Comedy Central South Park Eyeblaster ads on GPF

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Would you object if the Eyeblaster South Park ad ran on the GPF site?

No way! Run with it!
27
26%
I won't like it, but I'll put up with it.
49
48%
Yes, if it's South Park; now if it were Battle Bots or something else...
16
16%
Absolutely Yes. I think the ad will be too intrusive.
11
11%
I will never read GPF again if this drivel appears on your site.
0
No votes
 
Total votes : 103

Comedy Central South Park Eyeblaster ads on GPF

Postby jtdarlington on Tue Sep 10, 2002 1:03 pm

Gang,

Keenspot has been given an incredible advertising opportunity. Comedy Central, the all-comedy cable network and home of such programs as BattleBots, South Park, and the original British Whose Line Is It Anyway?, is looking to run highly targetted ads across the Keenspot network. The ads will be for the show South Park and will be offered at an unheard-of rate of $20 CPM ($20 per 1000 adviews, where as most banner ads only offer $0.10 to $0.20 CPM). This is a massive opportunity and may lead to more targetted ads from large companies, meaning more cash for your favorite Keenspot cartoonists.

There's just one catch. Thes ads are in some ways much more intrusive than ordinary pop-up ads. They are large and animated, often have sound, and overlap much of the browser window. They often use Java, JavaScript, Flash, and other gimmicks of web browser tomfoolery. They will be specially designed with a cookie to prevent them from being show more than once per web surfer per day. Here's some samples of other ads on the official Eyeblaster site:

http://eyeblaster.com/WebSite/Gallery.htm

Now, for the record, I've already requested that these ads should not be shown on the GPF site. Personally, I think they're just too intrusive. I don't want to subject you guys to this. However, many of the other Keenspotters have already agreed, so there's a good chance you'll find them popping up across the network before long if the contract is signed.

This thread serves two purposes. The first is to act as a warning, so you guys know they're coming (and you'll hopefully have a refuge from them there here at GPF :wink: ). Second is to get your opinions. Yes, I've already opted out of the campaign, and I'm not backing down from that stance. But I still want to hear what you guys think. Would you object if these ads were shown on our site? Why would you object?

Please take some time to post on the poll above and let me know what you think, and post any additional comments below. I always value reader feedback, and every voice out there is important to me. I would never run something like this willingly without first getting your opinions.
Last edited by jtdarlington on Mon Oct 07, 2002 12:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby sillyname99 on Tue Sep 10, 2002 1:29 pm

If they weren't offering a ****load of money, I would say no way. But for that kind of money for you all, I'll put up with it.
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Postby Wyvern the Newer on Tue Sep 10, 2002 2:44 pm

I went to the website you linked to and found that even their webpage is hard to deal with and rude. (A properly designed site should adapt to the size of the browser window, not resize it to grab the whole screen.)

My was like SilyName99's; I didn't like the idea but was willing to put up with it for the amazing amounts of money they were offering. Having seen their advertisements, though, I think they might be more trouble than they're worth; the ones I saw sat over the content and were not happy about going away. There's also the audio factor, in that many people browse in fixed company and don't want the attention.

Reluctantly, I think GPF is probably better off passing this up.
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Postby helva834 on Tue Sep 10, 2002 3:36 pm

Seems annoying, but for that amount of money, to keep Keenspot going, I'd put up with it...
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Postby showler on Tue Sep 10, 2002 4:31 pm

As a PREEMIE I suspect I'll avoid this in either case. :D

Of course, I won't make you any money either. :(
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It depends.

Postby [missing user] on Tue Sep 10, 2002 6:18 pm

Well, it depends. I've looked at their ads and some are much more intrusive than others, but all are attention getters that give a "commercial break" feel to them.

The popups that you have to click to get rid of are annoying. The ones that animate and then automatically reduce in size or go away are better.

And the one that changes the background briefly to an ad (usually a logo like Nike) then goes back to normal are not very intrusive but noticable.

Of course, it would be one more reason for people to buy the premium package to avoid the ads.

<disclaimer>Note that I am thinking like a webmaster and not a user. I actually own several web properties and am considering EyeBlaster for one of my sites.</disclaimer>
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poll answer

Postby Captain Noman Nemo on Tue Sep 10, 2002 7:07 pm

i say run with it. not to sound crass, but hey this is a business! you gotta pay the bills. and my goodness clicking to get rid of an advertisement can be annoying, but for a quality comic i'd glad take the .4 seconds to hit alt-F4 when a pop-up comes up. i just wish there were more comics out there that i considered to be worth it.
keep up the excellent work jeff!!
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Postby MaxJenius on Tue Sep 10, 2002 9:16 pm

I view it this way. Keenspot has been becoming a greater source of my enjoyment these days...

