Last week we dissected the ad-free blog initiative, bothered by its superior attitude and precious little vegan owl graphic, not to mention their stance being antithetical to our entire mission statement (if there's no ads, there's nothing to niptuck). Now capitalism strikes back with Pro-Ad Blog! By posting the happy little ad-bunny you declare, “1. That I am not opposed to the use of advertising on blogs. 2. That I believe making profits from my blog motivates me to write better posts every day. 3. That I also have no problem with people who choose not to display advertising on their blogs. 4. That I am responsible for the advertising on my blog." Word. Over at Stay Free! Eliot took issue with my statement that the author links on the bottom of the Ad-Free site undermine their thesis. Eliot said, "There's an immense difference between an advertisement and a credit. For instance, there's a link to my typekey profile in the signature to this comment -- that's a signature, not an ad. Are you arguing that websites shouldn't disclose their own authors?" I retorted,”Websites that are all about being anti-advertising on blogs needn't provide such a fluid means for driving traffic to its author's blogs. I disagree that the difference between a credit [and] an advertisement is as immense as you say. A classic advertising tactic is to write, in a completely non-salesy way, a white paper or treatise on an industry event phenomenon or reveal strategies that can help other businesses. The sponsoring company doesn't put their website or street address or phone number in the material, simply their company name discreetly in the bottom corner. This piece of communication is just as much an ad as a Burger King commercial." There's been no response to this comment in three days after a steady back and forth... perhaps they're roosting? via.
UPDATE: An apparently different eliot responded today, "That's a bit nuts. There absolutely is a huge difference between
"[that] piece of communication" and "a Burger King commercial."
Attribution is not an advertisement for yourself - it's a way for
readers to know who you are. Should people wear burquas in public to
increase anonymity there too?
Maybe fascist liberals really do exist..."
Which provoked me to reply, "How does attribution not advertise the authors? Please parse the
difference. Let's not confuse [connotative] and denotative definitions,
especially if for you, personally, advertising has a negative
connotation. The American Heritage Dictionary defines advertising as 1. To make public announcement of, especially to proclaim the qualities
or advantages of (a product or business) so as to increase sales. See
Synonyms at announce.
2. To make known; call attention to: advertised my intention to resign.
3. To warn or notify: “This event advertises me that there is such a fact as death” (Henry David Thoreau).
Nowhere do I see the distinction you claim. Please illuminate the matter.
You say, “Attribution is not an advertisement for yourself - it's a way for readers to know who you are.” That may be your *purpose* in using attribution, but *functionally* it also serves as an advertisement.
Furthermore, your "mandatory burqua wearing" analogy doesn't work. People, in the general sense, randomly walking around in public, have little to nothing to do with advertising, authorship, full disclosure, or attribution. I'm not advocating ubiquitous anonymity! Transparency is fantastic *except* when you make a site that says ads on blogs are bad and the hyperlinked attribution at the bottom functions as an ad. I have nothing against ad-free blogs, people can make blogs however they want, that’s what’s great about ‘em. Simply put, it would better serve Kerri and Jeff’s message to communicate their campaign anonymously. (snip)
I understand the concern about corporate dollars swaying the keystrokes of lily-livered bloggers as utopianhell worries about. For an example of blog advertising right, watch the Rocketboom kids. (snip)
I genuinely like your "fascist liberal" line. I'd like to make it into a t-shirt and/or a graphitti stencil. Would you like me to include a URL to your blog on it?"
Okay, this conversation is growing asinine and is hurtling towards zero-sum game territory so this shall be the last unless a real stunner emerges.