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Please whitelist ZAM ads?Follow

#1 Dec 09 2010 at 8:42 PM Rating: Decent
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Seriously? Please make basic features like polling accessible without premium and I'll consider tolerating your eyesores and exposing myself to potential spyware. Meanwhile, you have time for a feature that replaces the Adblock/NS display with what is essentially an ad of your own, so maybe you should instead have developed a feature that justifies paid premium.

I'm not upset or anything. I just lol'd really hard at the audacity.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#2 Dec 09 2010 at 8:48 PM Rating: Good
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Kachi wrote:
Meanwhile, you have time for a feature that replaces the Adblock/NS display with what is essentially an ad of your own, so maybe you should instead have developed a feature that justifies paid premium.
Why not? It seems like a great idea to me. The only reason to use adblock is because of the risk of viruses. Using the internet without adblock is one of the dumbest things that you could do, other than using limewire to look for CP. Zam hosting ads on their server not only prevents adblock from working, therefore increasing revenue, it also removes the need for it, as there's no risk of viruses. It seems like a perfect solution with no real downside for anyone.

As for polls, you can always always post the code, and there will always be someone who will quote it for you.

Also, from a pm i got from micajah:
Micajah wrote:
We've been looking at a lot of the premium features that we use for the forums and are considering making some of them free to everyone


He mentioned custom titles, so i know they're at least considering those, but other than that, he didn't say what specifically they were thinking of giving to free users. Either way, they are considering some premium features being given to everyone.

Edited, Dec 9th 2010 9:51pm by ThePsychoticOne
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#3 Dec 09 2010 at 10:07 PM Rating: Good
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You're being awful helpful Rog. It's suspicious!

In any event, eh, what's the problem? It's their site, they do apparently generate most of their income off ads, and if they want to remind you of this fact when you're using adblock than I say they're well within their rights.
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#4 Dec 09 2010 at 10:11 PM Rating: Good
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Erecia wrote:
You're being awful helpful Rog. It's suspicious!
This is exactly what i'm talking about in the post i'm about to make. Even when there isn't something wrong with my posts, someone still just has to take a jab at me. Smiley: glare
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#5 Dec 09 2010 at 10:42 PM Rating: Good
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Maybe you're just getting sensitive about it.
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#6 Dec 09 2010 at 10:50 PM Rating: Excellent
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Grand Master Leatherworker ThePsychoticO wrote:
Why not? It seems like a great idea to me. The only reason to use adblock is because of the risk of viruses.

That and a simple desire not to look at the ads.

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Zam hosting ads on their server not only prevents adblock from working, therefore increasing revenue, it also removes the need for it, as there's no risk of viruses.

I don't think they're hosting ads, just a placeholder begging you to stop AdBlocking them that you see when the ads don't go through.

I AdBlocked it :D
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#7 Dec 09 2010 at 10:58 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
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Zam hosting ads on their server not only prevents adblock from working, therefore increasing revenue, it also removes the need for it, as there's no risk of viruses.
I don't think they're hosting ads, just a placeholder begging you to stop AdBlocking them that you see when the ads don't go through.

I AdBlocked it :D
Ahhh, didn't know about that. I thought he was talking about the ads on the home pages.

Still, i can't imagine why anyone would complain about that. Either unblock zam, or block the image, and it's not a problem.
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#8 Dec 10 2010 at 1:28 AM Rating: Decent
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It's not really a complaint, I just thought it was a little ridiculous.

"ZAM is supported primarily by advertisements. Please whitelist us so we can continue to build new features. :)
Sincerely,
The ZAM Team"

Ok, so you have time to develop features that beg for cash, but can't justify providing basic features for free, or build features that would make me want to pay for premium?

I chuckle in the face of it.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#9 Dec 10 2010 at 1:39 AM Rating: Good
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Kachi wrote:
Ok, so you have time to develop features that beg for cash
I doubt that took very long to do. And considering some of the bugs i've reported in my severel bugs thread, that have been fixed that no one would ever notice unless they were specifically looking for it, i'm not so sure they're really that short on time.
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but can't justify providing basic features for free, or build features that would make me want to pay for premium?
Post suggestions? They will read them, and if they like the idea, they just might add it. Alla has some really great devs here, but if they don't know what people want, they're going to spend their time going through the mountain of tiny unimportant bugs instead. And like i said, they are looking at the premium features and will (probably?) be giving some to free users. Maybe an admin can give more details about that.
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#10 Dec 10 2010 at 6:34 AM Rating: Decent
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I doubt that took very long to do.