I would love to endure a few painful ads to support all the artists here. (especially Jeff) ^_^
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Postby kirby1024 on Tue Sep 10, 2002 10:53 pm

I would prefer not to have Pop-ups, especially those which act like Crazy Bob ads. But, Considering the serious amounts of money being offered, I'd understand completely if you chose to take this course.

I wouldn't like it, but I'd understand it.
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Postby The Roach on Wed Sep 11, 2002 3:10 am

I looked at the site, and it did not try to re-size my Window. Also, several of the ads I looked at failed due to needing Flash (which I'll activate only if there is no way around it). Also, the ads were quite happy with closing when I clocked opn the 'close'-button, ansd the way they are set up, they have to be funny / intriguing to prevent people form closing them at once.

So, all in all, I don't think it's that bad and I could live with them...
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Postby jtdarlington on Wed Sep 11, 2002 4:29 am

Thanks for your input, gang. Keep 'em coming. I want to know what you think, and I'm actually surprised so many of you have said you'd put up with the ads if it means we get more money. I'm not sure how this translates to the entire readership, though... out of 12,000 readers, only a handful of you are dedicated enough to come here regularly. My guess would be you're more loyal to the strip than most readers, and you'd be willing to put up with more to support the comic. (Not to say that those who don't come here aren't loyal; you guys just might not have a social life. :wink: )

Here's a little more info on the ad: Keenspot is working on a "user opt out" function that will let individual visitors to the sites to opt out. Instead of having an entire comic and it's full readership opt out, each individual surfer would have to opt out to block the ad. Personally, I think this is a bit overboard, and I'm still against the ad in general for GPF. But I promised I would ask you guys about it, so please give me your opinions on it. Since the poll has already started, I can't exactly add a new option, so just post your thoughts.

Now, some replies to individual comments:

Wyvern the Newer wrote:I went to the website you linked to and found that even their webpage is hard to deal with and rude. (A properly designed site should adapt to the size of the browser window, not resize it to grab the whole screen.)


I think that's mostly an MSIE thing; I don't think it did that to me in Netscape. Then again, I almost always run with JavaScript turned of in Netscape anyhow, so maybe it's a JavaScript thing....

Wyvern the Newer wrote:There's also the audio factor, in that many people browse in fixed company and don't want the attention.


This was another concern I had. A pop-up is one thing; I've developed a lightning-quick Alt+F4 reflex myself. But I know there's been plenty of times I've rushed to mute the sound while I'm at work when an annoying audio ad came up. (Part of me still thinks computers aimed at corporate buyers should be shipped without sound cards.)

showler wrote:As a PREEMIE I suspect I'll avoid this in either case. :D Of course, I won't make you any money either. :(


Yes and no. As a PREEMIE, you shouldn't see the ads at all. But since you paid for a subscription, we're still getting money... unless you "paid" the subscription fee to that shady guy in the trenchcoat, sunglasses, and fake mustache 100 feet from the main entrance. You should only be giving money to the guy with the blue hair and multiple body piercings. :wink:

WisTex wrote:Of course, it would be one more reason for people to buy the premium package to avoid the ads.


Several people "behind the scenes" have said things like this, but I personally don't like that logic. I think PREMIUM should sell itself, attracting folks with the added value of exclusive content and the knowledge that your money is going to the people you want it to go to (the cartoonists) and not some third party advertiser. "Let's annoy the heck out of people so they'll subscribe" doesn't sit well with me. I'd think most readers would rather respond with "Okay, if you're going to annoy the heck out of me, I'll take my business somewhere else." But that's not an argument I should be discussing here.
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Re: poll answer

Postby Pupkin on Wed Sep 11, 2002 5:14 am

Captain Noman Nemo wrote:not to sound crass, but hey this is a business! . . . i'd gladly take the .4 seconds to hit alt-F4 when a pop-up comes up.


Agreed.
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Postby [missing user] on Wed Sep 11, 2002 6:42 am

jtdarlington wrote:
WisTex wrote:Of course, it would be one more reason for people to buy the premium package to avoid the ads.


Several people "behind the scenes" have said things like this, but I personally don't like that logic. I think PREMIUM should sell itself, attracting folks with the added value of exclusive content and the knowledge that your money is going to the people you want it to go to (the cartoonists) and not some third party advertiser. "Let's annoy the heck out of people so they'll subscribe" doesn't sit well with me. I'd think most readers would rather respond with "Okay, if you're going to annoy the heck out of me, I'll take my business somewhere else." But that's not an argument I should be discussing here.


Agreed. For the record, I was just "stating the obvious" and not actually supporting that position.

Since some people buy the Premium package because they consider banner ads intrusive, I'm sure more will buy the Premium package because Eyeblaster ads are even more intrusive.

