Jimquisition: The Adblock Episode

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IceForce:
And where are the mods anyway? I haven't seen any for several pages now.

They're pretty much completely done with this thread.

They'll occasionally run back in, poke it with a stick and then flee again.

Thanatos2k:
Piracy is a pretty apt comparison to ad blocking too. Taking something and giving nothing back because of whatever flawed personal justifications you can cook up.

You seriously think advertising is evil. There's no talking rationally with such an individual. I'm done with you. Keep on stealing.

Yeah yeah we're all thieves and pirates if we don't bend over and take it up the ass by every malware, virus, trojan, etc, on the internet, and have our bank accounts drained by some russian mobster whose little browser hijack object ran in an ad distributed by an ad agency like doubleclick. Sure. You keep telling yourself that, enjoy that malware on your high horse.

Meanwhile I'll sit here with my defenses up and a pub club membership, and whatever equivalent other sites have in place, if any, because I'd rather pay directly than compromise my security.

I'm surprised your repeated flagrant rudeness to other users hasn't met with any moderation yet either, as you're wantonly disregarding those forum rules, but then again the mods here do seem to take the part of the ad advocates at every step, because apparently the ad agencies have them whipped really bad.

Cerebrawl:

Thanatos2k:
Piracy is a pretty apt comparison to ad blocking too. Taking something and giving nothing back because of whatever flawed personal justifications you can cook up.

You seriously think advertising is evil. There's no talking rationally with such an individual. I'm done with you. Keep on stealing.

Yeah yeah we're all thieves and pirates if we don't bend over and take it up the ass by every malware, virus, trojan, etc, on the internet, and have our bank accounts drained by some russian mobster whose little browser hijack object ran in an ad distributed by an ad agency like doubleclick. Sure. You keep telling yourself that, enjoy that malware on your high horse.

Do you have any idea how often this occurs? Do share the statistics. I have yet to have this happen. This is a common smokescreen excuse for something that is rarely a danger for someone running an antivirus.

IceForce:

Aardvaarkman:
Can you tell us how far up The Escapist's management chain this authorisation of warning for people simply admitting to using ad blockers in this thread went? Who was it that approved the terms of this supposed "armistice"?

Aardvaarkman:
we still don't have any answers as to who is responsible for deciding on the forum rules and exceptions for this thread. Even the amendment on the first post is signed with an anonymous "Mods" as the author.

I've only been vaguely following this. Has this question been answered yet?
If not, it's almost like the mods are deliberately avoiding answering it, for some reason.

And where are the mods anyway? I haven't seen any for several pages now.

Someone was warned for a short "I use ad block, who doesn't" post on the previous page, so I guess that rule is still in effect, even if things like not being rude to other users apparently isn't, with certain users here heaping on the abuse and calling everyone thieves and pirates and whatnot.

Cerebrawl:

IceForce:

Aardvaarkman:
Can you tell us how far up The Escapist's management chain this authorisation of warning for people simply admitting to using ad blockers in this thread went? Who was it that approved the terms of this supposed "armistice"?

Aardvaarkman:
we still don't have any answers as to who is responsible for deciding on the forum rules and exceptions for this thread. Even the amendment on the first post is signed with an anonymous "Mods" as the author.

I've only been vaguely following this. Has this question been answered yet?
If not, it's almost like the mods are deliberately avoiding answering it, for some reason.

And where are the mods anyway? I haven't seen any for several pages now.

Someone was warned for a short "I use ad block, who doesn't" post on the previous page, so I guess that rule is still in effect, even if things like not being rude to other users apparently isn't, with certain users here heaping on the abuse and calling everyone thieves and pirates and whatnot.

If you're uncomfortable with such a term, stop perpetrating that behavior. Because no matter what excuses, rationalizations, or justifications you can make up, that IS what you're doing from an objective view point.

You are depriving a site of revenue. You are actively damaging a site. It's not rude to state this fact.

lacktheknack:

IceForce:
And where are the mods anyway? I haven't seen any for several pages now.

They're pretty much completely done with this thread.

They'll occasionally run back in, poke it with a stick and then flee again.

I haven't seen Jim either, despite him promising an armistice and sorting that out with the mods, hopefully.

(Granted, it's unrealistic to expect him to read 22 pages of comments, but this particular situation is rather important, I thought.)

Thanatos2k:

Cerebrawl:

Thanatos2k:
Piracy is a pretty apt comparison to ad blocking too. Taking something and giving nothing back because of whatever flawed personal justifications you can cook up.

You seriously think advertising is evil. There's no talking rationally with such an individual. I'm done with you. Keep on stealing.

Yeah yeah we're all thieves and pirates if we don't bend over and take it up the ass by every malware, virus, trojan, etc, on the internet, and have our bank accounts drained by some russian mobster whose little browser hijack object ran in an ad distributed by an ad agency like doubleclick. Sure. You keep telling yourself that, enjoy that malware on your high horse.

Do you have any idea how often this occurs? Do share the statistics. I have yet to have this happen. This is a common smokescreen excuse for something that is rarely a danger for someone running an antivirus.

Before I started adblocking I had to sweep my computer of malware on at least a weekly basis, a couple of times it got so bad that I had to reinstall my OS.

