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posted by cmn32480 on Monday October 26 2015, @06:12AM   Printer-friendly
from the if-they-had-only-listened-before dept.

Marketoonist ran a story about marketers saying, "Oops, our bad."

The Interactive Advertising Bureau issued a remarkable mea culpa last week about the state of online advertising. In response to the rise of ad-blocking software, IAB VP Scott Cunningham said digital advertisers should take responsibility for annoying people and driving them to use ad blockers:

"We messed up. As technologists, tasked with delivering content and services to users, we lost track of the user experience....

"We build advertising technology to optimize publishers' yield of marketing budgets that had eroded after the last recession. Looking back now, our scraping of dimes may have cost us dollars in consumer loyalty...

"The consumer is demanding these actions, challenging us to do better, and we must respond."

Nod to pipedot for running this story.


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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by physicsmajor on Monday October 26 2015, @07:03AM

    by physicsmajor (1471) on Monday October 26 2015, @07:03AM (#254555)

    Interestingly, advertising itself absolutely can survive. I have no problem, and I cannot imagine anyone else having a problem, with a site running ads which are dumb billboards shown to all visitors. They can be targeted to that domain's userbase! You can take the content on that page into account, and modify what they show accordingly. That all is completely fine.

    Start scripting in the background? Tracking me across domains? After a kid Googles LEGO Movie I start seeing ads for brick toys and that film plastered across every site I visit? That's where it breaks down.

    To the advertisers: Let me be completely blunt. Do not track me. Do not attempt to conduct invasive surveillance of anyone across the internet. If you do this, and guarantee it in a transparent way, I have no problem whatsoever allowing your content. However, right now you are quite simply a malicious tracking vehicle hell-bent on invading everyone's privacy and security. Even this mea culpa isn't addressing the real problem - tracking. Fix what's actually broken.

    I've idly considered doing this myself, with a new web advertising startup named something like "Secure Advertising" which guarantees no tracking, no scripting, no Flash, no audio. I think there's pent-up demand for this. Send me a PM if you agree.

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  • (Score: 3, Touché) by K_benzoate on Monday October 26 2015, @07:13AM

    by K_benzoate (5036) on Monday October 26 2015, @07:13AM (#254559)

    Do not track me. Do not attempt to conduct invasive surveillance of anyone across the internet.

    I could accept ads on those terms, but you will not get the advertising industry to give up those practices. They're too greedy, and it only takes one bad actor to ruin things for everyone. They won't give up those practices voluntarily so it's up to individual users to take them away.

    --
    Climate change is real and primarily caused by human activity.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by quadrox on Monday October 26 2015, @07:13AM

    by quadrox (315) on Monday October 26 2015, @07:13AM (#254560)

    I actually have a problem with close to all forms of advertising.

    Advertising introduces memetic thoughts into our brains, with the sole intent of extracting money from us. How anyone can not see this as inherently evil is beyond me. Furthermore, my brain gets bogged down with countless jingles, slogans, imagery and other completely useless crap, that I just not want in there. I am convinced that the constant attack on our minds through various forms of advertising is contributing to stress and other psychological problems.

    I understand the need to inform people about the availability of a product that they might otherwise not know about - but this should be done in the most "boring" information-only way. No pictures of smiling people, no slogans, no music, no glaring colors or anything of the sort. Present the product on a neutral colored background, and give the specifications - nothing else allowed. Anything beyond that should be have been forbidden a long time ago.

    • (Score: 1, Troll) by Adamsjas on Monday October 26 2015, @07:35AM

      by Adamsjas (4507) on Monday October 26 2015, @07:35AM (#254564)

      Sorry, when I go shopping on the web, I know what I'm looking for, and I expect a lot of information, and I expect images, maybe movies. Not willing to accept your crazy-assed restrictions just because or your childish fear of "memetic thoughts". For christ sake grow up, learn to look away.

      If I come to the web to research band saws I expect to find them with a search engine, I expect to find retailers, I expect to find the manufacturer's site. And I expect to find advertising that informs me about the product, both on retailer sites like Home Depot, as well as tool rental shops, and mail order places

      The web will ALWAYS have that, because most people want that capability. If you can't handle that, get off the web. Its not for you.