I bet it took more time to do than something like adding new smilies for premium members.

Look, stuff like making polls, posting images, avatars, smilies... these are things that 99% of other major forums give you for free, and maybe if ZAM did, they would attract enough non-premium members to bring in the ad revenue they need. I don't know. But I do know that in all my years posting here, there has never been any question or confusion about how the users feel-- that at least some of those features should be standard. Hell, they only JUST RECENTLY allowed you to use the search function without a subscription. It's not a case of ignorance, or not enough people asking. And it takes virtually no effort to make a feature that's available for premium members available to nonpremium members. Give me the admin login, and I can probably do it within five minutes.

Personally, I don't mind in the least little bit. It's 1/500 posts that I miss any of those things. To some extent I even appreciate it. I just think it was a comical move, at best.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#11 Dec 10 2010 at 7:08 AM Rating: Excellent
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Maybe a comical move, but at least a comical move consistent with Alla's business plan. I don't understand why they do what they do, but they're committed to doing it. The level of administration we deal with don't have the authority to change things like that. I feel it's sort of like going to the police station and complaining that the capital raised taxes.
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#12 Dec 10 2010 at 8:23 AM Rating: Decent
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I'm well aware, and as I've already noted, probably four times by now, I'm not complaining.
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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#13 Dec 10 2010 at 8:47 AM Rating: Excellent
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Grand Master Leatherworker ThePsychoticO wrote:
Kachi wrote:
Ok, so you have time to develop features that beg for cash
I doubt that took very long to do. And considering some of the bugs i've reported in my severel bugs thread, that have been fixed that no one would ever notice unless they were specifically looking for it, i'm not so sure they're really that short on time.


It's more that the bugs are usually simple to fix and you explain clearly and concisely how to duplicate the problem. Knowing exactly how to duplicate them makes it tons easier to fix.

I put a high priority on fixing what we already have in place.
#14 Dec 10 2010 at 10:45 AM Rating: Good
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Kachi wrote:
But I do know that in all my years posting here


So you've been using the site for years, but haven't supported it by disabling AdBlock or buying $3 premium yet? How about @#%^ off?
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#15 Dec 10 2010 at 6:33 PM Rating: Decent
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So you've been using the site for years, but haven't supported it by disabling AdBlock or buying $3 premium yet? How about @#%^ off?


u mad

Not that I've always blocked ads anyway, but how about maybe I'll support it when it actually offers the basic features of a phpBB? It's open source for crying out loud.

When I used the XI boards, there was actually a useful database for a while, before it fell into negligence and disrepair, but it was eventually made obsolete by a wiki.

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Hyrist wrote:
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...

Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.

Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.
#16 Dec 10 2010 at 10:44 PM Rating: Good
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tl;dr - Replace the black banners with non-intrusive, non-animating, locally served advertisements. Most of those who block ads will likely respect them.

For what it's worth I understand advertising is a legitimate source of income and a natural trade off. I understand why and have no problem with zam reaching out to those like me who are blocking the ads. I'm glad this is being discussed. I would like to support zam with viewable ads.

So then, you might ask, why I block them? They're (1) often distracting eyesores (2) potentially contain malware (3) slow down site load times.

Ads are everywhere. They're ubiquitous. However... they're typically as intrusive as possible and that's where I get rubbed the wrong way. While the universal view in business is to sqeeze its consumers as hard as possible, I flat out refuse to accept it. Apparently I'm not alone. Teams of people write and maintain addons or web browsers to block ads. Individuals who are fed up seek these tools and take the time to learn them. That says a lot. Ads are too intrusive. Adblock plus is a natural result of long term abuse.

Some organizations understand this. They build non-intrusive advertising into their model. Google, a goliath of a business, is the obvious example. I have never once felt like I wanted to block an ad served through google. They make ridiculous money without squeezing their consumers. It seems to work well on smaller scales as well.

You might say it's tough to find an ad service with non-intrusive advertising which can be served locally and still provide a sufficient revenue stream. I wouldn't know. I do know I wouldn't block ads that had no animation and were served by zam.com. That solves my 3 complaints listed above.