I was running an anti-virus(AVG), and more than half a dozen different anti-malware programs(like malwarebytes, ad-aware, spybot search&destroy, spywareblaster, hijackthis, etc).

These days they don't even get to me through my shield of blockers, blocking the ads means not having to regularly clean up dozens of dataminers, trojans, and the like every damn week.

lacktheknack:
They're pretty much completely done with this thread.

They'll occasionally run back in, poke it with a stick and then flee again.

I'm selective about what I adblock, but in this day and age anyone who's not using some kind of blocker or no-script plugin is actively risking their PC's health from ads with malicious code. In my experience, it's on par with not using antivirus software or firewalls - you're just asking for trouble.

That being said there is one thing on the Escapist I proudly adblock:
That absolutely horrifying avatar of yours, Lack. ;)

Cerebrawl:

Thanatos2k:

Cerebrawl:

Yeah yeah we're all thieves and pirates if we don't bend over and take it up the ass by every malware, virus, trojan, etc, on the internet, and have our bank accounts drained by some russian mobster whose little browser hijack object ran in an ad distributed by an ad agency like doubleclick. Sure. You keep telling yourself that, enjoy that malware on your high horse.

Do you have any idea how often this occurs? Do share the statistics. I have yet to have this happen. This is a common smokescreen excuse for something that is rarely a danger for someone running an antivirus.

Before I started adblocking I had to sweep my computer of malware on at least a weekly basis, a couple of times it got so bad that I had to reinstall my OS.

I was running an anti-virus(AVG), and more than half a dozen different anti-malware programs(like malwarebytes, ad-aware, spybot search&destroy, spywareblaster, hijackthis, etc).

These days they don't even get to me through my shield of blockers, blocking the ads means not having to regularly clean up dozens of dataminers, trojans, and the like every damn week.

So I just ran malwarebytes and it produced 4 things it cleaned up, and they were just tracking cookies. And it's been a while since I ran it last.

Sweep them on a "weekly" basis? Reinstall an OS? What exactly were you doing to get all that malware onto your system? Because viewing ads doesn't do that.

Kieve:

lacktheknack:
They're pretty much completely done with this thread.

They'll occasionally run back in, poke it with a stick and then flee again.

I'm selective about what I adblock, but in this day and age anyone who's not using some kind of blocker or no-script plugin is actively risking their PC's health from ads with malicious code. In my experience, it's on par with not using antivirus software or firewalls - you're just asking for trouble.

That being said there is one thing on the Escapist I proudly adblock:
That absolutely horrifying avatar of yours, Lack. ;)

if only you knew how much worse this avatar is going to get

Thanatos2k:
So I just ran malwarebytes and it produced 4 things it cleaned up, and they were just tracking cookies. And it's been a while since I ran it last.

Sweep them on a "weekly" basis? Reinstall an OS? What exactly were you doing to get all that malware onto your system? Because viewing ads doesn't do that.

Normal browsing. Do note that all it takes is one trojan-ladden ad to backdoor your system and download a dozen more trojans. Some of these are exceedingly difficult to get rid of, and require hours of work to be rid of. It's been to the point where it's just faster to reinstall the OS.

Some of these hijack the OS to protect them and they really are a nightmare to get rid of.

See, as you point out - its the intrusiveness of ads thats the problem. however it is the advertisers that have to take the first step if they ever want to win people over. adblock users base is increasing because the ads are getting more and more intrusive.

Adblock actually has a system of ads rating and does not block unintrusive ads by default (they rate by website). for example reddit is whitelisted by default. Escapist however get to the worst list there, and no wonder, with your popup autoplaying videos! this shit has to go, seriuosly, get rid of it.

That being said, escapist is in my whitelist, because as awful as ads here are, i think the site is worth supporting.

Thanatos2k:

So I just ran malwarebytes and it produced 4 things it cleaned up, and they were just tracking cookies. And it's been a while since I ran it last.

because malware bytes catches everything.... riiight....

For those of you wondering why the "Captcha doesn't work", it works, but the reason it seems to flake out is because it timed-out, it does use flash sometimes. Just hit the refresh on the captcha once, enter it and hit submit. This could be improved by not having the Captcha appear until the post button is hit. But this is nothing critical, and I don't see this why this was given as an excuse why some people were blocking the advertisements.

I have used Adblock on the Escapist in the past.

I disabled my Adblock on the Escapist after watching this video (as I do for most content producers that ask nicely). I was immediately treated to two things that annoy me: a flashing animated ad about a car (which thankfully stopped after one cycle) and a Psycho-Pass (gotta remember to buy that) ad that featured some of the worst audio I've heard in a video ad.

I do like the fact that you acknowledged that the ads are a nuisance, so my Adblock shall remain off. However, I think it's more than a little stupid that, in a discussion specifically about adblock, you are warning people that discussing the topic may result in them being punished. Even I could get a warning just for admitting that, yes, I HAVE used it. This runs completely against the point of a forum - to get people talking about the topic.

