitials, the whole website being a Flash object that demands not just Flash enabled but the saving of shared objects) for the same money, as well as more code to try to block ad blocking programs (which makes it worse long term as people go elsewhere for similar content.)

Even now, a good number of Web forums will insta-ban someone just on the mention of Adblock and NoScript because the sites are so desparate for revenue.

Long term, I wonder if the solution is a page click clearinghouse, where people pay a central subscription center (in return for no ads and other membership benefits to all subscriber websites) which pays websites by how many pages that user browses from their account. Essentially, similar to how Slashdot does its subscriptions, except with member sites getting paid per view.

Re:More intrusive ads for the same revenue? (3, Interesting)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326961)

Long term, I wonder if the solution is a page click clearinghouse, where people pay a central subscription center (in return for no ads and other membership benefits to all subscriber websites) which pays websites by how many pages that user browses from their account. Essentially, similar to how Slashdot does its subscriptions, except with member sites getting paid per view.

You mean, like ummm, like paying not see advertisements right? *sarcasm*

That's like PAYING FOR PORN . You don't have too. Surfing the net without advertisements is as easy as getting free pictures of boobies on Google.

P.S - A little known fact is that 15-20% of all tcp/ip packets ultimately end up displaying a tit, nipple, ass, etc. It's true.

Yeah, and here you can see come examples (4, Funny)

temcat (873475) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327773)

Re:More intrusive ads for the same revenue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327849)

Paying not to see or hear ads?
I do that for music [spotify.com] .

The service is available for free in a bunch of countries, provided that you have an invite (and they're easy to get).
By free, I mean I get to listen to Ogg Vorbis -q5 music, licensed from the big labels, with more smaller labels to come, in return for listening to a 30 second ad every twenty to thirty minutes.

Now, me actually liking the service, wanting to see it succeed, I pay roughly $12 per month in order to have the ads removed.

I'm sure there are people out there balking at the thought of paying a few bucks to remove ads from a service, but really -- it's less than the cost of two QP Cheese meals per month, and the service itself is outstanding.

Right now, I have some 2.16 million songs covering a whole lot of genres from the '40s up until things yet to be released this year (paying subscribers occasionally get to listen to entire albums a few weeks before street release).

Could the service be better? Absolutely; it could have more songs and somewhat higher quality (I have the bandwidth to handle FLAC or other lossless formats, so that would be nice), but I figure my monetary contribution means the company gets more revenue compared to the ad solution, and they can spend it improving the service.

After they've properly tackled the music service, they'll add music videos, TV shows and movies.

If I have a choice between seeing and hearing ads on this service, or subscribing to have the ads removed, I will do so.

The execution from the entire Spotify team has been nothing short of excellent.
They've got the music industry on board, and they're *USING P2P TECHNOLOGY*

Ludde of uTorrent fame is one of their p2p developers, so the music industry is now actually working with one of their traditional enemies.

In the interest of full disclosure, my relation to the service is only as a customer.
A rather satisfied customer, at that.

Re:More intrusive ads for the same revenue? (1)

N1AK (864906) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327953)

I'm glad to see you're actually looking at the issue and trying to think of possible solutions.

A large proportion of technically capable web users look on ads purely as an annoyance that will 'never' be of benefit to them. They may well be right, most however are happy to ignore the site owners choice by blocking these adverts.

Over the years I have collected a very large amount of information on the visitors to the websites I control, and I have tested a range of measures related to people who avoid adverts. Everything from simply asking users not to use ad-blocking software to outright refusing access if they do.

What I have found over this time is that even on the most technical of sites (where use of ad-blockers was highest) it was always beneficial to block the blockers. The method changed depending on content and user profiling but it always helped the site financially and never hurt page exposure in the mid-long term.

Why is this relevant? Because I and no doubt 1001 other people know this and are creating software that can be used by site administrators to achieve the same thing, and in the long term this kind of thing is going to become more common.

usefulness and trust (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326889)

these are the 2 things online advertising need to work on. if i see an ad on tv it's automaticly more trust worthy than an online ad. they also need to make ads more targeted WITHOUT invading my privacy, because at the end of the day ad blocking is going to win that arms race.

how can they make them targeted with out cookies etc? easy, only advertise on relivant website and use facebooks vote up down style. ads that are annoying to the web sites users can be weeded out.

