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Adcritic Shuts Down

chrisd posted more than 12 years ago | from the no-more-slowly-downloadable-ads-for-you dept.

News 294

punt (among way too many others) writes: "Adcritic, the archive for Television and Radio Ads, is no more. Read the reason why here"

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294 comments

GPL - Intellectual Protection or Intellectual Thef (-1)

egg troll (515396) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722410)

Hello,

Consulting for several large companies, I'd always done my work on Windows. Recently however, a top online investment firm asked us to do some work using Linux. The concept of having access to source code was very appealing to us, as we'd be able to modify the kernel to meet our exacting standards which we're unable to do with Microsoft's products.

Although we met several technical challenges along the way (specifically, Linux's lack of Token Ring support and the fact that we were unable to defrag its ext2 file system), all in all the process went smoothly. Everyone was very pleased with Linux, and we were considering using it for a great deal of future internal projects.

So you can imagine our suprise when we were informed by a lawyer that we would be required to publish our source code for others to use. It was brought to our attention that Linux is copyrighted under something called the GPL, or the Gnu Protective License. Part of this license states that any changes to the kernel are to be made freely available. Unfortunately for us, this meant that the great deal of time and money we spent "touching up" Linux to work for this investment firm would now be available at no cost to our competitors.

Furthermore, after reviewing this GPL our lawyers advised us that any products compiled with GPL'ed tools - such as gcc - would also have to its source code released. This was simply unacceptable.

Although we had planned for no one outside of this company to ever use, let alone see the source code, we were now put in a difficult position. We could either give away our hard work, or come up with another solution. Although it was tought to do, there really was no option: We had to rewrite the code, from scratch, for Windows 2000.

I think the biggest thing keeping Linux from being truly competitive with Microsoft is this GPL. Its draconian requirements virtually guarentee that no business will ever be able to use it. After my experience with Linux, I won't be recommending it to any of my associates. I may reconsider if Linux switches its license to something a little more fair, such as Microsoft's "Shared Source". Until then its attempts to socialize the software market will insure it remains only a bit player.

Thank you for your time.

wapwapwapwapwapwap SPPOOOOOGGGEEE (-1)

KingAzzy (320268) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722449)

Egg Troll you are a DISGUSTING TWERPISH FUCKNUGGET. How DARE you get first post over me?

Your slashcrap tyranny will come to an end soon. JonKatz awaits.

DEAR CMDRTACO (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722470)

Please IP ban this troll. His trolls are overused and have become stale and simply not funny anymore.

thank you

DEAR CMDRTACO (-1)

egg troll (515396) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722518)

Please IP ban this AC. His posts are lame and have become stale and simply not funny anymore.

thank you

i hace teh frist post bitnizTcheZ11!!! LOLOLOL!!!~ (-1)

KingAzzy (320268) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722415)

co3m t0 my f7p d000dz!11! i hace all teh mad phat w4re3z d00d!!11~~~LOLOLOLOLOL!!!~~

propz to my bitchez in ingelwood

werd to my nigga daz

yo homey sup

FREE MUMIA

they did free mumia (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722430)

they threw out his death sentence today.

Re:they did free mumia (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722448)

The judge ordered a new sentencing hearing. The conviction stands. Chances are he will be resentenced to death.

Re:they did free mumia (-1)

five dollar troll (541247) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722464)

they overturned the death sentence and ruled it out as a possibility in the new sentencing. The most he can get now is life in prison.

Re:they did free mumia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722486)

Only if they fail to conduct a hearing in 180 days or less. If they do so within the time limit the death penalty is still applicable.

Re:they did free mumia (-1)

Fucky the troll (528068) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722597)

Just bribe his inmates to choke the fucker when he sleeps. Behold the world, minus one filthy thieving crim. Fucking freeloading bastards, all of them wanting something for nothing.

Re:i hace teh frist post bitnizTcheZ11!!! LOLOLOL! (-1)

Ralph JewHater Nader (450769) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722434)

That nigger needs to fry.

Re:i hace teh frist post bitnizTcheZ11!!! LOLOLOL! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722485)

for once, i agree with you... but he needs to fry because he is a MURDERER!! and anybody who kills an innocent victim or even a POLICE OFFICER (ENFORCERERS OF THE LAW) must be executed at once

Re:i hace teh frist post bitnizTcheZ11!!! LOLOLOL! (-1)

KingAzzy (320268) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722617)

he didnt kill nobody you filthy cracker scum

That sucks (0)

core10k (196263) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722416)

-.- They were pretty damned cool.

I'm really gonna miss them (1, Redundant)

Kris.Felscher (228214) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722417)

what a great site, it's a shame to see them go

Another Stupid Idea? (-1, Troll)

bish (84411) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722419)

Great, we buy gadets to get out of watching advertisements and some idiot thinks he can make money by saving them? I say be-gone!