If you're going to post a video about adblock, and have people talk about adblock, they should be free to do so without a hammer hanging over their heads, waiting to fall if the mods decide that they said the wrong thing (provided of course that they're not breaking the forum's other rules about being dicks/harassing content creators, something I feel that your "shit-bats" fall under). Otherwise we might as well be trying to have a political discussion in North Korea - everybody loves the government, except those dudes who go on extended vacations.

Adblock tells you how many ads it blocked and I'll bet that this forum has more ads per page than most other forums. I wouldn't know for sure though....

...and you constantly have to prove that you are human too, can't have bots looking at Jeeps.

Thanatos2k:

Karadalis:

Thanatos2k:
The excuses for ad blocking are getting flimsier and flimsier. Claiming you want "the best experience" is just a smokescreen for your own selfishness. Pirated games often have a "better experience" but that doesn't excuse you stealing them. It would be an "optimal experience" to just take my groceries straight out to the car without having to wait in a checkout line and pay but sometimes you just have to suffer a little so the world keeps working.

If you use ad blockers, you are basically stealing from the sites you visit. Internet sites are not "free" - you "pay" by displaying ads.

If everyone ad blocked most sites on the internet would go out of business. That's how you know what you're doing is wrong.

Sorry but i have to strongly disagree.

They upload the videos for everyone to see. Thats like standing in the middle of the street playing on your violin and accusing everyone that comes along and doesnt pay you of "stealing your music"

It only would be stealing if the videos and content where locked behind a paywall and someone pirated it, you know... like all of your comparisons? All the products you can only get if you actually pay for them? Instead of getting them for free? I mean if you watch TV... do you feel guilty when you switch channels during commercial break?

There is no stealing going on here, the content is in plain sight for everyone to see. How they get their money is not my problem but theirs. They choose to make the content available for everyone who comes along no strings attached.

Also you ignore that the Escapist is not above hosting adds for obvious scam companies that will gladly infect your PC with Malware to hold it hostage and extort money from you.

I said it once and i say it again: Aslong as the Escapist does not guarantee me that none of the adds it hosts are not harmfull for my PC i will not re enable auto play for flash elements.

I dont mind banners for "legit" products, services, and companies nor do i have a problem with whatever commercial plays before videos in the player, but i will not be guilt tripped into re enabling adds for scamsites and browser crashing flash crap.

As soon as the escapist gets rid of these and those ear shattering auto play vids ill gladly re enable auto play of flash elements for the site.

It's not standing in the middle of a field - it's standing in the living room of their house which has an open door and a sign out front. You're not in a public place - you're on their site. I repeat - the internet is NOT a public place. For example, unlike a public place, you do not have freedom of speech on the internet. If you would like proof of this, start swearing at another user.

"Hosting ads from scam companies" is again no excuse. If you CLICK on the ads and go to a site that has mal ware, that's completely different from seeing an ad that MIGHT go to an unscrupulous site. No one is forcing you to click ads, and ads that auto load malware just by themselves are extraordinarily rare. (Again, the days of ActiveX are over)

The price of entry is to watch ads - all ads, not just the ones you think you deserve to watch.

Are you kidding me? The internet is the most public place in the world.. cause it doesnt matter where the server is.. the whole world can have access to it! As soon as they limit who can and cant watch their content THEN and only then is it not a "public" place anymore.

And they let everyone in no strings attached.

And then get pissy if you dont let that dubios looking guy who claims "hes a real doctor" infect you with whatever he has in his syringe and then extort you for the cure? I mean you dont have to take his "service" but hes still standing there over in the corner waiting for you to misclick on him.

There is no price to these videos, get that through: If there was a price i wouldnt be able to watch those videos for FREE.

I have to pay nothing, thats the whole schtick of websites like these. If the escapist is unable to make money without hosting virus and malware sporting adds then that is not my problem.

I dont have any obligations to let my pants down infront of Bubba here just so that Jim (as awesome as his videos are) can keep on basicly ranting to the camera.

I made it clear what it would take for me to re enable auto flash play.

Oh and its not an "excuse" its a REASON to not allow those kinda adds. The escapist is more then willing to accept that the adds they host on their site carry malicious stuff in them and then have the BALLS to ask that i support them?

Basicly youre telling me to support a company that doesnt care if i suffer aslong as they make a quick buck cause hey! Great content right?

Ive heard better jokes from putin.

Karadalis:

Are you kidding me? The internet is the most public place in the world.. cause it doesnt matter where the server is.. the whole world can have access to it! As soon as they limit who can and cant watch their content THEN and only then is it not a "public" place anymore.

Nope. Absolutely false. I'm pretty sure your ISP will care a lot if you're using it to distribute illegal content. Terms of Service Violations and all. They may not be checking what you're downloading, but Law Enforcement and IP holders certainly do. Each website is equal to a private home or business. You have no right to come in and take candies from the bulk bins every day without paying. (And ew, people still do this... do you know how many OTHER people do that? yuck.)

Karadalis:

And they let everyone in no strings attached.

This is not relevant, most physical businesses that are open 24/7 have store security and will escort you off the premises if you decide to make yourself at home without first paying for the merchandise.

Karadalis:

And then get pissy if you dont let that dubios looking guy who claims "hes a real doctor" infect you with whatever he has in his syringe and then extort you for the cure? I mean you dont have to take his "service" but hes still standing there over in the corner waiting for you to misclick on him.