But to some, any ad is intrusive but they still don't want to pay for anything. (Of course, I wonder how they expect us to pay our bills with no ads and no sales, but that's beside the point). <point>
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Postby showler on Wed Sep 11, 2002 7:52 am

I must be a bit of a weirdo, because I've been lobbying the keenadmins to include an option in the "replacement banner" section that would allow the ads to still be shown.

I'm fortunate enough to be on a cable modem, so the speed of the site doesn't change noticeably with or without the ads. Mozilla does a great job of blocking the more annoying pop-up ads, so I don't see why Keenspot shouldn't get my ad-views. The problem right now is that the only way to allow the ads is to turn off the cookie, which prevents me from accessing the PREMIUM content.
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Postby CaptainAmerica on Wed Sep 11, 2002 10:22 am

I must be a weirdo too. And probably the only one with this opinion. I HATE South Park and all its evil spawn. I object more to the content than the actual ad.

I would definately understand the decision to go with it based on the financial opportunity. And it will not keep me from reading my favorite online comic (favorite non-online too).

I hate pop-ups, especially with sound (as I view GPF mostly at work). But, I figure it is your site, I can like it or lump it.

How many other sites do you think there are out there where the owner cares enough about his visitors (fans) to ask their opinion! Thank you, Jeff.
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Postby mouse on Wed Sep 11, 2002 11:45 am

yes, thanks for considering us! i myself object primarily because of the sound - both because i do read this at work, and because it really bugs me to suddenly hear strange unidentifiable noises (the ones in my head are bad enough :D ). at the same time, i hate to deprive you of the money. the individual opt-out option (if it really is feasible) sounds like it might be a good compromise.
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Postby jtdarlington on Wed Sep 11, 2002 12:45 pm

Grrr... I'm officially not happy with Internet Explorer right now. I despise having to retype a very long post when it crashes. Then again, I think Netscape would be crashing sooner, so I guess I shouldn't complain too much. I wonder if IBM would complain if I installed Mozilla on my work machine....

WisTex wrote:But to some, any ad is intrusive but they still don't want to pay for anything. (Of course, I wonder how they expect us to pay our bills with no ads and no sales, but that's beside the point).


What really gets my fur ruffled are the folks out there who claim to be "supporting" strips by inlining them, stealing our content and sticking us with the bandwidth bill, and calling it "promotion." It's one thing for an artist to do this willingly (I did when I first started), but it's another when the artist expressly forbids it and pleads with their readership not to. But that's another topic you don't want me wandering off to... :D

showler wrote:I must be a bit of a weirdo, because I've been lobbying the keenadmins to include an option in the "replacement banner" section that would allow the ads to still be shown.


Well, we all already knew you were a weirdo, showler... :wink:

While I think it's admirable that you'd want to continue to get ads while still paying the subscription, I don't think you should. Really, you're getting what you paid for: surfing the site without ads. Only recently have we added the PREMIUM-exclusive content... which I think is what should really drive subscriptions eventually, but the ad-free surfing is currently the big draw. No need paying for the same thing twice, in my opinion.

CaptainAmerica wrote:I must be a weirdo too. And probably the only one with this opinion. I HATE South Park and all its evil spawn. I object more to the content than the actual ad.


Personally, I don't want to be advertising for South Park either. I've watched a few episodes of the show, and while I have to admit I laughed a time or two, I was mostly disgusted with it. That's not the type of content I personally want to be associated with. That was a second, private reason for wanting to opt out of this campaign, but I know that opinion isn't shared by everyone.

Now, if this were an ad for BattleBots we were talking about, then I'd be in a real crisis of conscience. I think a BattleBots ad would be a perfect fit for GPF's audience, and I certainly wouldn't object to the content. (It's robot fightin' time, baby! :D ) However, this campaign isn't targetted at just Faulties; it's targetted at Keenspot readers as a whole, and you've got to admit, Comedy Central pegged our general audience pretty well.

CaptainAmerica wrote:How many other sites do you think there are out there where the owner cares enough about his visitors (fans) to ask their opinion! Thank you, Jeff.


Not many, unfortunately. But you guys are my bread and butter, so to speak, so your opinions are extremely valuable to me. If you guys aren't reading my strip, then... well... nobody's reading the strip. That means nobody buying books, merchandise, and other such things that may one day fulfill that half-baked dream I have of doing this stuff full-time for a living.

I'd still be agonizing of your opinions even if there wasn't money involved, because I'd want to make sure that you guys really enjoyed what you read. That's just part of who I am. :) :oops:

mouse wrote:yes, thanks for considering us! i myself object primarily because of the sound - both because i do read this at work, and because it really bugs me to suddenly hear strange unidentifiable noises...


