Alex Santoso's Comments

There is another quirk in the admin: if you're in "Manage", then you click on "Write," after publishing the post, you will be dropped back to "Manage."

I find that you need to be on the dashboard home, then you can write posts after posts with no problem.
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I don't get it either, but that's not unusual when it comes to the good people of Canadia and their peculiar sport of hookey or something rather.

While talkin' about the sport, I miss those little firetrail they put on the puck. I can't see what's going on without it.

And what's up with the brawls? Are those like features of the sport?
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@Keath - I don't know what you mean by equating Neatorama to Boing Boing, but I quite like that blog and hold it in high respect. So, thanks (I guess)

@RAnnieB - I can see your point from a marketer's perspective. It's very cogent and logical, actually.

@Chris Shaffer - Right now, the percentage of people who use ad block is still small as compared to the rest of the general Internet users.

That percentage would probably not change much in the future - the demise of ad-supported content has been predicted many times in the past, and it's still the most viable business method today.

What I learned from this discussion is how people who use ad block view their use of the plugin: it's like they feel it's their right to block ads.

This is fundamentally different from how I view things: if I'm not happy with a service (i.e. ad-supported content), then it's my right not to frequent that establishment (i.e. not visit the website), but it's not my right to use the service anyway and subvert payment to that service (i.e. visit the website, get the content, then ad block the ads).

As I've said above, I certainly have done nothing to stop delivering content to people who block Neatorama's ads.

I have, however, learned a lot about people's views on ads.
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@ThomasH: Of course it’s not stealing. By that logic, closing my eyes would be stealing too and @donna: No. It’s equivalent to not reading the ads in your newspaper.

I disagree with your analogy - as I've said before, I don't think any webmaster would have any problem if you avert your eyes, ignore the ads, etc. You can go to the bathroom during TV commercial breaks, turn down the volume, change channels. You can ignore ads in your newspaper. No problem.

The problem with ad blocking is that it's an automated way to circumvent ads from loading. It's like a device that automatically skips ads on TV, or blanks out ads in a newspaper (okay, no such thing exist for newspaper, but you get the point).
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@Goober: My analogy is exact. They offer the content for free, *then* expect me to live up to their terms.

Not exactly - ads and content are displayed concurrently. Content are offered with ads.

In whichever way, the analogy completely breaks down if you repeatedly visit a website and block their ads. By the second visit, you'd know that their content is ad supported.

But let's take your lunch in the park to its conclusion. If you don't want to pay for the lunch, you don't take it, right? After all, that's fair.

But by blocking the ads, isn't what you're doing taking the lunch and then not paying? A better course of action is not visiting the website you don't want to see ads on instead of blocking the ads.
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@Sean McKenna: it's the reverse, actually. You are paying for your internet connection, but bandwidth is paid by the websites that you visit.

@Mike Stone: that's an interesting thought. I don't believe that CPM ads are affected by whether or not people click on the ads. That's why they're paid per impression. The ad price is set before they go on display. Perhaps you're thinking of CPA (cost per action) ads?

I wholeheartedly agree with you that there is value to a visitor that is beyond their "eyeball"-share (if you can call it that). Neatorama grew by word-of-mouth and it has its readers to thank.

I don't have any plan to block users that block our ads. In fact, we have always provided content of the blog on RSS and email subscription that don't carry ads. But I'm afraid the reality of it is, there's no free lunch: the cost of running the blog means that ads are here to stay.
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@Thomas: "am I a thief for changing the channel during commercials?"

Ad blocking is not equivalent to going to the bathroom during a TV commercial break or changing the channels. It's equivalent to installing an automatic device which sole purpose is to skip the ads from ever playing.
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@Steohawk: I don't understand exactly what you meant by what you meant. I don't think ads are cached, but websites don't get paid if the CPM ads don't display.

@required_name: "hey, I never agreed to commercials in the first place, you just pushed them onto me and now you’re suprised I’m not sitting down to swallow and burp?"

Well, have you ever agreed to pay tax? Ever tried to talk to a merchant to take off those pesky sales tax because, hey, you've never agreed to pay taxes?

@MadMolecule: It's an interesting comparison - but I think it's different that a donation. Donation implies that there is an intrinsic choice in giving or not giving.