Re:Another Stupid Idea? (2, Insightful)

Miles (79172) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722437)

In a culture where advertisements are as much entertainment as the shows to which they are attached, they provide a service like any other entertainment review site.

Re:Another Stupid Idea? (1)

kellin (28417) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722453)

Nah. Adcritic was fun. It allowed you to peruse and enjoy the handful of good commercials without having to sit through the painful ones (like the rotating world land rover commercial, UGH). Nothing wrong with an entertaining website at all.. and thats exactly what adcritic was. I'm sad to see it go, even if I really havent paid attention to it in the last year or so...

this one's for kathryn!!! (-1)

five dollar troll (541247) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722420)

this nearly-first post is for CmdrTaco's ex-girlfriend Kathryn...mother of one dead fetus...and whore to a nation. We salute you, Kathryn!!! May your whoring exploits be merry and many!!!

Re:this one's for kathryn!!! (-1)

core10k (196263) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722432)

Yes! YES! [the country is Canada, the city is Ottawa. Use this information wisely, oh great troll.]

C: A Dead Language? (-1)

egg troll (515396) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722425)

Gentlemen, the time has come for a serious discussion on whether or not to continue using C for serious programming projects. As I will explain, I feel that C needs to be retired, much the same way that Fortran, Cobol and Perl have been. Furthermore, allow me to be so bold as to suggest a superior replacement to this outdated language.

To give you a little background on this subject, I was recently asked to develop a client/server project on a Unix platform for a Fortune 500 company. While I've never coded in C before I have coded in VB for fifteen years, and in Java for over ten, I was stunned to see how poorly C fared compared to these two, more low-level languages.

C's biggest difficulty, as we all know, is the fact that it is by far one of the slowest languages in existance, especially when compared to more modern languages such as Java. Although the reasons for this are varied, the main reasons seems to be the way C requires a programmer to laboriously work with chunks of memory.

Requiring a programmer to manipulate blocks of memory is a tedious way to program. This was satisfactory back in the early days of coding, but then again, so were punchcards. By using what are called "pointers" a C programmer is basically requiring the computer to do three sets of work rather than one. The first time requires the computer to duplicate whatever is stored in the memory space "pointed to" by the pointer. The second time requires it to perform the needed operation on this space. Finally the computer must delete the duplicate set and set the values of the original accordingly.

Clearly this is a horrendous use of resources and the chief reason why C is so slow. When one looks at a more modern (and a more serious) programming language like Java or, even better, Visual Basic, that lacks such archaic coding styles, one will also note a serious speed increase over C.

So what does this mean for the programming community? I think clearly that C needs to be abandonded. There are two candidates that would be a suitable replacement for it. Those are Java and Visual Basic.

Having programmed in both for many years, I believe that VB has the edge. Not only is it slightly faster than Java its also much easier to code in. I found C to be confusing, frightening and intimidating with its non-GUI-based coding style. Furthermore, I like to see the source code of the projects I work with. Java's source seems to be under the monopolistic thumb of Sun much the way that GCC is obscured from us by the marketing people at the FSF. Microsoft's "shared source" under which Visual Basic is released definately seems to be the most fair and reasonable of all the licenses in existance, with none of the harsh restrictions of the BSD license. It also lacks the GPLs requirement that anything coded with its tools becomes property of the FSF.

I hope to see a switch to VB very soon. I've already spoken with various luminaries in the *nix coding world and most are eager to begin to transition. Having just gotten off the phone with Mr. Alan Cox, I can say that he is quite thrilled with the speed increases that will occur when the Linux kernel is completely rewritten in Visual Basic. Richard Stallman plans to support this, and hopes that the great Swede himself, Linus Torvaldis, won't object to renaming Linux to VB/Linux. Although not a C coder himself, I'm told that Slashdot's very own Admiral Taco will support this on his web site.

Thank you for your time. Happy coding.

Re:C: A Dead Language? (-1)

Fucky the troll (528068) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722545)

Would you please post something original? How about a story involving Katz' sphincter and a million ants that've been specially trained to taco-snot? That'd be great I expect it on my desk first thing tomorrow morning super duper bye.

Re:C: A Dead Language? (-1)

egg troll (515396) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722666)

All my posts are my original work. I'm fucking at work right now. Christ! You try to walk someone through troubleshooting their DSL line and find a creative way to point out what a turd Slashdot is.

hmm (1)

mlong (160620) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722427)

Well obviously I am not them but I don't see why they could not have found a sponsor willing to donate their servers. I see it all the time at sites...like kuro5hin for example.

a problem waiting to happen (1, Insightful)

anon757 (265661) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722429)

I always thought of adcritic as a problem waiting to happen. On one side, there's the potential legal problems of showing copyrighted content (i still can't belive they never got sued), and on the other hand, there's the enormous expense of the bandwidth & storage space they would need. I will dearly miss ad critic, but am suprised they lasted this long.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (1)

filbo (147228) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722461)

Why would a copyright holder of an ad sue a site that was basically "broadcasting" their ad to people at no charge to the copyright holder. Ads aren't something you make money from by keeping them to yourself.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (4, Insightful)

jd142 (129673) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722587)

Why would a copyright holder have a problem? I can think of several:

1) Ads for related materials that actually have the affect of diminishing both brands. McDonald's doesn't want a Slimfast ad associated with its product. They don't want people to think that fast food makes you fat.

