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No ads? No ads!

February 10, 2011

Yesterday, I was quite shocked by something I found on the Internet. A blog. My own blog, actually. It. Had. Ads. On. It. Yes, ads. Advertisements, for crying out loud!

When surfing the interwebs, I normally use Firefox with Adblock. This does, of course, make web surfing a nicer experience. However, as I found out yesterday, it does have some drawbacks as well. Using Adblock means I don’t see as many ads as other people do. This might lead me to believe that many websites are ad free, when in fact, they are crawling with the nasty little parasites.

A turn for the worse

I have always thought that my blog was perfectly ad free. I guess you can imagine my horror when I found out that it was not. Due to Tweetdeck and Firefox not getting along, I happened to view this blog in a non-Adblocking version of Safari for the first time yesterday. I was rereading an old post, when I was attacked by a flashing colorful atrocity lurking at the bottom. An ad! On my blog!

Naive as I am,  I have always believed that WordPress blogs were ad free, or at least that advertising was an opt in-feature. Seeing with my own eyes that this was not so led me to check with the support pages. It turns out I was partially right, but am now wrong. When I migrated to WordPress in May 2006, it was indeed ad free. However, that soon changed for the worse. In September that very year, Matt Mullenweg wrote on the WordPress blog:

“Since the ad test about 6 weeks ago there have been ads. Where? We very occasionally show Adsense (contextual text ads) on post and tag pages.”

According to the support pages, the ads are discrete, and

“The ad code tries very hard to not intrude or show ads to logged-in readers, which means only a very small percentage of your page views will actually contain ads.”

Discrete? What I found on my blog couldn’t possibly be described as discrete, and, yes, it does intrude. It is, of course, mainly my own fault that I did not find out about WordPress’ decision to open our blogs to advertising. However, it is a decision I strongly dislike, and a policy I deeply wish and hope that they will abandon. Until then, however, I have no choice but to fork out the $ 29.97 for the No Ads upgrade.

This blog, at least (and at last) shall be ad free!

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