Laughable, try "Look at that empty space, sometimes he's a real doctor, sometimes on a blue moon it's a doctor mario." The chances of getting malware is zero if you've been letting your operating system update automatically and have antivirus software. Even if you aren't running antivirus software, are you really unable to tell what a trash ad looks like? I'll give you a hint:
http://en.softonic.com/s/skype
Now, an intelligent person would realize that the Skype link is half way down the page. Someone who was looking for a specific version number would end up getting this site instead of skype.com which would make the most sense.

Karadalis:

There is no price to these videos, get that through: If there was a price i wouldnt be able to watch those videos for FREE.

No the price is 30 seconds of your time to view the pre-roll ad plus whatever banners are on the page.

It's not an unreasonable price. If it's a problem, pay for the subscription.

Like I said, there's not been any reasonable excuse presented, all I'm seeing are people who feel they are entitled to an ad-free site without paying for it. Please, anyone who creates content for free on the internet would not buy these excuses.

Thanatos2k:

It's like the piracy argument.

"We don't want games with DRM."
"We don't want games with a force online component."
"We don't want games with microtransactions."
"We don't want games with online passes."
"We don't want games with shoehorned multiplayer."
"Give us all that and we'll buy your game"

And then everyone pirates it anyways.

You're just speaking for yourself.

This isn't a democracy. You don't get to decide what ads sites run. Either view them or don't view the site. Your line of thinking is pure selfishness.

And if we stop viewing the site, then what? The companies would have to change their business model anyway to gain business back. That's how capitalism works. Someone offers a better deal and gains customers from the one offering a shitty one. At all times the business is subject to the will of the consumer base, and usually get butthurt at the thought of change. Hence, an effort to make consumer options difficult or painful. Piracy, used game sales, adblock, are the inedivible counter waves to keep from having to cut one's nose off to spite one's face, and whether theft or not is irrelevant. It's still a form of competition leaving the company in the same place they'd be if the customer took the "don't buy it / view it" path. Yes it is selfish, but so is every other consumer transaction because no one buys something just so that someone can have a job. We buy things we want / need and don't buy things we don't.

Companies that ignore the consumer base's desires usually don't stay in business long. No one is owed someone's business, and while there's a moral high ground that can be taken, at the core of it isn't theft: it's that customers have the choice to find a better deal and someone offered it. I've seen to many businesses even locally crumble because they stuck to what they wanted to do instead of trying to please the customer.

Redd the Sock:

Companies that ignore the consumer base's desires usually don't stay in business long. No one is owed someone's business, and while there's a moral high ground that can be taken, at the core of it isn't theft: it's that customers have the choice to find a better deal and someone offered it. I've seen to many businesses even locally crumble because they stuck to what they wanted to do instead of trying to please the customer.

I don't see Jim posting these videos somewhere else ( http://www.youtube.com/user/JimSterling/videos ). Please try again.

Keep in mind that the reason businesses fail, is that they do not adapt to change. There are hundreds of news sites out there, why use this one? That's why the newspapers collapsed.

Doesn't it seem like a laughable joke that the newspaper wants you to pay 2$/day for their print version, when their online version is available for free? Then they plop a paywall in front and you go to another news site, because you were only coming to your local paper out of convenience. It's more convenient to not have to jump through a paywall just to view news. It's not more convenient to have Jim come entertain you personally.

Same with commenting on a site. I will refuse absolutely to use facebook. Therefor I will not give a site that requires it the extra page-views and ad revenue they would get had they were to moderate the comments instead of outsourcing it to Facebook.

I use Adblock and Noscript. Honestly, i don't feel being a "pirate", a "thief" or something like that. I just keep my PC free of invasive malware, spyware and other things like that.
I don't feel bad, i'm just protecting my privacy and my computer. You can say what you want, it's my right like on tv, i can skip advertising, i've the right to protect my pc.
Period.

Since Jim asked nicely, i disabled it for the Escapist but if any advertising is intrusive a single time, i will put it back.

Lovesfool:
*snip*

Most insightful comment of the whole thread. Thanks for your perspective.

I downloaded my first adblocking software after having my computer crippled by malicious code from an online advertisement on a reputable site. If content creators had defended their space as you suggest, I never would have known about their existance. I suspect many others found out about them the same way.

So after Jim asked nicely, I added escapist to my whitelist. It's currently the only site on that list that runs more than simple banner ads. I'll have to keep an eye on what comes through this channel I've opened.

I have actually disabled adblock on escapist because of this video. Since getting adblock, I kind of just left it running, I have never stopped to think to disable it. I will certainly keep the escapist unblocked as long as the ads don't become intrusive, like pausing the video or popping up and covering its content. I will however pop it back on as soon as they do and you'll receive some internet tatt as my condolences.

yeah well
that only lasted two days before I got too bothered by not being able to just look through threads without having some comerical blast from my speakers and me searching for the thing to figure I cant disable it...
hey, I really want to support this site, but does it have to be such a pain in the rear?