2) Ads for competitors. If adcritic (and I not saying they did this) showed a lame McDonald's ad and a really cool Burger King ad, McDonald's would be upset because it would appear as if the site were using McDonald's copyrighted material to both trash McD and advance BK.

3) Old ads that are either inappropriate, out dated, or reference an item that no longer exists. Let's pretend that a year ago, you had an ad for your FlightSim game that showed people flying their simulated planes into the WTC? Or showed someone bursting into a cockpit to play with the real controls? Would you want that ad up and associated with your company now? How about an ad that promises premiums for proof of purchases for a promotion that expired a year ago? You don't want people sending in the junk and then being mad at you because the promotion is over (yes, people are this stupid and as a company, you have to protect yourself against stupid people). Or maybe there's a commercial that says "look for the bright blue bottle" only you changed to bright green 2 months ago.

4) What if the adcritic site is really doggy and people think you can't afford a good server because your commercial doesn't run. Or worse yet, what if they call you for tech support when they can't see the picture. We all know the people who call tech support for even stupider things.

I'm not saying adcritic did any of this or that these ads were there in this format. I'm simply pointing out that there are very good reasons for companies to want to control how their ads are presented to people.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (1)

RazzleFrog (537054) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722667)

All excellent points but even in any of those cases a simple "cease and desist" letter would do the job. I don't see adcritic putting up a big fight.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (5, Insightful)

ncc74656 (45571) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722473)

I always thought of adcritic as a problem waiting to happen. On one side, there's the potential legal problems of showing copyrighted content (i still can't belive they never got sued)
What company, in its right mind, is going to complain about someone running its ads for free? They ordinarily pay big bucks to get the word out...AdCritic runs (OK, ran) their ads whenever someone wants (um...wanted) to see them.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722514)

Well, the type of company that shuts down fan web sites for using copyrighted material (think harry potter etc). They're just as good as commercials and they are being shut down. I could certianly see companies objecting to the low resolution that the ads are (were) shown in on adcritic. Also, I know they had to pull some of sony's playstation ads at one time.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722595)

Companies close fan sites because they want to drive people to their propaganda filled official sites.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (2)

bugg (65930) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722475)

Yeah, those ad agencies are really tough about unauthorized airplay. They want to make sure that only the stations that pay them for the right to air the ads air them...

A little common sense, that's all I ask.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (1, Redundant)

Boltmeyer (530940) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722521)

Uh, bugg.. Ad agencies pay stations to air their ads. Not the other way around. If stations paid for ads, then Fox would have nothing but beer, car, and bikini ads. (Sarcasm intended)

Re:a problem waiting to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722546)

Now I understand why people put those sarcasm tags around their comments.

Re:a problem waiting to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722600)

(Sarcasm intended)

Real pros don't need sarcasm tags. Kind of like the guy in the grandparent post.

Irony. (5, Funny)

bonzoesc (155812) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722435)

Oh well, I guess even adcritic couldn't stay alive, no matter how much advertising they got.

Shit (0, Troll)

yrrw (221020) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722436)

I hate this!!!

Boy this is really surprising! (0, Redundant)

IIOIOOIOO (517375) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722442)

I wonder why companies would possibly try to stop someone from attempting to make money from their intellectual property. I'd imagine that this was a situation where the MPAA had a brotherly talk with its foolish 'younger brother.' Something along the lines of.... 'So these guys are abusing you, eh? Let me show you how to fix them...'

Re:Boy this is really surprising! (2, Insightful)

Rhone (220519) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722537)

Thanks, that's one of the funnier examples of "I'm saying something completely stupid because I didn't click the link and read what was going on for myself" I've seen in a while.

archive.org (1)

milkme123 (302350) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722446)

Bleh.. The pages are still available at http://web.archive.org/*/www.adcritic.com , but all of the video content was at movies.adcritic.com or akami. :(

Surely someone mirrored the content..

Re:archive.org (2, Interesting)

diesel_jackass (534880) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722505)

i hope someone did.

where is everyone going to go after the next superbowl?

How to (maybe) get some of the movies. (1, Informative)

ahaning (108463) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722556)

Go to Google, type in www.adcritic.com. [ENTER]

Go to the Google Cache link, click it.

In the cached page, right-click and copy a URL that points to a commercial's page.

Go back to Google, paste that link in. [ENTER]

Go to the cached page for that commercial's page.

Some of the movies may still be up.

Their explanation? (1)

SetarconeX (160251) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722447)

I love that quote: "We still believe our business model will work, It'll just have to work for someone else?"