Re:usefulness and trust (1)

the_womble (580291) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327165)

at the end of the day ad blocking is going to win that arms race

My comment further up partly covers this. How are ad blockers going to filter out advertorial?

If that is all that works, then that will be what people do to make money.

there's a fallacy in there (2, Informative)

sxpert (139117) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326891)

We've had a few hundred years to learn to monetize print, over 75 years to monetize TV, and, most importantly, millennia to build business models based on scarcity.

thing is, there's no scarcity any more, or, I should rather say, the scarcity is not in the resources themselves, but rather on the sharing of the token called money used to obtain goods and services.
The current monetary system based on debt creates virtual scarcity, and doesn't really mean anything anymore. it's time to evolve.

http://thezeitgeistmovement.com/ [thezeitgeistmovement.com]

Re:there's a fallacy in there (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327001)

The very next line in the quote touched on that:

In contrast, our collective effort to monetize post-scarcity digital media have only just begun.

Web ads have themselves to blame (5, Insightful)

istartedi (132515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326899)

I tried to let the model work, but after they finally started using Flash tricks to display pop-ups, I finally used the "nuclear option". Whats that? The hosts file. I call it the nuclear option because it takes out unobtrusive ads along with the nasty ones. I really didn't want to do it, but the web advertising industry left me no choice.

If major web sites ever decide to adopt a code of ethics, whereby additional window spawning, interstitials, and other obtrusive ads are barred, I'll stop using hosts.

Really, it worked fine for dead tree print guys, there's no reason it can't work for you. I don't even mind cookies. It was actually kind of cool when Yahoo started showing me ads for IC chips and network cards. Maybe they're still trying to do that, but I'll never know; because some worthless X-10 popup weenie is being blocked by my hosts file.

Get it? Is ANYBODY listening?

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (3, Insightful)

shashark (836922) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326959)

"Get it? Is ANYBODY listening?"

No.

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327017)

But you replied, so you must have been listening at least a little bit.

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327267)

Aww man... I missed it. What happened?

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (1)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327115)

AdBlock+ with EasyList USA seems to work okay for me. A HOSTS file just seems too hard to maintain. Plus, on some sites (Slashdot. RCGroups, and HeliFreak) I actually *want* to allow ads.

After AdBlock, I think the next logical step would be Privoxy. It probably takes a bit of time to setup and configure, but it works across all browsers equally well.

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327157)

Google.

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327623)

Quite. I have no problem with google ads as they are relevant, not annoying and don't interfere with browsing.

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (1)

the_womble (580291) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327215)

With the issues with Flash cookies and the annoyance of Flash ads, Flash is pretty user hostile. If it was not for Youtube and similar I would uninstall it.

If everyone did this, then any site that is big enough will switch to direct ad sales and serve the ads off the same domain as the content - this happens to an extent already.

Does your hosts file include ad networks that have good policies about not using annoying ads? Google, for example, does not do inter-sitals or popups, and their video ads only play if you click on a play button.

Re:Web ads have themselves to blame (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327653)

There's a thing called "flashblock"... google for it.

That's an assumption (4, Interesting)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326939)

So the page itself is just one very small slice of an unbounded media experience in which a nearly infinite number of media objects are scrambling for a vanishingly small sliver of your attention. ...

competing to take you elsewhere immediately once you're done consuming whatever it is that you came to that page for

That assumes you even saw, or had the ability to see the ad in the first place. I block popups, surf anonymously via a disposable OS (virtualization), and use Firefox with Adblock Plus. My exposure to actual advertisements is extraordinarily minimal. I almost forgot they existed till this article came out.

Most people are not much different either. I suspect the value of the web advertisement is going down because the number of eyeballs actually seeing them is in a free fall. When advertisement campaigns cannot deliver any meaningful increases in sales or leads then their value must go down.

If people are not seeing the ads, how can it possibly lead to a sale, lead, click-thru, click-on, whatever, blah blah blah

Re:That's an assumption (1)

linzeal (197905) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327009)

I can't remember a time in the past 9 years I did not have a proxy blocking a list of ad servers. I immediately close any website that has anything moving on a page as well. That sex toys in the shape of dead president's wives genitalia.

Re:That's an assumption (2, Funny)

Inner_Child (946194) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327031)

That sex toys in the shape of dead president's wives genitalia.

Does the fact that "Nancy Reagan" was the first thought to pop into my head mean I have problems?