I always whitelist sites that I frequent, unless the ads are so intrusive that I'm left no other choice. When it comes to that however, the site is rarely worth frequenting at all. The Escapist is one of the rare cases in the middle where the site itself is okay, but the ads are so much worse than one you'd expect. Fortunately the ads only intervene when videos are being played and not ordinary articles are being read

When it comes to ads I don't consider them a sort of payment, mainly because I don't view "game journalism" as much of a job. Whitelisting the escapist works because Jim personally asks, and because he wants to continue working with his hobby, not because something of great value would be lost if he could no longer do this.

A lot of sites keep you from reading their full articles if you're blocking their ads, and from what I can read, the escapist is not one of those sites. Which to me, says that they do not view the ad-viewing as a sort of entrance-fee, but rather as a sort of bonus. If they don't, and actually expect to make a living off of this site, they would REALLY have to start improving the quality of articles, videos, forum-moderation and journalistic integrity.

Uhura:

boltronics:
I think the negative publicity around Escapist blocking AdBlock users is actually how I first heard about the Escapist website! (yes - this looks like the article: http://beta.slashdot.org/story/134516 ). Even though that was years ago, it has left a negative image of Escapist imprinted in my memory from those events which has always stayed with me. This is also one reason why I've never bothered to really participate in the forums or join the community. I'm a RequestPolicy/NoScript/Self-Destructing Cookies/UAControl/AdBlock Plus/HTTPS Everywhere/Smart Referer user, have been for years, given talks on how to use them, etc. so I have had to accept that Escapist might decide to ban my account at any moment.

I really do believe this site would be better in the long run if Escapist simply encouraged people to disable Adblock, and did not take such aggressive action against those who use it. I might personally block ads, but I might also recommend and post links to Escapist - to be viewed by people who likely will not all block ads. Further, Escapist would have a higher chance of monetising a non-paying adblock-using reader in the future, as opposed to someone who was banned and left with a bad experience to whine about.

Escapist doesn't ban users who use AdBlock. They hand out warnings for people who talk about AdBlock on the forums (obviously you can talk about in this thread, but it's a topic that should be otherwise avoided) and you can get 7 warnings before you get banned. They also don't block people who use AdBlock and they don't try to hunt down people who use it. So the rules are not that strict anymore (and according to your link, many of the bans the article mentions were later reversed... so that doesn't sound that strict either).

OT: Yeah, I don't mind watching ads to support the content creators. I also don't get most of the intrusive ads people have mentioned in this thread (probably due to my location) so I guess that's why it's easier to avoid that temptation.

They don't even necessarily do that. I've spoken about using adblock a couple of times, and I haven't suffered mod wrath, although it's possible I'm out of line and just didn't get the warning. But that's because, like I'm guessing boltronics, I use things like adblock and noscript type add ons for additional security. Having being scriptjacked before and had to put up with a lot of BS to strip the Malware out of my PC, and others, it's just a must when browsing the net for me.

However, I know that the escapist needs it's ad revenue, as do many of the sites I frequent. So, I put them on the whitelist. That way, the site earns the money it needs to provide free content, and I get to feel good about it without spending anything. Which actually reminded me, I've got a whole bunch of things I have to put back on my whitelist since my last browser cleansing.

If you have to use adblocking software of any kind, put the good stuff that you like, want to support, or even just visit regularly on there. The escapist is pretty unlikely to give you anything dodgy, and the moderation team and the staff work hard at making the site well worth using, so they've got even more of an interest than I do in keeping dodgy malware away. And it gives them basically free money for adverstising you can pay nominal attention to. Plus it'll save you in the long run when sites begin implementing software to force you to unblock them (And there are numerous sites that tell you upfront that they can see you're not viewing ads. If they think it'll help make their sites worth running, some of them will do it eventually).

Thanatos2k:

It's decent but not an entirely accurate description. Often, B has controls they can use to block certain types of things at the C and D level.

They can, but as Kross pointed out, (C) can restrict those measures if they feel like it.

Also, the many Cs of the world are working really hard to keep out the disreputable Ds, some far more effectively than others. When is the last time you saw malware get hosted on the front page of Yahoo, ESPN, or Forbes?

Forbes, actually, last August.
I found the "hard component" (saved to hard drive, not in RAM) in the Temp folder, but since I keep that folder sandboxed (it's an extremely common target location for malware on Windows systems), it didn't do anything. I found Forbes webmaster contact info, and forwarded the issue. Sure enough, it was fixed in under a week.

Before that, a vulnerability in Internet Explorer let malware load through Java.
Normally I don't use IE because it's a buggy, bloated piece of shit. But I had no choice in the matter because of MyMathLab; a system my university math dept contracted to administer quizzes and homework for the "bulk" math classes, and it only supported IE.
(and that was literally the ONLY THING I used IE for. No other website. Not even quick casual traffic.)

The part that loaded the malware? An embedded ad on the main site that MyMathLab was hosting for their partner's educational software. Pre-loaded the script to exploit Java, right before you logged on and loaded the Java Applet to do schoolwork. (expertly placed)

And I wasn't the only one that had to deal with it; nearly everyone in my class was complaining about that by the semester's end.