So close to admitting they suck as businessmen....yet still with some optimism. I like that.

I guess their bandwidth must have sputtered (1)

afree87 (102803) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722451)

They probably needed a T17 to transfer all those ads... why didn't they get the companies to pay for the bandwidth?

I don't think it would work (2, Insightful)

Juju (1688) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722542)

Companies pay adds to be out when they want them to. Anything outside this, probably does not interrest them

Besides, how do you want to implement this? Something like banner adds? A little pay each time somebody sees it?

I don't think companies would agree to pay for that.
First, it's hardly targeted: no control of when people see it or on who sees it (think in term of countries.)

Second, how could they measure the effect? This is very important in term of marketing: No way to measure the effect == no perception of benefit. If they can't see it, they won't pay for it. Why do you think banner adds flopped so badly?

Something along the lines could work if they made company pay to put their adds on-line, but do you think the site would still be successful?

I think the idea is doomed!

Have you noticed how many similar sites went down as soon as they started to be popular for their videos?

Dang (5, Insightful)

jhaberman (246905) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722454)

This is really too bad. Adcritic was one of those sites that I enjoyed, but never to the level of regular visitation. I suppose that is why they shut it down. I mean, seeing funny commercials you don't get at home is interesting, but for the average joe out there, who would want to pay for it? Not this joe. That's for sure.

Ya know what... I think this here internet thing is still evolving...

Jason

Re:Dang (1)

c0rtez (443072) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722647)

but for the average joe out there, who would want to pay for it? Not this joe...

Jason


Aw, man, i was hoping the J in jhaberman stood for "joe"

Incubus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722458)

"Grab the next motherfucker marmaduke who refuses to submit to these pelvic ostentations."

"I've stumbled upon a brain fart which melts away your molds!"

Is it the price of bandwidth? (5, Interesting)

TomatoMan (93630) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722459)

Is the price of bandwidth the biggest factor in the demise of so many dot-whatevers? I know my colo provider charges a bunch for bandwidth, so I'm afraid to host successful sites. The cost of the server isn't the big deal, nor the cost of maintenance. It's that you pay for every visit - even the spiders indexing you and spammers trolling for addresses.

If the cost of bandwidth is the main problem, is anybody anywhere trying to do anything about it? Who's at the top of the food chain here? What are their interests? Are there other ways they can be fed?

Re:Is it the price of bandwidth? (2)

jayhawk88 (160512) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722530)

Bandwidth/hosting costs certainly seem to be the most mentioned reason most sites close, at least those that become victims of their own success.

As for doing anything about it, I'm not sure what if anything can be done in the short term. Big Business owns and controls the fat pipes and backbones, and they sure as hell are going to try and make as much money as they can off of it. It'd probably take a new technology (true wireless?) at this point to wean off that tit.

Re:Is it the price of bandwidth? (2)

Otter (3800) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722606)

Is the price of bandwidth the biggest factor in the demise of so many dot-whatevers?

Forget dot-whatevers -- it's now gotten to the point where it's impossible to host a just-for-fun site once it gets sufficiently popular. Look at (I won't drive Lowtax further into debt by mentioning his site's name). People are willing to drop $10 a month on hosting for their vanity site, but they won't spend hundreds to keep it up once it becomes popular.

The tipping point is where banner ads are insufficient to pay for the bandwidth of a normal site (never mind a monster like AdCritic). I think you're right -- what's necessary is for access providers to realize that growing available content grows their businesses.

My suggestions (3, Offtopic)

devphil (51341) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722607)

If the cost of bandwidth is the main problem, is anybody anywhere trying to do anything about it?

If I said, "Use less bandwidth," would you call me an asshole?

How about, "design ads that don't suck up the bandwidth that you're using the ads to pay for" instead?

The early AdCritic site was simple and straightforward. One banner ad, medium graphics. The usual "best viewed with" collection of tiny icons. It loaded fast and quickly.

A month ago I went there for the first time in a long time, trying to find the Clinton "Last Days" movie. I was on a friend's computer, with no filters and all the graphics turned on. Five minutes later it was still retrieving streaming animated banner ads for all over the page, X10 popup and popunder ads were having their gory way with my eyeballs, and the actual text of the page wasn't done loading yet because all the high-bandwidth advertisments hadn't finished hoarding the network yet.

I gave up and got my Clinton video somewhere else.

Re:My suggestions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722642)

I'd lean more to calling you clueless. The ads almost all came from external servers that the site doesn't have to foot the bandwidth bill for. Besides, even if the ads did come from their server, and their were 10 times as many of them, it still wouldn't be as much bandwidth as sending the video would require.

Re:Is it the price of bandwidth? (4, Insightful)

Syberghost (10557) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722619)

If the cost of bandwidth is the main problem, is anybody anywhere trying to do anything about it?

Not every problem can or should be solved.

The primary problem that causes most convenience stores to go under is the cost of labor. Do you want the minimum wage repealed to fix it? (Note: some people do, I'm not attempting to argue the point, just to present the things you have to consider.)