I mentioned sound in my most recent objection to the rest of the Keenspotters. There's a rather healthy debate going on behind the scenes about this and, fortunately, it remains friendly and civil. But I am having to repeated define and defend my position. I don't want to be called down by my boss for sound suddenly exploding from my work machine, so I don't want you guys to be in the same boat. As I jokingly mentioned to the other 'Spotters, I actually kind of wish systems aimed at corporate buyers were still shipped without sound cards. :) (There's actually a machine on my side desk that doesn't have one.)

mouse wrote:the individual opt-out option (if it really is feasible) sounds like it might be a good compromise.


I'm both curious and concerned about this one. I hope for Keenspot's sake that they can really pull the programming of this off, and if anyone can, it's our guys Gav and Nate. But it feels odd asking readers to opt out of an advertisement manually. Maybe it's just because I've always prefered an opt-in mentality as opposed to an opt-out one. But I know that no matter how much I forewarn everyone on the site and beg and plead for cooperation, I'm still going to be flooded with hate mail because of it. Not by you guys here on the boards, of course, but by those stubborn ones who only read the strip and don't care for much else on the site, and certainly don't read the news items. Maybe this is selfish reasoning, but I live through this every time a new pop-up ad slips through our defenses and gets shown on GPF unintended. I have plastered the news page numerous times about it and now even have a permanent item in the FAQ, but there's always someone who never reads anything but the front page of the newspaper. I don't have enough time for e-mail in my day as it is. Sigh...

Oh, and not to sound like a total selfish idiot, I don't think you guys should have to opt-out of anything. Because I care about you. I really do. Really, really do. (Yeah, that'll do it. They'll buy that.)
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Postby showler on Wed Sep 11, 2002 2:17 pm

jtdarlington wrote:Well, we all already knew you were a weirdo, showler... :wink:


:D

jtdarlington wrote:While I think it's admirable that you'd want to continue to get ads while still paying the subscription, I don't think you should. Really, you're getting what you paid for: surfing the site without ads.....No need paying for the same thing twice, in my opinion.


Actually, I paid for the exclusive content...the removal of the ads was a non-issue for me. Granted, you guys took longer than I expected to get some PREMIUM content and features going, but I'm okay with that.

As for paying for the same thing twice....I view it as a cost/benefit thing. Viewing the ads costs me almost nothing (negligible annoyance and/or speed), but is potentially of benefit to you (with the number of strips I read, and the amount of time spent in Forums, that's a lot of adviews). I can't afford to give tips at the moment so I might as well help as I can.
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Postby Bo Lindbergh on Wed Sep 11, 2002 4:21 pm

No vote from me. I visited that site and could find nothing but blank pages where the samples were supposed to be, so it seems I'm safe from them. :)
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Postby showler on Wed Sep 11, 2002 4:44 pm

jtdarlington wrote:Now, if this were an ad for BattleBots we were talking about...


Sadly, that now seems unlikely.

Slashdot: Comedy Central Cancels BattleBots
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Postby sillyname99 on Wed Sep 11, 2002 4:50 pm

Just out of curiosity, why don't work surfers keep their sound muted? I hate uninvited sounds, so only turn on sound when I particularly want something. Or you can leave a pair of headphones plugged in; it keeps the noise down.

I share Showler's opinion on ads. With high speed internet, I don't mind any ad that isn't animated. The animated and flashing ones get scrolled up on any site I visit. The no-ad thing isn't the draw to Premium for me, the content is. And, as I've discussed elsewhere, the debate there is supporting Jeff vs Keenspot, since GPF is the only Keepspot comic I read.

I actually tried to post the following a couple days ago but crashed my browser, so the quick recap: Initially, my thought on the new ads was go for it. Then I tried the link, and it resized the window to almost full screen. That brought my opinion down to tolerate. And only for the big bucks. If they tried to reduce the rate, forget it.
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question

Postby kormoc on Wed Sep 11, 2002 9:27 pm

I browse with javascript off, javavm off, flash off, sounds off, popups off, etc. If you have a flash ad, and I can't see if, does it still count for you?
All the ads on Eyeblaster(what a name!) don't load for me. Also, for such a high rate of views, going with 12000 daily readers, that's 12*20 or $240 a day. That's a lot of cash for banner ads. I would go for it, if only just to get cc's money. They killed battlebots...
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Postby T'Renn on Wed Sep 11, 2002 11:05 pm

"Oh my god! They killed Battlebots!!!"

"You bastards!!!"

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Postby T'Renn on Wed Sep 11, 2002 11:17 pm

Seriously, though, I don't have much problem with the ads. If Comedy Central will throw that much money at Keenspot, take it. I'll even let the ad load before I kill it, just to make sure they count it. :D

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