The problem most of the time is a lack of interested high quality Ds and too much space on Bs. So rather than not show anything, Bs will let Cs show the lower quality Ds just to make some money. This *is* a problem at the B level, they do not have to sign up with every C on the block and let the highest ROI ad through.

Fair enough.
Though my point about vigilance remains. In practice, the only thing end users can do is respond to the problems that slip down through the chain. Which in context, disproves the notion that ad-blockers are used solely for "entitled" purposes.

On the 4th January yahoo had malware infected ads

Source's http://edition.cnn.com/2014/01/05/tech/yahoo-malware-attack/

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1009_3-57616617-83/yahoo-users-exposed-to-malware-attack/

Please excuse my bad English

Thanatos2k:

Atmos Duality:

KisaiTenshi:

It's the website itself that decides who advertises on their site. That is handled by whoever is the broker for the advertiser and website.

Yes, they do decide who advertises on the site.
And that "who" includes enormous internet ad-conglomerates like Google, Doubleclick, Quantiserve etc. all of whom have an incredibly large pool of clients.

If you're following so far, the web of relationships so far looks like this:

(A) End Users <<< (B) Content Sites (ie, The Escapist) << (C) Ad-conglomerates << (D) Clients Looking for Ads

Now, (D) wants exposure for their stuff to reach (A).

(D) can be anyone. From a legitimate business to a public-awareness group to scum-sucking thieves posing as a business or web service.

(C) takes on clients from (D) and pays (B) for exposure to (A).
Since (C)'s main goal is exposure, it's in their best interest to get as wide of a reach as possible towards (A).
The larger (C)'s network, the more value they have to (D).

Eventually, (C) got too big to care if some illegitimate clients from (D) slipped through (malware, scammers, thieves, etc). It's not like anyone could sue them; it's not their fault, it's just (D)'s.
So they will gladly route any shit tagged for a given demographic to (B) regardless of what it actually is.

If/when (A) has problems because of (D)'s dickery and (C)'s negligence, (B) is stuck in the unpleasant position of having to listen to (A)'s complaints directly. Contrary to what you think, (B) has less say in what (C) gives them because (C) is what keeps (B) in business, and (C) knows it. (B) may file complaints or blacklist domains owned by (D) routed to them via (C) but it's an uphill battle for (B) just due to the volume of crap (C) routes from (D) or due to limitations forced upon (B) by (C)'s system

It's decent but not an entirely accurate description. Often, B has controls they can use to block certain types of things at the C and D level. Also, the many Cs of the world are working really hard to keep out the disreputable Ds, some far more effectively than others. When is the last time you saw malware get hosted on the front page of Yahoo, ESPN, or Forbes?

The problem most of the time is a lack of interested high quality Ds and too much space on Bs. So rather than not show anything, Bs will let Cs show the lower quality Ds just to make some money. This *is* a problem at the B level, they do not have to sign up with every C on the block and let the highest ROI ad through.

KisaiTenshi:

Redd the Sock:

Companies that ignore the consumer base's desires usually don't stay in business long. No one is owed someone's business, and while there's a moral high ground that can be taken, at the core of it isn't theft: it's that customers have the choice to find a better deal and someone offered it. I've seen to many businesses even locally crumble because they stuck to what they wanted to do instead of trying to please the customer.

I don't see Jim posting these videos somewhere else ( http://www.youtube.com/user/JimSterling/videos ). Please try again.

Keep in mind that the reason businesses fail, is that they do not adapt to change. There are hundreds of news sites out there, why use this one? That's why the newspapers collapsed.

Doesn't it seem like a laughable joke that the newspaper wants you to pay 2$/day for their print version, when their online version is available for free? Then they plop a paywall in front and you go to another news site, because you were only coming to your local paper out of convenience. It's more convenient to not have to jump through a paywall just to view news. It's not more convenient to have Jim come entertain you personally.

Same with commenting on a site. I will refuse absolutely to use facebook. Therefor I will not give a site that requires it the extra page-views and ad revenue they would get had they were to moderate the comments instead of outsourcing it to Facebook.

The converse to that is why did I and others buy print copies of things like Penny Arcade, Megatokyo, or DVD collections of the Angry Video game nerd all full of stuff available for free. I like the material, the stuff's in good quality, and it come without intrusive ads even if I don't have a net connection. Why buy a book when the library is free, or go to a movie when one's are on the TV right now, or pay $60 for a video game with so many free ones out there? Competing with free is difficult, just not impossible, but resisted because it means you have to strive to be good, not just decent.

And in many ways, think about where we are. So much gaming news is really just more marketing. This game has this feature is less news than a commercial to say that if you like this feature, buy this game. We watch and make big deals out of trailers which are pure advertising, and reviews are independent advertising, just ads that aren't promising a glowing sales pitch. We come here for things that do all the things ads are supposed to do, so if we're blocking other forms, that a sign the company behind them is missing something.

Redd the Sock:
snip

Im sorry but just because you say its the "price" doesnt make it so.

Just because you say its "stealing" doesnt make it so.

Using addblockers and other tools to protect your system from unwanted malware is infact not against the law so what you think is theft and what is not has absolutely no meaning whatsoever.

The only counter argument you seem to have is a silly "nu-uh" wich honestly doesnt really make for a compelling argument.