The primary problem that causes MOST businesses to go under is the costs of something; labor, raw materials, bandwidth, something costs more than what they thought it would. That doesn't mean somebody needs to make it cost less; it often means the folks starting the business need to come up with a better business plan.

Re:Is it the price of bandwidth? (3, Interesting)

MKalus (72765) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722625)

Yes, that's the problem.

I was / am running with two other guys swma.net a website that is / was showing Star Wars Graphics / Models (The Star Wars Modelin Alliance).

We're offline for the past six months because we couldn't find a deal that we can afford.

Right now we push around 300 GB / MONTH but as soon as the new movie comes up we are toast, I am sure it'll jump above 500 GB, and believe me: There is NO hoster who can give us a deal under $1500/ month for this amount of bandwidth.

We might be back as we got a sponsor, but I have no clue how we are going to server all the people who are going to swarm it again without killing our donor off again....

Advertising doesn't pay, and a tip jar gave us 20 bucks in 3 months. Gee, thanks.

Michael

Great... (1)

Schnapple (262314) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722465)

..now where am I supposed to go to see the "kitty rustlers" ad from two Super Bowls ago.

Actually I figured the money for bandwidth could kill them - so how is it that Internet Archive site is able to afford up to 12GB per month in hard drive space?

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722532)

EDS still has it on their site available for download. Search on "cat herders".

I'M PISSED (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722468)

this nigger [cnn.com] should be dead!!!!!! why is the american judicial system fucked up?!?!?!

Of All Times... (5, Interesting)

SMN (33356) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722469)

I'm sure I'm not the only one wondering this. . . where am I gonna be able to find MPEG'd versions of next year's Super Bowl commercials now? It's often the only sports game I watch all year, and really just for the commercials -- but I like to download the funny ones afterwards. Can someone else recommend another site that might archive the Superbowl ads?

Also, their Investment Page [adcritic.com] is still up, so you can get some idea of the shear amount of traffic they receive -- 32,500,000 videos streamed last January alone (that's a lot of bandwidth)!

In case anyone misses the irony, this is a site where people go looking for ads -- you'd think it's the perfect market for any advertisements. If banner ads can't succeed even here, then the future of free websites isn't looking too bright.

Re:Of All Times... (3, Informative)

benedict (9959) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722540)

How about adforum.com?

I've had problems making their stuff work on Mac OS X -- their codec is apparently not supported -- but I bet they'd be willing to work on that if enough people complain.

See them on FuckedCompany.com (0)

iiii (541004) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722471)

They are the top article right now on fuckedCompany.com [fuckedcompany.com]

p2p, where are you when we need you? (1)

mecran01 (41962) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722482)

Maybe something like http://www.filepile.org will spring up, only hosted using swarmcast or some other p2p tech. It seems like central servers are an expensive way to host something like adcritic.

How does this figure? (5, Funny)

KurdtX (207196) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722483)

Wait, a site that was "All ads, all the time" became too popular? And advertisers could track which ads were more popular than others objectively and exactly? I've always said most marketeers wouldn't understand technology if it smacked them in the face. Guess I was right.

Damn, if they couldn't find funding, slashdot's fux0r'd.

Can't say I'm surprised (2)

Otter (3800) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722484)

I'll miss Adcritic, but I can't say I'm surprised they couldn't make it. The bandwidth they were using must have been mindboggling. Given how hard it is for sites serving mostly text to stay afloat, I can't see how they could have done it.

I don't think they were getting any revenue from the companies whose advertising they were airing. (They did have permission tp distribute them, by the way.)

The web giveth, and the web taketh away... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722487)

I think it's been at least a year since they're bandwidth just dropped, and instead of being able to stream ads in real-time (on my cable modem), it took ten minutes for Quicktime to download them, and more often then not it just failed. I'm surprised they lasted this long.

But, here's some good news: TheHungerSite.com [thehungersite.com] is back up! Not sure when it happened... it was several months ago that it got shut down... but it's back up now.

Ah Well.. (1)

Sinjun (176671) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722490)

...they never could get my favorite commercial anyway. Remember 'Dog's Worst Day' from Super Bowl 2000 (Rams - Titans). Budweiser commercial with the dog on the set of the Western movie. I laughed for 15 solid minutes.

A need for Distributed Content Storage (5, Insightful)

Starship Trooper (523907) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722496)

This is just one example of why peer-to-peer distributed systems like the Freenet project [sourceforge.net] need to be developed. The Web is limited in that there needs to be somebody willing to maintain and update the servers on which data is stored, and that when a huge central resource like this can no longer afford to maintain their service, gigabytes of data can be potentially lost forever. What we need is a distributed system, where content is automatically propagated between nodes and can be downloaded from any one node, independent of venture capital and ad revenues.