Re:That's an assumption (1)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327107)

Does the fact that "Nancy Reagan" was the first thought to pop into my head and I grabbed the box of tissues mean I have problems too?

Re:That's an assumption (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327171)

My exposure to actual advertisements is extraordinarily minimal. I almost forgot they existed till this article came out.

Adblock got the story from three days ago?

Re:That's an assumption (1)

Repossessed (1117929) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327793)

I very much doubt that most people are seeing the ads. Most people do not even know its possible to block them. Certain demographics (IE, nerds) are going to block them in real numbers of course, but I can't imagine there's much money in marketing to nerds anyway (or /. would be worth a hell of a lot more than it is right now).

As for my part, I finally got adblock when shitily coded ads started causing crashes after Flash 10 was released. I actually like seeing ads, since I sometimes get the really bizarre stuff, but I have to be able to load the page.

Re:That's an assumption (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327851)

Most people are not much different either.

You mean, your exposure to actual people is extraordinarily minimal and you almost forgot they existed till this article came out?

Re:That's an assumption (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26328129)

If you think that most people are going anywhere near the extent you say you are, then I think it's a lot more likely that you need to broaden your social circle.

As a former Internet marketer (4, Informative)

Zerth (26112) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326953)

I always get a kick out of these sorts of articles.

Advertising on the internet comes from the same premises as advertising anywhere else. Either you are building awareness or you are inciting the viewer to action, preferably both.

You buy ads based solely on if they are acheiving those two objectives. The value of an ad is from that alone. If your ads don't perform, pay less or stop. If they succeed, keep paying or even pay more to guarantee that they will continue to do so.

Sure, you can do interactive ad games, popups, popunders, little folding corner things, etc, but who cares unless your name sticks in their mind or it causes them to buy your stuff.

Sure, website operators will plaster their pages with ads, but who cares as long as your name stands out and people buy your stuff.

---

The main benefit for online ads over any other kind of ad is that the advertiser can have enormous feedback on the success of the ad that would normally take hundreds of hours of focus groups and thousands of dollars of wasted money.

The key failing of online ads is that advertisers are morons that think that internet ads are some magical moneymaking device that will work by itself. You have to use that wonderful deluge of information to guide your purchases and campaigns.

If advertisers, as a whole, stay ignorant, the market will boom and crash. Just like ignorant stock traders, just like any herd of morons that think they've found a golden goose and then cook it.

As someone who uses the internet and hates ads (4, Funny)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327007)

I ignored whatever it is you just said. You're probably used to that though.

Re:As a former Internet marketer (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327565)

100% Correct. As a developer working at an online ad agency, the one thing that online advertising campaigns give you is accountability. In a down economy, you want to make the best of your money. When advertisers spend marketing dollars on television, radio, print ads, billboards, etc., there is very little insight into how well that money is working out for them.

When you spend your money online, with strong strategy and analytics, you can see what exactly is working and what isn't. You can take that data and optimize your website and campaigns, whether they are display ads, paid search, or organic.

If anything, companies will increase their online advertising budgets.

Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads? (3, Interesting)

Micah (278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326957)

I've been surfing the web for at least 12 years. I've probably hit dozens of ad-infested pages per day during that time. I've probably seen tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of ads.

I can't remember a single time when I actually purchased something because of a web page ad.

I may have been influenced a bit due to a few of them, but actual purchase that I wouldn't have made otherwise? If so I have forgotten about it.

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

mbyte (65875) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326975)

Hm,
      I did discover thinkgeek from advertisements on /. and i did buy some stuff from them in the past, so yes, i did purchase something because of a web ad.

(to be honest, it was a while back when ads were more funny/static/interesting and noone was using adblockers ...)

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26326987)

You must have never been drunk and horny at 3 am.

I swear the advertisement for the Britney Spears sex tape practically took the wallet out my pocket by itself and started entering the information into the boxes. Then it's friends showed up.

Now I got a 3-inch VISA bill.

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327113)

Now I got a 3-inch VISA bill.

There's a cure for that, but it's rather costly.

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

Bill Dog (726542) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327271)

If Lorena Bobbitt was his wife, she'd simply cut off his "credit".

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

Hecatonchires (231908) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327411)

Meme-necromancy is evil

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

Atros81 (1445231) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327021)

I've been surfing the web for at least 12 years. I've probably hit dozens of ad-infested pages per day during that time. I've probably seen tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of ads.