Come back and call people criminals when they actually break the law. Till then I would suggest you stop accusing people who use addblockers of "stealing" content.

Oh and btw.

If the "price" was indeed having to watch the adds then the Escapist would need a Eula or something similiar you would have to agree to before you can watch the videos on here. You know.. a legal agreement between them and their "customers"

Whats this? Such a contract does not exist?

Well shave my legs and call me grandma... you have even less of an argument now...

See thats what i meant "no strings attached". I dont sign anything before I watch the videos, so the Escapist has no legal claim here... no matter how much you say otherwise.

But all this could be circumvented if the Escapist would pay more close attention to the adds they host. Its their job to make sure that the adds dont contain malware, dont crash browsers or videos and dont make me want to rip out my ears. If they host an add that makes me want to not visit their website then they are doing it WRONG.

The escapist doesnt owe me anything, and i dont owe them anything. I cant demand that they cater to my interests, and they cant demand that i "inconvieniece" myselfe for their sake. I dont do that for EA.. i wont do it for the escapist.

I'm selective in my blocking. I do have adblock however I do whitelist sites where the adverts aren't too intrusive. If intrusive adverts show up I will adblock the place and give it a few weeks (that is if there's no way to give feedback). Unless it's a stealth pop-up or autoplaying loud video then I won't generally block it though.

As a content producer myself on a very small level. I'm going to probably break a few NDA things here and give a few stats.

I once had 5 ad clicks on a dating site advert playing on a site I operate.
For 5 clicks I earned 1p that's about $0.02 .

When I had an advert for Sony's Planetside 2 running I had 1 click on it.
For that 1 click I earned 0.05 about $0.07

Some companies are far better than others.

From another Sony advert (I don't know what for) I earned 0.15 about $0.23 from a single click.

the worse the advert not only the more annoying and intrusive it gets but infact the less it pays and the more of that level of advert needs to be played to make the same money.

Redd the Sock:

The converse to that is why did I and others buy print copies of things like Penny Arcade, Megatokyo, or DVD collections of the Angry Video game nerd all full of stuff available for free. I like the material, the stuff's in good quality, and it come without intrusive ads even if I don't have a net connection. Why buy a book when the library is free, or go to a movie when one's are on the TV right now, or pay $60 for a video game with so many free ones out there? Competing with free is difficult, just not impossible, but resisted because it means you have to strive to be good, not just decent.

And in many ways, think about where we are. So much gaming news is really just more marketing. This game has this feature is less news than a commercial to say that if you like this feature, buy this game. We watch and make big deals out of trailers which are pure advertising, and reviews are independent advertising, just ads that aren't promising a glowing sales pitch. We come here for things that do all the things ads are supposed to do, so if we're blocking other forms, that a sign the company behind them is missing something.

Think about how many people pirate content to make it free for them. That comes back to the circular logic in this thread.

Not watching/letting the ads run = Not Paying for the Content = More convenience = Content creators get paid less.
Counter-argument
Buying Merchandise = Supporting the Creator = Creator gets less than 20%, Post office and shipping companies make all the money.

That's why so many "free content" types like to sell T-shirts. It's a low risk investment. Getting books or discs made can cost a few thousand dollars, and can only be justified with preorders. There's also risks of being charged back (which happens with kickstarter too.) Every person I've talked to about Kickstarter wishes they set the reward pledges that ship items higher because many of them lost money on the shipping of physical items. Think about that the next time people light the torches and decide to mob someone for not being expedient on their kickstarter.

Paywalls and Advertisements are mutually exclusive to each other. Everything else is complimentary and should not be used as an excuse to block the ads or not pay for the subscription.

Karadalis:

Redd the Sock:
snip

Im sorry but just because you say its the "price" doesnt make it so.

Just because you say its "stealing" doesnt make it so.

Using addblockers and other tools to protect your system from unwanted malware is infact not against the law so what you think is theft and what is not has absolutely no meaning whatsoever.

Except most reputable sites won't run those adverts or will use vetting companies or ad service providers who vet the adverts in advance to prevent these things.

Saying all adverts carry malware is just plain wrong. It would be like building a nuclear bunker and sealing yourself in because some people in the outside world have colds.

You can both have an ad blocker and support sites by white listing them.

Adverts pay so little (especially bad ones) because they don't expect people to care and because they know about ad blocking now. I've hear horror stories of sites giving their monthly view counts over and advertising companies only paying them for 60% of the views claiming "Oh yeh we believe 40% of all those views would have the adverts blocked so we won't pay for that %" This is why the even more worrying rise in pay per click adverts where the site host them free without being paid unless there is a click.

Karadalis:

The only counter argument you seem to have is a silly "nu-uh" wich honestly doesnt really make for a compelling argument.

Come back and call people criminals when they actually break the law. Till then I would suggest you stop accusing people who use addblockers of "stealing" content.

Oh and btw.

If the "price" was indeed having to watch the adds then the Escapist would need a Eula or something similiar you would have to agree to before you can watch the videos on here. You know.. a legal agreement between them and their "customers"

To give you an example of what Blip TV did which caused outrage for a while was force people who ad blocked to sit for 5 minutes with a screen displaying a message saying why they shouldn't ad block. It really annoyed people but it pointed out how a 30 second advert pays for the show and it's far more annoying to a content producer for people to block the adverts and be racking up huge viewing numbers only to be paid next to nothing. It forced people to understand and feel a small portion of the annoyance of the producer.