Freenet does much of this, but still falls short of the ideal and still needs a lot of work to become viable. "Unpopular" data on Freenet is automatically destroyed to make room for more popular data, which makes it unsuitable for prolonged archival. There still isn't a decent search engine; finding data requires that you obtain the "key" from somebody who knows where to find it, which is inefficent and makes it hard for new Freenet users to locate data. If Freenet data could be made more permanent and easily searchable, or if somebody else could develop and promote a P2P network that isn't just a haven for warez and stolen music, it would become a great alternative to the struggling Web.

A classic case for a public-service website. (2)

sulli (195030) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722497)

Adcritic, Slashdot, Body Modification Ezine: sites that provide a valuable service to readers and fans of a whole industry, and yet can't pay the bills. How to make it add up?

Of course they could go the Salon route, and introduce "AdCritic PREMIUM!" with larger vid feeds for a few bux. Or they could hire a laid-off pr0n editor and introduce pay-per-view. But there's got to be a better way, one that rightfully assigns the cost of serving the ads on the advertisers themselves, who surely want people to see the ads.

Here's the answer: a mandatory annual levy on the advertising industry to support AdCritic. It's commonly used in agriculture, to support those "It's the Cheese" and "Got Milk?" ads; and courts have ruled that it's legal.

This is the right solution for so many reasons. Advertisers pay for a service they benefit from; advertisers, buyers, and consumers get their ads in full-motion QuickTime, Windows Media, or Divx; and people see the ads and buy more stuff! Everyone wins.

Re:A classic case for a public-service website. (1)

Graff (532189) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722548)

Of course they could go the Salon route, and introduce "AdCritic PREMIUM!" with larger vid feeds for a few bux.

They did this. Adcritic had a pay version which would let you view the ads in a much larger size. I never did it, but i saw it advertised on their site.

Adcritic [adcritic.com] , IMDB [imdb.com] , and the Quicktime Movie Trailers [apple.com] sites were three of the sites I would use all the time to see what cool ads and movies were out and to get more information on them. I'm sad that Adcritic couldn't make it, I'm fairly certain the Quicktime page is safe, but I hope IMDB can stay up.

Re:A classic case for a public-service website. (1)

Ewan (5533) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722629)

IMDB is now a part of amazon.com, and is getting quite integrated into the site for providing reviews, film information and so on about DVD's amazon sells.

This should secure IMDB for now.

Re:A classic case for a public-service website. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722632)

Here's the answer: a mandatory annual levy on the advertising industry to support AdCritic. It's commonly used in agriculture, to support those "It's the Cheese" and "Got Milk?" ads; and courts have ruled that it's legal.

Milk / cheese / etc. industry ads also require a law in order to exist. If all the milk processors got together and tried to do the same thing, they'd be fined for colluding and price fixing. OTOH, the supreme court did rule that forcing mushroom packers to pay for industry-wide ads was illegal.

Or how about getting them to voluntarily pay? (2)

Galvatron (115029) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722663)

Introduce a price per download. Sort of reverse royalties. Mandatory payments only make sense when there is no way to exclude people from the benefits. For example, milk ads benefit all milk producers, so whether, say Berkeley Farms chips in, Berkeley Farms milk will still sell better due to advertising. In the case of ad critic on the other hand, if McDonalds doesn't pay for their ads being downloaded, ad critic will not offer McDonalds ads. Simple enough.

Never heard of them. (0, Funny)

CmderTaco (533794) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722500)

They must have had bad advertising...

"Reason Why..." (3, Interesting)

dghcasp (459766) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722502)

Ummm, we realized there is no money to be made by showing ads for free...

It's an interesting comment on our culture that AdCritic existed in the first place; that ads have become entertainment. While *insert-network-here* would probably be rather upset if a site copied and posted *insert-hit-tv-show-here* onto a web site, I don't think advertisers (product or agency) ever complained about getting extra viewers for their ads...

Are we moving towards a society where the value of product placement will cover the whole cost of entertainment and we'll be able to get free copies of *insert-new-hit-movie-here* because it'll be completely filled with Dr. Pepper backdrops?

Although personally, I don't feel any grief that humanity has just eradicated the last known resovoir of "Where's the Beef!" I bet the CDC felt this way when they eradicated Smallpox.

Re:"Reason Why..." (-1)

CmderTaco (533794) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722533)

I bet the CDC felt this way when they eradicated Smallpox.

Not trying to nit pick, but Small pox is still being kept alive in several labs through out the world (US and Russia Mainly).

So better way to say this is "I bet the CDC felt this way when they confined Smallpox to only be in labratories."

Blaming the inevitable on the recession... (1)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722503)

From their explanation [adcritic.com] : Our business, although strong, has been unable to weather the current economic realities beseiging the United States today.