I can't remember a single time when I actually purchased something because of a web page ad.

I may have been influenced a bit due to a few of them, but actual purchase that I wouldn't have made otherwise? If so I have forgotten about it.

If you have been influenced by advertising, then the advertising has worked, plain and simple. It may have been something that you would purchase anyhow, but how would you know you wanted that specific brand, or its particular strengths versus it's competitors? Now, you may have other factors that may influence you to NOT chose a particular product, (obnoxious advertising being one of those).

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

billsf (34378) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327069)

No, never! If something gets through my filters I will make it a point to NEVER buy from the company that "placed" the ad. I can make one exception: Those are the ads that come from the actual site. If they use flash or move in any way, that halts at once. You cannot easily focus when something is moving.

Some may argue that ads keep the net alive. (Yes servers that take targeted ads pay many times more.) To that I say, I keep the ad, but it never gets to my eyes. This serves a second purpose -- Advertisers in print and on TV often have the control of the editorial content. Its therefore worth periodically taking a quick check on who advertises. Chances are I don't buy from them and __certainly NOT__ if it is through the Internet!

BillSF

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327081)

There's plenty of places on the web that sell shit and advertise no-where else except on the web. How do you think people find them?

Via Amazon or Google searches? (1)

Mathinker (909784) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327335)

> How do you think people find them?

Well in my case, I typically find them via Google searches or because I found merchandise from them being sold via Amazon, either now or in the past.

(Although I don't use Adblock, I avoid a lot of ads using NoScript.)

Or was that what you meant?

Re:Via Amazon or Google searches? (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327777)

Getting your page rank up so people can find you is advertising too, but hey, I get what you're saying. That's not how your average joes find stuff. Those banner ads work.

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327181)

Do you recall ever buying anything because of a TV ad? Many people swear they never have, and yet TV ads work.

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (2, Insightful)

temcat (873475) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327867)

Most people who have are ashamed to admit it.

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (2, Insightful)

bradley13 (1118935) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327437)

I've been on the other side: setting up Google ads for two small companies. In one case, it did increase the web-traffic, but did not result in a single sale. In the other case, it has resulted in sales - but the total effect was very minimal.

This was with Google ads - which I suspect are among the most effective, because they are generally relevant to what the person was searching for. Even so, the results were marginal at best.

Web advertising would be more effective if there were less of it. Unfortunately, dropping prices mean dropping revenue, which will probably cause some sites to add even more adverts. Resulting in even less value, further price and revenue drops, and a vicious cycle is begun.

Even though all attempts to date have failed, I still think an effective micropayment system is the right answer...

Re:Anyone actually BUY anything because of web ads (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327811)

You've never bought anything from an ad, therefore they don't work. QED.

Oh, yet here we are, with people spending billions on web advertising... The fact they work is demonstrated by the fact that they're still around.

cf spam.

We in post-scarcity now? For real? (1)

Wrath0fb0b (302444) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326965)

If anything, the internet reminds me how scarce quality work (of whatever sort) really is. Being able to readily comb through all of it only makes that truth even more apparent.

Re:We in post-scarcity now? For real? (1)

giles hogben (1145597) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327387)

Yes that's it. The scarce commodity is the user's attention. The more people throw things at it, the less of a slice each one gets.

ad rates may fall down... (1)

crazybit (918023) | more than 5 years ago | (#26326971)

but internet will be much more used as business tool now that is time to drop costs. This would bring balance to the force.

Re:ad rates may fall down... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327177)

This would bring balance to the force.

Little Annie is that you?! Meesa miss you long time!

International Nature of the Internet (4, Interesting)

RotateLeftByte (797477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327027)

Has left pretty well all these Ad merchants behind.
If I'm browsing some site in say the USA and I'm based in Europe I don't give a **** about ads for US services (and most products come to think of it). They just don't have any relevance to me whatsoever and just consumes the bandwith/download quota I PAY FOR every month.

Very few sites check your IP for location and serve you up an Ad free page if you are outside their target location on this wonderful planet of ours.