You can try it both ways. Keep your current advertising for those who don't block ads, which is probably the majority of members. For the other still large group of members who do block ads, try an ad-service who will work with you and replace those black banners with locally served, non-intrusive advertising. If done right you might be surprised that members are ok with it.
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#17 Dec 11 2010 at 1:02 AM Rating: Good
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landael wrote:
You can try it both ways. Keep your current advertising for those who don't block ads, which is probably the majority of members. For the other still large group of members who do block ads, try an ad-service who will work with you and replace those black banners with locally served, non-intrusive advertising. If done right you might be surprised that members are ok with it.


This
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#18 Dec 11 2010 at 9:26 AM Rating: Excellent
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landael wrote:

So then, you might ask, why I block them? They're (1) often distracting eyesores (2) potentially contain malware (3) slow down site load times.


2) An up to date antivirus software program combined with a responsible site negates this risk to almost zero.

3) This point is wrong, as far as ZAM is concerned. This is the #1 reason we force our ads to load inside of iframes. The ad servers can be completely down and our pages will happily load without pause. If a site chooses not to load ads in iframes, you are right. They can slow down the page loads. Some choose not to be cause ads in iframes are a pain in the butt to implement properly.

We do try our very best to keep the intrusion at a minimum. If we really wanted to crank it up we would have interstials, dashboards every page load (the ads that come up from the bottom), popunders constantly and more ads than content on every page.

It's a very difficult balancing act for us. Gone are the days when someone can make a popular fan website for a game that is popular. They get crushed by their own success. It isn't a matter of it being a full time job for them or anything else. It's a simple matter of the cost of hosting the site. Just the bill we receive every month for the bandwidth alone is approaching 5 figures, for our entire network. Server costs are in addition to that.

We really do try our best to keep the ads to a minimum. Not a week goes by when we aren't working with our advertisers and sales staff to keep the user experience positive. We frequently pull ads that do not meet our standards, if they are remnant (come from a giant pool of ads) or direct sales. Flash ads that use far too much cpu, play sound without the user clicking on them, flashing ads, etc. all get pulled as soon as we find out about them.

Ironically, we can't run google's ads. We would need to hire someone full time just to keep blocking all the gold/gil/isk selling ads that would appear in them.

The purpose of the graphic which people who adblock ads see is not a different method for us to advertise. It is simply to educate and explain why we run ads and hopefully encourage people to whitelist our site(s).
#19 Dec 11 2010 at 10:32 AM Rating: Excellent
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landael wrote:
You can try it both ways. Keep your current advertising for those who don't block ads, which is probably the majority of members. For the other still large group of members who do block ads, try an ad-service who will work with you and replace those black banners with locally served, non-intrusive advertising. If done right you might be surprised that members are ok with it.


They would almost instantly end up in the common filter lists used by almost everyone who uses adblock. In fact, there are already rules in the most commonly used list that are specific to this site.
#20 Dec 11 2010 at 10:32 AM Rating: Good
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2) An up to date antivirus software program combined with a responsible site negates this risk to almost zero.

Just to play Devils Advocate, if that risk is even 1%, that's too much.
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#21 Dec 11 2010 at 10:42 AM Rating: Excellent
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I block ads because I find them visually annoying just as people tear the inserts out of their magazines before reading or skip past commercials on their DVRs. Even worse since the Powers That Be chose to reformat the layout of the site to facilitate pushing more ads and ignored the feedback saying that many people hated the new layout. So I canceled premium because user feedback wasn't listened to anyway and I was largely paying as a voluntary donation to the site and I block ads because the new layout shoves so much crap at me that I'd really rather not look at it all. I guess I get to spend an extra three bucks a month on dollar burgers as well.

Win/win for me and lose/lose for the site. But that's what the Powers That Be wanted and so that's what they got. I don't know that cutsie nag ads are a great substitution for a model that encourages, rather than discourages, premium subscriptions or one that doesn't actively encourage using AdBlock due to the crapton of ads shoved in your face.

Edited, Dec 11th 2010 10:48am by Jophiel
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#22 Dec 11 2010 at 10:50 AM Rating: Good
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landael wrote:
They're (1) often distracting eyesores (2) potentially contain malware (3) slow down site load times.