I really wish failing dot COMs would quit blaming the "current economic realities", rather than simply saying "the commerce model for the internet hasn't panned out as we hoped, and those sucker VCs got a little wiser". Seriously it wouldn't matter if it was the biggest boom ever right now: There was a D-day seen coming for all sorts of these sites, but now they have the convenience of going "it's the economy, stupid". No it isn't, and the downturn didn't change their existing total lack of profitability.

www.fuckedcompany.com (1)

Hates (168348) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722507)


For a funny and brash discussion on the topic go to:

Fucked Company [fuckedcompany.com]

Pay for Play? (0, Redundant)

jhaberman (246905) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722511)

I just had a thought... I'm surprised that they didn't go to all of the companies who's ads they were streaming (and it sounds like a LOT of them) and say, "You know, we got your ad viewed by 50,000 additional people last month. You should concider paying us to advertise for you."

I know you gotta advertise to make money in this world... if a company saw that people were voluntarily downloading their commercials for entertainment purposes, that has GOT to be worth something to them.

I have to imagine that would be every bit as effective an ad placement method as a newspaper or magazine ad.

However IANAAM (I am not an ad man).

Jason

+1 However, Important Slashdot Announcement: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722512)

What is the reaction of the infamous-wannabe-cyber-hacker-journalist
Jon Katz to this event?

Thanks in advance,
Woot_spork

P2P... (1)

dygytyz (540345) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722519)

Here's a good argument for P2P sharing if there ever was one. I would be personally willing to share the entire Adcritic site on my machine through LimeWire just so other people could have the opportunity to view these videos.

Another service that comes to mind are MojoNation. Ifyou can't a big pipe outright, buy smaller pieces of many pipes and combine them.

Is anyone offering to mirror the site or is it even going to be possible to do so?

Please, people! Restraint, please (1)

The Great Wakka (319389) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722523)

One last time... AdCritic is slashdotted. Horrible, really.

Reason from their site. (2)

scott1853 (194884) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722527)

It's a small reason, don't know why the /. editors didn't post it because the site it getting hammered.

Just Choose It Later.

AdCritic.com has enjoyed a sucessful life as a leader in the area of archiving television and radio advertising and related information for both consumers and the advertising industry. Our business, although strong, has been unable to weather the current economic realities beseiging the United States today. The short answer: we became so popular so fast that we couldn't stay afloat!

We thank you for your continued support of AdCritic.com, and hope that we will be back in full swing someday soon.

Interested in helping out? You could always just send us some money... or send your condolences.

Technically, the economic winds changed for the online world very quickly, and caused us to have to change our business plan to match those changes. The development lead time of those new changes, coupled with a lack of resources to develop our research facilities to their full potential, put us in a position where we simply could not continue our operations without outside funding. We still believe that our business model will work; it will just have to work for someone else, as our timing was not ideal. We'll work on that.

Sad but funny (1)

SuperguyA1 (90398) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722528)

They still are soliciting investments [adcritic.com] ?

What? (1)

Minter92 (148860) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722538)

"We bacame to popular to stay afloat" What the hell does that mean?

What nimrod thinks you can make money from the web anyway? If you make a site to make money you won't.

Sheer Incompetence (4, Insightful)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722549)

The entire media industry is supported by ads. Giant corporations like AOL Time-Warner have made buckets of money for decades by making the public watch ads only 10% or 20% of the time.

Here we have a company that had people look at ads 100% of the time. But they couldn't stay afloat even though they were sitting on top of a huge gold mine. Why? It's because they didn't bother to send a bill to the advertisers.

If they would just hire an administrative assistant to print out invoices, they would be in the black in no time!

Sad Confused Shock (2)

KarmaBlackballed (222917) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722551)

I felt AdCritic was one of the benefits of having Broadband. Now it is gone and I'm not sure why. The "why" page just says they did not make $. Okay. Why didn't they make enough money?

There seems to be a missed marketing opportunity here. If their traffic was really so big, you cannot tell me that the vendors whose commercials they displayed could not be approached for some payola. This is more advertising for them. Why wasn't their spiel compelling if they did approach vendors?

When I first found the site I assumed it would eventually create a new marketing avenue where companies focused on creating funny/appealing commercials with the up front intent of hosting it on AdCritic. The strategy there being the better the commercial is, the more eyes you will have looking at it.

Perhaps AdCritic was just a little before its time. Maybe the demographic was not right. Maybe it will be back when everyone's mom and grandma has broadband. Maybe it will be back when folks at companies controlling ad budgets really understand the marketing power of the internet.

Happens in Brick and Mortar Businesses (2)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722554)

Not uncommon, even in meatspace. You get popular, you expand. In most businesses, income lags behind the service. You give lots of service, but the income doesn't show up for a long time.

Kinda sucks to see them go. Now that I finally have a cable modem at home, I might have wanted to visit more often.

So sad... (1)

stressky (218896) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722558)

I'm really sad to see them go...was one of the few websites I still visit on a regular basis, but there's no reason why P2P filesharing or a binary newsgroup can't fill the gap created.