Don't get me started on the ever increasing number of sites that are replicating the sort of things that doubleclick does. Last month I added 78 new ones to my hosts files to block.
AFAIAC (As far as I am concerned), these people are signing their own death warrant. Eventually people will say 'Enough is enough' and start browsing only those sites with a reasonable (or zero) levels of ads. One site I visited recently had over 20, yes 20 other sites it was pulling ads and other crap from. Why do they do this? Greed obviously.
This business model is surely untennable for the future. Sorta like the 'sub-prime mortgages' that were sold to far to many inappropriate people.

Re:International Nature of the Internet (0)

pandronic (1275276) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327299)

It's really cool to get content and pay nothing, isn't it? Now seriously, man, do you expect a site owner to pay from his pocket for hosting and editors? And what is his motivation to do all this? Shouldn't he earn something from his work or investment? How do you expect sites to survive if you block the ads? By selling tshirts with the site logo? By selling a subscription that no one will pay for? And the sad thing is you'll probably be surprised if one day Slashdot will be no more.

Re:International Nature of the Internet (1)

RotateLeftByte (797477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327375)

I did say a reasonable amount of targetted advertising is ok.
However if you get sites that are in my opinion almost content free because the adverts take up more than 50% of the page space then the laws of diminishing returns take over. Many of the IT product review sites IMHO have gone beyong the 50%. You end up getting frustrated because the review spreads over many pages when it did not need to. You end up being unable to see the wood for the trees.

Don't forget that repeat site visitors are more likely to be customers than one timers.
With the average attention span of Americans getting less and less every year and the time people are willing to wait for a page to be loaded reducing annually, there will be a tipping point where simple the level of advertising is such that people won't wait for the real content of the page to be loaded before moving on.
As is a favourite comment here on /.

Move on, nothing to see here.

Because the Ads are still loading when the use says 'sod this I'm off elsewhere'.
There are now many sites have reaced this tipping point.
I am aware that companies need Ad revenue. But with all Communication there is Communication and 'Effective communication'. Too many ads mean that the message/product/news/service being offere by the site is lost in the noice generated by the Ads. This is surely not effective communication.

Unless, the site is there just for the Ads and not the content? There could/probably/are sites just like this around today.

 

Re:International Nature of the Internet (1)

Hecatonchires (231908) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327435)

I think he's saying that if the ad were relevant, he'd be more likely to click, thus supporting that free content.

He's also saying if the adhost can't serve up a relevant ad, serve nothing at all. I know I browse with adblock because I'm on a quota (upload AND download) and I'd rather not spend my bytes on a (for example) dating service in Tucson, or pizza delivery in San Francisco.

Re:International Nature of the Internet (4, Insightful)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 5 years ago | (#26328097)

It's really cool to get content and pay nothing, isn't it? Now seriously, man, do you expect a site owner to pay from his pocket for hosting and editors? And what is his motivation to do all this? Shouldn't he earn something from his work or investment? How do you expect sites to survive if you block the ads?

Stop being so melodramatic please. Your make it sound like that if I don't look at 50 web advertisements in a day your gonna blend a cute little kitten.

I hate to point this out to you, but if you had a website that was supporting five kids and fifty little other kids in Africa and my eyeballs made all the difference each month ... well then fuck it. Seriously. Fuck the whole thing and I don't care. Let them starve. I don't give a fucking shit. If I could insure world peace by having my nuts hit with a ball peen hammer 10 times a day I might consider it, but I won't do the same just to allow some web site owners the ability to keep doing what they are doing. Yes, I do equate web advertisements with getting my balls traumatized on a daily basis.

I am not flaming you either here and this is not a personal attack . Am I little excited about this post? Yeah, a little. But, please seriously step back a moment and try to understand what I am going to say because I am not that different than most people on the Internet. I may be an 11, but most people are >=7 on this.

Please try to understand what I am saying. I HATE ADVERTISEMENTS. PURE BLACK SEETHING HATRED. They just get in the way of me being able to enjoy content and to enrich my life with said content. Think about that. I don't watch movie previews on the DVD or even in the theater. I walk in 8 minutes late. I don't even DVR anymore since the bastards sued the automatic commercial skip out of existence. I torrent all the television shows on TV (in 720p even) and watch them without ad content and I might even stop that since complete twats like the Sci-Fi channel are putting whole "footers" in during the middle of Stargate Atlantis that completely distract from the whole damn show. They are going to go broke anyways since Stargate Atlantis is over and the super genius media executives canceled such shows like FireFly and FarScape. I mean seriously, what's left that is worth sitting through ad banners during the shows and commercials between? But I digress....