I feel the need to add point (4): many of them these days feel the need to talk at me. If I have to listen to one more woman yammer on about her dirty windows, I'm gunna scream.

I've never heard a talky add at Alla, but it's the places that go too far that ruin it for everyone with these kinds of things. Sort of like with pop-up windows. Man what a crappy concept THAT was.

I wonder if there's an advertisement theory that is based on an anti-reaction to current advertisement methods. Sort of like wikipedia's exceptionally tasteful personal appeal donation requests (which actually did entice me to toss $35 to a good cause.) I think by gaining people's trust and then NOT LATER ABSUING IT fundraising and other advertisement methods would be a lot more effective.

Edited, Dec 11th 2010 11:53am by Erecia
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#23 Dec 11 2010 at 12:27 PM Rating: Good
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Nizdaar wrote:
3) This point is wrong, as far as ZAM is concerned. This is the #1 reason we force our ads to load inside of iframes. The ad servers can be completely down and our pages will happily load without pause. If a site chooses not to load ads in iframes, you are right. They can slow down the page loads. Some choose not to be cause ads in iframes are a pain in the butt to implement properly.

It's good to hear the speed changed. Zam loading time was one the main reason I started using ad blocking ~5 years ago. I was constantly getting "waiting for some domain..." for 15 seconds each time I clicked a link. It drove me bonkers.

iframe's are notorious as a source for malware. The ad industry has a bad reputation for allowing malware and it's deserved for half-assing prevention. If all that was served was .jpg I could live with that. If site load times weren't an issue, the ads weren't animated, and my antivirus caught the rare jpg exploit I'd follow instructions for reconfiguring adblock.

Antivirus can only catch suspicious behavior or previously known malware. I'm not interested in opening myself up to any ad service using flash because flash is exploited regularly and it could be a couple days before even the most premium antivirus has patched for it.
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#24 Dec 11 2010 at 10:30 PM Rating: Excellent
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Erecia wrote:
I feel the need to add point (4): many of them these days feel the need to talk at me. If I have to listen to one more woman yammer on about her dirty windows, I'm gunna scream.

I've never heard a talky add at Alla, but it's the places that go too far that ruin it for everyone with these kinds of things. Sort of like with pop-up windows. Man what a crappy concept THAT was.

Edited, Dec 11th 2010 11:53am by Erecia


If you ever find an ad on any of our sites which loads and plays sound without any user interaction, report it and we will remove it immediately.
#25 Dec 13 2010 at 3:37 AM Rating: Decent
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landael wrote:
tl;dr - Replace the black banners with non-intrusive, non-animating, locally served advertisements. Most of those who block ads will likely respect them.

Why does local serving help?

Given this situation, no ad server is to be trusted because their business model relies on untrustworthy sources:

https://threatpost.com/en_us/blogs/major-ad-networks-found-serving-malicious-ads-121210
#26 Dec 13 2010 at 11:32 AM Rating: Good
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landael wrote:

tl;dr - Replace the black banners with non-intrusive, non-animating, locally served advertisements. Most of those who block ads will likely respect them.


The reason that I block the ads is because despite what I have read from some of the admins in this thread - they DO slow the site to a crawl. If I accidentally come here after using IE for something work-related, I immediately know it because the scrolling is slow and typing a post is like nails on a chalkboard. I just can't do it - and here at work I have a decently fast pipe.

I find it funny that after ad-blocking the little quip that Zam created, the rating buttons also disappeared. I'm going to leave it that way because I always felt the karma system was mostly a joke anyway so it doesn't matter one way or the other - but this did not in any way encourage me to buy premium nor turn adblock back off. It was cute and silly, but it's just getting exasperating with this site and I am in agreement that you can do much more on other sites without this "in-your-face" approach to get money.

I can't sit here for ten minutes per post because ads are slowing everything down, no matter how much I enjoy the community and admins on this forum.
#27 Dec 13 2010 at 12:15 PM Rating: Excellent
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Torrence wrote:
landael wrote:

tl;dr - Replace the black banners with non-intrusive, non-animating, locally served advertisements. Most of those who block ads will likely respect them.


The reason that I block the ads is because despite what I have read from some of the admins in this thread - they DO slow the site to a crawl. If I accidentally come here after using IE for something work-related, I immediately know it because the scrolling is slow and typing a post is like nails on a chalkboard. I just can't do it - and here at work I have a decently fast pipe.