But I agree with your later statement. There is no free lunch, because hosting and bandwidth cost money.
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@windowshoppist: indeed, there is an escalation in ads trying to grab a viewer's attention. Internet ad used to be simple banners, but when readers ignore those, they become more and more complex (and annoying). It's like an arms race between ads and people's inattention.

I agree with you on intrusive ads, and refuse to display pop unders, pop overs, ads that self-play with sound, and floaters. That said, I opted to run Flash banners and expandables, because they represent a huge amount of inventory of ads.

As a webmaster, my relationship with ads is sometimes strained: many times we have problems with a particular ad (that play sound automatically) or flash annoyingly, etc. and we have to hunt down who serves up those ads and shut them down. It's not as straight forward as you'd think, because ad space gets re-sold through multiple ad servers.
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If you know what the problem is, oxyacetylene, perhaps you'll change your opinion: the FAA has a regulation that says cable bundles in the wheel well should be tied at an interval of exactly 1 inch apart.

The bundles were tied, but some aren't exactly 1 inches apart: 1 inch and a quarter to an inch to a half. And this isn't exactly a new problem: it was diagnosed as early as 2006.

Some experts say that while it's a problem that definitely should be fixed, it's not a critical problem. It's not a problem that require mass groundings of all MD-80 airplanes. Some even said that the grounding is an effort by the authorities to appear tough.
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@Goober: Not exactly. The content is free because it's ad supported.

Your analogy isn't exactly right. Perhaps this is better: it's like sponsored lunch at the park, where you get food in return for listening to an ad pitch / a slice of your attention.

Obviously, it's up to you to buy the product/follow through with the ad. It's even up to you to ignore the pitch (avert your eyes from the ad, etc) But ad blocking is like taking the food and not letting the pitch through.
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I flew only a handful of times on American, so I can't tell whether the quality of the plane ride is bad because of turbulence (which is out of the airline's control), small planes, or the old age of the equipment.

One thing's for sure: American Airline planes are old ...
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I used to fly United a lot (when I lived near the San Francisco airport), so I've been on a lot of United flights. In almost every flight, there's at least one cranky United stewardess. :)

Granted this was during some sort of a paycheck reduction / protest time period, so maybe they had changed since then.
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PotatoCouch is right that at present time, the percentage of people who adblock aren't significant enough to make a big difference.

But I'm interested in the fundamental moral/ethical (if you can call it that) question of ad blocking.

@Steohawk: branding is a big part of advertising. So even if you don't click on a banner ad, the actual display of the ad itself is enough for the advertiser. These ads pay on a per impression basis (or CPM, in contrast to other types of ad that pay on a per click or CPC basis).

If you never and won't click a CPC ad and you block the ads, then the web owner isn't out any money. But that's not the case for a CPM ad. Granted each pageview is miniscule in monetary terms, but those are micropayments to the blog owner that you're denying him or her. Isn't that theft?

@thegiantsnail: It's truly up to you :) I prefer our readers to be happy (and presumably then tell their family and friends) and won't force anyone to unblock Neatorama. And I thank you for saying that we're a nice site!

Overall, I'm ambivalent about ad blocking - I can see both perspectives. So that's why I'm interested in your views.
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This happened about a year ago. We went on a family vacation to Paris and got a great deal with American Airlines.

Things went wrong almost immediately: American Airlines lost our luggage when we arrived in Paris. This would be an inconvenience for any traveler, but it's a MAJOR inconvenience for a family traveling with a baby (We packed our baby food in the luggage).

When they finally delivered our bags, they didn't give us any receipt proving that they lost our luggage. When we said to them we'd need some sort of paperwork so we can claim our expenses to our travel insurance, they simply couldn't be bothered.

When we arrived in Boston for our return trip, our connecting flight to Los Angeles was canceled and we had to stay overnight in Boston. (We had ran out of baby food at this time, but it was easily available in supermarkets in the States).

And that leg was canceled permanently - we had to fly to Chicago and then to Los Angeles. Fine. So we did. And when we arrived at Chicago - our flight to LA was ... you guessed it - canceled!

After hundreds of people scrambled to rebook their flights, the flight was un-canceled! Those people who ran to the front and got on another flight couldn't get back on this one!

For all of our troubles, AA sent us a $100 voucher, which I promptly just throw away. I like the people in AA (they're much nicer than United, which has surly stewardesses - oh except in France, they're all rude), but AA's planes are just too old.
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Profile for Alex Santoso

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