I will never ever submit to advertisers. It is fundamentally dishonest as a practice. It insults our collective intelligence and provides absolutely no useful information about a service or a product. It is the equivalent of a woman flashing her titties at a bunch of guys to manipulate their wallets out of their pockets like a master illusionist, except 1/1,000,000 as enjoyable. If one learns about advertising and marketing they quickly find it is all about how to manipulate the consumer. How does that sound like an evolved practice worthy of humanity and its potential?

When I want or need something, I will seek the product out. Review sites, consumer reports, anecdotal information, manufacturer websites, etc. At least then the majority of the information will have 1,000,000 times more truth and reality in it than any single advertisement ever could. Period. Truth and advertisements mix about as well as sodium and water.

Web Based Advertisements are the equivalent of the Internet with a case of raging herpes. You lament that only way in your opinion to keep the Internet alive is to submit and accept that herpes is the way of life. Well not for me my friend. Sorry. I would rather not have the websites and their content. That is the cure and I have partaken of the sweet elixir.

By selling tshirts with the site logo? By selling a subscription that no one will pay for? And the sad thing is you'll probably be surprised if one day Slashdot will be no more.

Exactly that. Sell T-Shirts and other paraphernalia like the Penny Arcade, and many such others. I personally find Penny Arcade so damn enjoyable I would buy their strips just like I have bought some of newspaper comic strips at a bookstore.

Subscriptions? Absolutely. If you create worthy content the subscribers will come. Slashdot will be no more when the average Slashdotter cannot find enjoyment in the "News For Nerds" and "Stuff that Matters". When the witty, vitriolic, and sometimes intelligent and insightful posts no longer entertain and enrich our lives. Until then, I except that donation sites will thrive as long as they continue to provide great value to their audiences.

There are other ways to obtain revenue for a website other than advertisements. They are just the easiest to obtain and provide the least (negative actually) value to the audience.

AND FOR THE RECORD

1) I have nearly 2,000 pages left of my 4,000 page subscription here on Slashdot and I block all their ads whether or not they ever wanted me to do it.

2) I may torrent, but I have a blockbuster/netflix membership and I add the season DVD's for the shows that I download.

3) I actually own several shows on DVD.

4) I have supported various organizations both off and on the Internet and will continue to do so as long as I am able.

   

Re:International Nature of the Internet (1)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 5 years ago | (#26328125)

Until then, I except that donation sites will thrive as long as they continue to provide great value to their audiences.

Until then, I expect that donation sites will thrive as long as they continue to provide great value to their audiences. fixed

I know it's a faux pas to reply to your own post but it's a little known fact that if you correct your own post a spelling/grammar Nazi dies off in the distance :) Couldn't resist.

Re:International Nature of the Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327545)

AFAIAC (As far as I am concerned)

I've often wondered what the point in people writing these acronyms and then explaining them immediately after and then never reusing it again. IANAL is another common culprit.

Re:International Nature of the Internet (2, Funny)

Gandalf_Greyhame (44144) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327945)

AFAIAC (As far as I am concerned)

I've often wondered what the point in people writing these acronyms and then explaining them immediately after and then never reusing it again. IANAL is another common culprit.

it's I ANAL - you missed a space... it means goatse

Re:International Nature of the Internet (1)

dargaud (518470) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327593)

I have this hunch that the first tech collapse was in part caused by web ads. Many businesses then had no clearer business plan than "put something on the web and make money off of it", which often turned out to be "put some content user want, and ad some advertisement".

But marketing people IMHO have always greatly overvalued the effect of traditional print/billboard/TV/etc ads. Only on those media there's no way to verify how much extra products they sell. They've been riding on that to justify their very existence for ever.

Only with web adds, you know exactly how many people saw the ads, where they were, how many clicked and how many made the final purchase. That is to say: zero or just about. And then the whole thing collapsed. Only now, instead of devaluating ads in other media which should be the obvious deduction, we are again building sites based on this no-good strategy.

I know, I have a website with AdSense and in two years ad income has been divided by 7 with no noticeable change in viewership. And I also surf with FF and adblock because the web is unpalatable without it. I don't know how to put my money where my mouth is.

Re:International Nature of the Internet (2, Funny)

shoemilk (1008173) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327847)

Very few sites check your IP for location and serve you up an Ad free page if you are outside their target location on this wonderful planet of ours.