I find it funny that after ad-blocking the little quip that Zam created, the rating buttons also disappeared. I'm going to leave it that way because I always felt the karma system was mostly a joke anyway so it doesn't matter one way or the other - but this did not in any way encourage me to buy premium nor turn adblock back off. It was cute and silly, but it's just getting exasperating with this site and I am in agreement that you can do much more on other sites without this "in-your-face" approach to get money.

I can't sit here for ten minutes per post because ads are slowing everything down, no matter how much I enjoy the community and admins on this forum.


Rating posts on the feedback forum was disabled. Every other forum still has them. You can see this thread for details.

What you are describing with the ads has nothing to do with load time. It has to do with an ad using too much CPU, or, possibly something wrong with your computer.

If it is the ad, please read the ad feedback thread and send me a screenshot so that we can determine if the ad really is too resource intensive.
#28 Dec 13 2010 at 2:30 PM Rating: Good
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I don't disbelieve you, but I wasn't in the feedback forum when I noticed it. In fact, that's what prompted me to come here at all - to see if anyone else had done what I did and had the same effect.

Still, it's possible that one of the XIV admins just got sick of me at that precise moment and norated me :)

Like I said - I'm not really worried about it. I found it more amusing than anything. If I happen to come across another ad like that when I accidentally use IE I'll send you a screenshot.

EDIT: I see what's going on now. The arrows themselves are still there, just looks like the graphics for them are in the same place as the Zam ad I manually blocked. Cool. Well I am still leaving it as is. I might look into a premium at some point. I might as well do my part to keep my favorite admins in a job and there's just no way I'm subjecting myself to potential blindness and lag with some of these horrific ads.

Edited, Dec 13th 2010 3:37pm by Torrence
#29 Dec 13 2010 at 7:24 PM Rating: Decent
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in my opinion an ad should be nothing more than a clickable graphic and if that was the case there would be no resource intensive ads. If something is so resource intensive that it is slowing down your pc then there is issues, and the ad is doing more then just showing an ad.

And the fact that the site relies on someone reporting to an admin to then take notice to take the ad out after searching it down after enough people report just the right info with screen shots and times and locations and gps coordinates of their mouse cursor at exact system times in their timezone.... is not a solution.

How about a "report bad ad" button that does it all automatically, and have the ad immediately blocked as soon as a single report is done, and even that will be to slow as it still took 1 person to be effected by what ever malicious content that provider was pushing because the ads were not fully checked.

How about an automated script server side that tests the ad for sound. Load the ad and if there is sound on the sound card then kick the ad, or load the ad and if the thread consumes x amount of processor power then also kick the ad. There are several tests that could be automated but even then its not enough as there are ways around the tests and there will always be at least 1 person effected by a malicious ad and even 1 person is too many.

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#30 Dec 13 2010 at 9:10 PM Rating: Excellent
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I don't understand how anyone can have a problem with Zam asking politely to make the income that allows this free site to run.

If you don't want to see ads, then don't see ads. It would be a nice gesture to support a site that provides free forums and databases with paid moderators and coders, but no one's making you look at ads. If the sum total inconvenience of using Zam's free online resources is enduring a polite and innocuous request, which you can ignore, then I have trouble imagining why anyone has a problem with it.

I run ad-block because ads are annoying. But, that's me being selfish, taking a free service and not supporting it because I just plain don't feel like it. But, I'm sure as hell not offended or annoyed by a simple polite request to effortlessly pay for stuff I use for free.
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I'm not upset or anything. I just lol'd really hard at the audacity.

I know you keep repeating that you're not. But, it sure seems like you're upset. If you're not offended by
"the audacity," then why even start this thread? "I note this thing but am indifferent to it" is hardly a reason to start a thread.

*edit* Quite right, corrected.

Edited, Dec 15th 2010 3:46pm by Caesura
#31 Dec 14 2010 at 12:07 AM Rating: Excellent
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Caesura wrote:
I don't understand how anyone can have a problem with Alla asking politely to make the income that allows this free site to run.

Alla hasn't been part of the site for around a year now.
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#32 Dec 14 2010 at 8:18 AM Rating: Excellent
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shibaaa wrote:
in my opinion an ad should be nothing more than a clickable graphic and if that was the case there would be no resource intensive ads. If something is so resource intensive that it is slowing down your pc then there is issues, and the ad is doing more then just showing an ad.