Karadalis:

Whats this? Such a contract does not exist?

Well shave my legs and call me grandma... you have even less of an argument now...

See thats what i meant "no strings attached". I dont sign anything before I watch the videos, so the Escapist has no legal claim here... no matter how much you say otherwise.

You use their service. If they wanted they could disrupt and adjust said service. Just because it's free doesn't mean you're entitled to it.

e.g. what blip TV did

Karadalis:

But all this could be circumvented if the Escapist would pay more close attention to the adds they host. Its their job to make sure that the adds dont contain malware, dont crash browsers or videos and dont make me want to rip out my ears. If they host an add that makes me want to not visit their website then they are doing it WRONG.

you know what, I know this is part way through a post but I'd like now to take the time to Thank Jim Sterling for actually working to make adverts better. About a year ago I tweeted to him about a pop out advert on destructoid actually covering content. That advert had been there for days, after me a small time user tweeted about the issue it was promptly fixed and the advert removed.

Yes there are bad adverts out there but if they show up I ad block for a week or so then undo it to see if it's changed.

Karadalis:

The escapist doesnt owe me anything, and i dont owe them anything. I cant demand that they cater to my interests, and they cant demand that i "inconvieniece" myselfe for their sake. I dont do that for EA.. i wont do it for the escapist.

The difference is EA generally asks you to pay money first then inconveniences you. Or inconveniences you on a free product then asks you to pay to remove it.

The subscription model is designed to work by removing that obstruction however the obstruction in this case is also an alternative method of payment for the content.

IceForce:

Aardvaarkman:
Can you tell us how far up The Escapist's management chain this authorisation of warning for people simply admitting to using ad blockers in this thread went? Who was it that approved the terms of this supposed "armistice"?

Aardvaarkman:
we still don't have any answers as to who is responsible for deciding on the forum rules and exceptions for this thread. Even the amendment on the first post is signed with an anonymous "Mods" as the author.

I've only been vaguely following this. Has this question been answered yet?
If not, it's almost like the mods are deliberately avoiding answering it, for some reason.

And where are the mods anyway? I haven't seen any for several pages now.

Honestly, if you guys want to see behind the curtain, there's not a lot of interaction between the contributors and moderators. Most of the comment threads that explode, the mods don't find out until it's appeared several times in the Mod Queue, or in some cases, we see something on the front page that looks like it should have an explosive comment thread. We're just regular users, for the most part, so a lot of what we see is the same way most users see it.

In this case, Jim had mentioned this video coming on Twitter, and another mod had said one or two comments in passing about it. Nothing was set in stone, but it was pretty much common sense to suggest that there'd be a loose amnesty in place for discussion about ad blocking as a practice, seeing as it was the topic in question. We didn't really know what the content of his video would be, so we couldn't really put anything set in stone in place, as that would require a fair amount of time going between the mods and the community manager.

Generally speaking, the editorial staff at the Escapist will not infringe on what a content creator makes. As Jim mentioned in an earlier video, when faced with a non-PG-13 contented video, instead of changing his video, they put up an age gate. Because of that, comment threads for those pieces of content tend to have rules adjusted on the fly by the Community Manager and the moderation team.

The appended section to the opening post was written collectively by the mods who were awake and alert when the video went live. We discussed options, spoke about the best possible solution we could put together (in under an hour, as from the time we first got a mod online to the time that edit was made was about an hour from video going live) without having a Code of Conduct rewrite. The result, what you see, is our best shot at making this thread a reasonable place for discussion about ad blocking as a practice, without unduly circumventing the purpose for the rule.

As the opening post suggests, there's no universally agreed rule as to what is or isn't acceptable, so there's going to be some disagreement, even among mods. So, because of that, we clearly link the appeals form, and suggest everyone who feels their moderation was out of line use it. Mistakes will, inevitably, happen.

So, in short, we put together the best we could under the circumstances.

Media companies, specifically those in the magazine industry, shot themselves in the foot by offering online content for free when the internet started getting big. The scramble to generate revenue led to the only option they had left - putting ads on their website, which most consumers find distasteful and/or distracting.

The real issue is that the content that websites like The Escapist offer is not particularly special and their place can be filled by any number of communities due to the open nature of the internet. If The Escapist went away, everyone would just move somewhere else, much as people did when sites like 1UP essentially folded. And if all the media sites folded, people would still form internet communities to exchange their thoughts on games, reviews, etc.

The more nefarious issue I see is that websites and even print are moving to native advertising where they essentially give PR companies direct access to their content systems and they can feed in stories promoting their brands. The New York Times published one about the "success" Samsung had in sponsoring the Oscars that was clearly a PR piece, yet was not labeled as an advertisement in any way. Sites like Escapist will not doubt move this way, if they haven't already.

If you want a prime example of native advertising, here you go: http://www.today.com/health/man-loses-56-pounds-after-eating-only-mcdonalds-six-months-2D79329158

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