Even that doesn't work. I'm an American working in Japan and browsing American sites half the ads I see are for Green Cards (in Japanese)

Web ads will continue, for the same reason as spam (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327065)

Web advertising will continue, for the same reason that we still have spam today.

Despite the increasing evidence that it doesn't work, people will still pay to get their ads in front of people. And advertising companies will be happy to take that money.

There is still scarcity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327105)

Before scarcity was defined by the medium -- a TV's dimensions or the number of pages you wanted to print. Now scarcity is the user's attention.

And a way to get most of that is to reduce the number of ads on a page and just have a few prominent ones. Or maybe have a daily sponsor. TV used to be that way (Exxon Mobile opera hour or something?).

The trouble is there's no payment system for a good site or the number of ads on a page. Right now payment is just based on page views and clicks, which means the webmaster is inclined to a) make multi-page articles and b) put dozens of ads on a page. If that model were fixed so that there were higher payouts to better quality sites then things might improve

*Facepalm* (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327111)

Lots of confusion about terminology.
Half the people here didn't understand the article, the other half believe it was about something else based on the summary.

This was about the reduction of traditional advertising budgets (a rehash of stats) with a non-sequitor on how it might affect advertising online (with no stats).
Did they even think to mention that the money has simply shifted from print/tv media to online?
No, this is largely a attempt at fear-mongering about the economy.

Web ads are getting killed....by my FF extensions (2, Insightful)

VinylRecords (1292374) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327199)

I don't know how many different extensions and add-on installs I've added to FireFox but I know off the top of my head that the overwhelming majority of them are designed specifically to eliminate or block advertisements.

And by advertisements I am not just limiting the scope to pop-up ads, but google ads, banners, and ad sponsored links and polls.

Any image that is from an ad shows up 404, every pop-up is blocked, and any link to an ad shows up 404 including sites that redirect to advertisements.

The less ads the better the internet experience is. I am not sympathetic at all to advertising and spam-marketing companies when there revenue falls.

Re:Web ads are getting killed....by my FF extensio (4, Insightful)

Zymergy (803632) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327403)

Anyone care to guess why Google's CHROME has no ability to use plugins/add-ons?
(And, I'd actually use Chrome if I could BLOCK THE DAMN ADS!!! Who cares if Chrome renders this well and/or is faster... CAN IT BLOCK ADS??, No?... OK! Fine... So, where's my FF icon? )

Therefore I use FireFox 3.x with NoScript, AdBlock Pro, and Flashblock installed...
(Sure, I find myself whitelisting certain sites often... but that is the way it should be!)
Try reading certain sites with IE7 at netbook resolutions and you will love FF with the ad killing plugins/add-ons....

Re:Web ads are getting killed....by my FF extensio (1)

secondhand_Buddah (906643) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327907)

Care to place a wager on whether Google will allow plugins that block advertising in their browser?

more suppliers means lower price (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327203)

Audience attention is still scarce -- the Internet hasn't changed this.
Print, radio and TV all had high fixed costs. As a result, the number of advertising space suppliers was low. When suppliers -- in this case, websites -- increase, supplier power decreases relative to buyer power. Prices fall.

Re:more suppliers means lower price (1)

secondhand_Buddah (906643) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327929)

This is what the pay-per-click model was designed for - To counter the falling prices, with a higher quality conversion ratio from click-through generated leads.

blame me!!! (1)

advocate_one (662832) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327205)

I clicked on an ad once and bought something...

I have personal (i.e. anecdotal) evidence of... (4, Interesting)

WoTG (610710) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327307)

We spend a few hundred a month on Google Adwords (both on search results pages and the 3rd party "content" pages) on a fairly niche set of terms for our web based bingo card generator [print-bingo.com] . I've noticed recently that our bids, which I haven't changed in months, have bought us both higher ad placements and lower costs per click. Similarly, the advertising revenue from the publisher side of AdSense (ads we show) on the same website have dipped a bit. All of these hint that other people have pulled out of the market. Granted, you have to take this with a grain of salt -- we're in a very niche market.

Still, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that in this economy, overall, more people are going to cut back on advertising budgets rather than expand. I think that in the case of Google, it's hidden by their growing market share and the growth of the Internet.

Re:I have personal (i.e. anecdotal) evidence of... (1)

secondhand_Buddah (906643) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327951)

Cutting back on advertising is the worst mistake a business that relies on advertising as their primary market communications medium can make.