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by quadrox on Monday October 26 2015, @08:18AM

        by quadrox (315) on Monday October 26 2015, @08:18AM (#254576)

        And I have no problem with presenting all of that on the product page for that product. Just don't show it to me in an advertisement without me asking for it.

      • (Score: 5, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 26 2015, @08:22AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 26 2015, @08:22AM (#254579)

        For christ sake
        .
        .
        .
        .

        grow up,

        .
        .
        .
        .

          learn to look away.

        .
        .
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        .
        Burma Shave!

      • (Score: 2) by Nuke on Monday October 26 2015, @02:18PM

        by Nuke (3162) on Monday October 26 2015, @02:18PM (#254674)

        If I come to the web to research band saws I expect to find them with a search engine, I expect to find retailers, I expect to find the manufacturer's site. And I expect to find advertising that informs me about the product, both on retailer sites like Home Depot, as well as tool rental shops, and mail order places

        Yes, that's fine - on the web sites of retailers and manufacturers. I don't think most people here are objecting to that. Like if I want to buy a camera I look at the websites of Pentax, Canon etc to see what they offer, and I also look at review sites to find what there is on the market (maybe a make of camera I've not heard of before).

        What I and most here are objecting to is having camera adverts (or any other) jumping up over a web page about donkey riding (for example) that I am trying to read, because some marketing droid is tracking me to the ends of the earth after I happened to look at a camera-oriented website once.

    • (Score: 2) by Grishnakh on Monday October 26 2015, @01:29PM

      by Grishnakh (2831) on Monday October 26 2015, @01:29PM (#254650)

      Well this is why I liked Google Ads, years ago before they started all the tracking BS. It was great: you did a search, and on the right side of your search results, there were some small, 3-line, text-only ads which pertained to whatever you just searched for. It was a good way to find products that solved a problem you were having, and it paid for the search engine.

      Unfortunately, that's gone now, replaced with all kinds of tracking and spying.

    • (Score: 2) by SanityCheck on Monday October 26 2015, @01:30PM

      by SanityCheck (5190) on Monday October 26 2015, @01:30PM (#254651)

      I agree with your expressed sentiment. I hold the same belief that brainwashing the masses is really evil. And of course though much less effective than in average case, I know it has some effect on me nonetheless. They have gotten so good at their brain-warping that no one is safe. But you won't ever get them to agree or to see it for what it is, because they were the first casualty of their own propaganda.

  • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday October 26 2015, @07:48AM

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Monday October 26 2015, @07:48AM (#254566) Journal

    I have no problem, and I cannot imagine anyone else having a problem, with a site running ads which are dumb billboards shown to all visitors.

    I have a problem with that.

    It use to be that way. But even then the web sites got very greedy and started loading the pages full of advertising images. The animated gifs and such came later. Nobody will follow any rules, so the solution is to just block them all.
    Blocking works if these ads are served off of another domain.

    But when the images are hosted on the same site as the web content, there is just about no reliable way to block them, other than looking for urls that lead off site, and blocking any associated image. That can be tricky and pretty destructive to the usability of the web.

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
  • (Score: 2) by NickFortune on Monday October 26 2015, @12:31PM

    by NickFortune (3267) on Monday October 26 2015, @12:31PM (#254634)

    I've idly considered doing this myself, with a new web advertising startup named something like "Secure Advertising" which guarantees no tracking, no scripting, no Flash, no audio. I think there's pent-up demand for this. Send me a PM if you agree.

    I can admire the intent, but you've got some hefty problems to overcome. You need to get clients when you don't have any websites to run their adverts; you need to get websites to take your ads when you don't have any clients. And you need to get adblock users to understand that you're not just another flavour of doubleclick so they don't just block you before they realise you have an ethical stance.

    You can get around the first two by (for example) calling all the widget manufacturers until you find one with something to promote, and then calling around the widget websites and asking them if they'll run the ad. The third point is going to be tricky though.