Give them a prize... (2)

Kletus Cassidy (230405) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722567)

A dotcomm that was dumb enough to get into the high bandwidth consuming game of distributing video streams with revenue coming from banner ads and the like when all around them it has been shown that sites can't even afford to pay for the bandwidth costs of just serving some dynamic HTML doesn't deserve pity but instead a Darwin Award [darwinawards.com]

That's where I got the Linux .avi (1)

nicarley (216410) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722583)

That's a sad thing-they actually had a pretty cool website & offered an entertainment website. That's where I downloaded IBM's 100% Linux commercial.. (for those of you who haven't seen that--its worth downloading if you can find it..Or let me know And I'll email it!)

Problems from the start (2)

clark625 (308380) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722589)

They were doomed from the begining. I mean, people go to their site _only_ to view and laugh over, of all things, advertisements. How in the heck do you sell quality ad space on there? Maybe the Amazon.com solution would have worked better for them:


People who liked this ad also found these ads enjoyable:

The new Pepsi Commercial "Do-dad"

The new "Wazzup" Commercial



I just don't see them really making money unless the advertisers paid to be listed on the site.

When will Slashdot fall? (Troll -1) (1, Redundant)

Kozz (7764) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722592)

This will get modded as a troll, I'm sure, but I think this is a question worth asking: When might Slashdot fall?

It seems that the biggest and baddest of companies have a difficult time paying the bandwidth bills when they become popular.

Do you think the economy will turn around in time to save Slashdot from a similar fate?

Re: When will Slashdot fall? (Troll -1) (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2722623)

This will get modded as a troll, I'm sure

It would, except you used the reverse psychology trick that seems to fool the moderators every time. I fully expect to be moderated too hell for pointing this out.

Re: When will Slashdot fall? (Troll -1) (1)

MisterBlister (539957) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722639)

I predict Slashdot will eat itself.

Urm, what I mean by that is that VA (Not Linux) Systems or whatever they are called this week will force more and more changes (ala the OSDN bar) on Slashdot. As time wears on and they get more and more desperate they will force larger, more unfriendly, less-able-to-be-removed features. The users will eventually get sick of it and go elsewhere.

The other alternative that could happen is Slashdot could try a for-pay subscription service and realize nobody is willing to pay for badly written regurgitated stories (that just point us to other websites anyway), trolls, and unsubstantiated Microsoft bashing.

It would be nice if one of the Slashdot editors answered this question, but I won't hold my breath....What happens when VA up and dies one day? Do the rights to publish Slashdot revert back to Taco as an individual? Do they fall into limbo?

Last troll out, turn off the lights.

Re: When will Slashdot fall? (Troll -1) (5, Insightful)

daviddennis (10926) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722664)

Doubtful. The thing saving Slashdot is that it has a clear, identifiable audience that spends big bucks on stuff. The audience also includes many people who are heavily in demand, even in this economy. So you get lots of employment ads, and lots of gadget, hosting and Linux server ads, and that should be enough to let them pull through.

Bandwidth is probably their greatest expense, but it's almost pure text and thus not enormous. Granted, it's a lot of pure text, but one 30 second video is bigger than any Slashdot story will ever get to be.

Finally, you have something like five people running the site. I know Rob makes $90k a year, and everyone else probably makes correspondingly less. So it just doesn't take that much to keep it up and running, compared to (say) Salon, who has maybe 25-50 professional writers to feed.

D

I can't believe this... (2)

weave (48069) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722594)

Why the hell weren't advertisers paying out the wazoo to be on adcritic? Here's a place where people actually go voluntarily and watch ads. No attempts to push it down their throats. What a great way to get your message out. Imagine that, people WANT to see your ads. They have hard solid numbers of who is watching the ad versus some black magic neilsen crap where most people have switched channels or doing a system dump.

(They *could* get a better name however. It just sounds so, er, critical...)

AdCritic Business Plan (1)

MisterBlister (539957) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722602)

1) Build free website consisting of many multiple-megabyte video files sure to cost us thousands of dollars in bandwidth charges per month. 2) ... 3) Profit!

So bandwidth's a problem? Post it to slashdot! (3, Funny)

bprotas (28569) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722627)

Hey guys, here's an idea: let's take a website that's shutting down because it can't afford bandwidth, and post a link to it on the frontpage of slashdot!!! That will show them what REAL BANDWIDTH USAGE COSTS!!!! MWA HA HA!!!!!!!

DAMNIT!!!!! (2)

night_flyer (453866) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722652)

I didnt even knew this site existed, and now Im looking for the Alice Cooper pitching the Marriot Hotel commercial... any place else to look?

well, i hope they didn't throw it all away (1)

blisspix (463180) | more than 12 years ago | (#2722656)

I hope adcritic has organised to donate their digital archive to the Internet Archive, or a University/Special Library somewhere so that people who need the archives can still use them.

I know quite a few advertising lecturers who would find it an invaluable resource.

Unfortunately, it seems that too often these sorts of projects come and go (Questia, another floundering enterprise) and the information is lost forever.
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