In fact the correct strategy is to increase the spend, while possibly altering the message to suite the financial mood.
If you need to cut costs, cut them in other areas of your business - not on your advertising spend.

AdBlock and AdWords (1)

Hobadee (787558) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327337)

Whats an ad? ...No, really - I haven't seen any ads online in 5+ years thanks to AdBlock! Before adblock it was an /etc/hosts blacklist. I am to the point that if I visit any site I frequent on another computer without AdBlock I am surprised to find out that yes, ads still do exist.

On another note, if I am looking to buy something but I don't know where to get it, Google AdWords is one of the first places I look. I am always pleased at how out-of-the-way and un-obtrusive it is when I don't need it, (not to mention loads quickly since it's all text) but how useful it is when I do need it. Thanks Google for not making us "hit the target" or "spank the monkey" or whatever other crappy annoying flash ad is the latest fad.

-Hobadee

anti-globalism? (0)

cliffski (65094) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327429)

A kdawson post from anti-globalism?
gimme a break, you might as well just rename the site to 'socialistworker.org' if you are going to take the anti-capitalist rants like this seriously.

a mental block when it comes to the Web (1)

Bill Dog (726542) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327459)

We've had a few hundred years to learn to monetize print, over 75 years to monetize TV,...

And yet they apply little to none of that knowledge to the WWW. Take TV, first off: You tune to the beginning of a show you want to watch, and periodically it's interrupted by a string of several commercials. Yet web adverting only uses interstitial ads at the beginning when you first go there. It does technically get an ad hit, but you immediately leave and see no others there. (Just like if you tuned in for something a minute after 8pm, and they were still running ads -- you expect some of the content first before seeing them having to pay some bills.) If marketing people actually owned dictionaries and ever looked up what "interstitial" means, they'd put a flash animation of several ads in sequence between each page of an article. That way like TV ads, we could just browse (surf) to another site (channel) while the ads were playing.

Or how about print ads: You're reading an article and turn to the next page and there's a full-page ad, you mentally skip it and resume reading on the next page. So instead of ruining the content by littering the article space with tons of crappy little things, break the content into sections that can fit on most peoples' screens in one screenfull without scrolling, and then randomly place between pages 0-3 ad pages to be clicked thru. (Random to discourage development of automated ad-skipping schemes.) Web site operators look too whorish allowing all kinds of tacky, vibrating and jumping shit to be placed all over their sites. As if they don't care about what kind of image they maintain. And neither do the advertisers. I don't know why they didn't just stick to what they know works, and what the public is already accustomed to.

Advertising is cyclical ... (1)

Aceticon (140883) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327531)

... so when the economy is up advertising is up and when the economy is down advertising is down.

When companies are struggling to make it to the next fiscal year, the first thing they cut is their marketing budget (surprise, surprise)

Advertising on the Internet is affected just like other advertising - so it's going down at the moment and will go up when the economy starts to pick up again.

All these explanations about how stuff done via the Internet is somehow special are just a throwback to the previous bubble when loads of "consultants" and "experts" made a living out of spewing bullshit about how the Internet was special and the "growth" it drove was permanent and would keep going forever (i think most of us remember how that went ...)

When Adblock eats too much into revenue... (1)

abigsmurf (919188) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327533)

Ad Providers will simply come up with ways that are impossible to work around.

One solution : local caching. Have a php script download randomly named images or html files in a semi-randomly named folder. Can't see how it'd be possible to block the ads, especially if the html is put in a page via a php include. Obviously though it would require a fair bit of trust to give an ad provider write access to a folder on your server.

Re: How Web Advertising May Go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26327697)

Away.

Ads as Micropayments (1)

secondhand_Buddah (906643) | more than 5 years ago | (#26327881)

I think inadvertently, Ads have become the micro-payment system that was bandied about a few years ago.

The mistake the model had initially, was seeing the user as the client, where in fact the user's viewing is the product for sale - much like traditional print media advertising. The micro-payments are happening on a pay-per-click or pay-per-view basis.

As Print media slides further down the slope of obsolescence, online advertising will become more relevant as a means of gaining exposure to marketing messages.

The obvious breakthrough in this arena was context sensitive advertising pioneered by the likes of Google. I can see this becoming a more refined model and process. We are also going to see and hear more embedded advertising in the streaming media content.
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