And the fact that the site relies on someone reporting to an admin to then take notice to take the ad out after searching it down after enough people report just the right info with screen shots and times and locations and gps coordinates of their mouse cursor at exact system times in their timezone.... is not a solution.


We don't rely on users only. Several weeks ago we discovered on our own an ad that was using a ton of CPU and we had it pulled. It was a flash ad where the designer (from the ad agency, not us) felt the need to program in effects rather than render them. It didn't require a user to tell us this was a problem. Our sales team now knows to look out for this sort of thing better.

If Flash would just die, the internet would be a better place for it.

We've been discussing a report ad button. No, it will not have the functionality to automatically pull an ad. That'd be abused to ragnarok and back even if it wasn't technically not feasible to do.
#33 Dec 16 2010 at 2:22 PM Rating: Good
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To put it bluntly, begging for users to whitelist your site is offensive.

We block advertisements and other crap because we don't want to see it. You should not be coding your way around that to force unwanted messages onto your users. It's simply rude.

Now stop it.
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I think RDM's neurotic omniscience is sooooooo worth including in any alliance.
#34 Dec 16 2010 at 7:04 PM Rating: Excellent
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To put it bluntly, asking a site to give up their main revenue model because you don't like looking at ads is retarded. You receive this service for free; ads are only a mild inconvenience to you, especially since Zam tries hard to make them discreet. What's "rude" is using up their bandwidth without contributing in the slightest, and expecting them to somehow not mind that you're wasting their money.
#35 Dec 16 2010 at 9:41 PM Rating: Good
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cidbahamut wrote:
To put it bluntly, begging for users to whitelist your site is offensive.

We block advertisements and other crap because we don't want to see it. You should not be coding your way around that to force unwanted messages onto your users. It's simply rude.

Now stop it.


That is probably the single most idiotic comment I've ever seen in this forum.

Granted, I don't come here often, but damn. If the cake wasn't a lie, that would definitely have taken it.
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#36 Dec 17 2010 at 1:38 AM Rating: Good
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cidbahamut wrote:
To put it bluntly, begging for users to whitelist your site is offensive.
Offensive is quite a strong word to use. Emotionally charged, too. Suggests to me that you only find it offensive because you're feeling guilty. Or are exactly the kind of self entitled person the internet is so filled with these days.

cidbahamut wrote:
We block advertisements and other crap because we don't want to see it. You should not be coding your way around that to force unwanted messages onto your users. It's simply rude.
It's their site. You're reaping the fruits of their efforts at absolutely no cost to you. Putting up with a simple image asking you to whitelist their advertisements so your traffic and usage of their bandwidth will have a benefit to them as well is a small price to pay. It is in no way rude, and they're not forcing you to actually whitelist them in order to enjoy their content.

Hell, they would be well within their rights to find a way to force you to whitelist the ads to enjoy their content, but that would be silly of them to actually do.

That said, I don't disagree with others who have mentioned different, less system intensive(and possibly less malware risky, since removing offending ads after the fact is a good, but not perfect, method?) advertising methods.
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#37 Dec 17 2010 at 1:42 AM Rating: Decent
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The One and Only Poldaran wrote:
You're reaping the fruits of their efforts at absolutely no cost to you.
To be fair, that's not 100% true (or maybe it is for him specifically, but it's not generally true). If someone is contributing to the forums/databases/etc and helping to improve the site, they are helping to increase traffic, which will result in more revenue. Even if someone isn't directly contributing financially, they may be indirectly by donating their time.

Completely agree with the rest of your post though.
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#38 Dec 17 2010 at 2:47 AM Rating: Good
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Grand Master Leatherworker ThePsychoticO wrote:
The One and Only Poldaran wrote:
You're reaping the fruits of their efforts at absolutely no cost to you.
To be fair, that's not 100% true (or maybe it is for him specifically, but it's not generally true). If someone is contributing to the forums/databases/etc and helping to improve the site, they are helping to increase traffic, which will result in more revenue. Even if someone isn't directly contributing financially, they may be indirectly by donating their time.
I specifically meant monetary cost, though you do have a point that he may be contributing, though I find that unlikely, considering.
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Someone on another forum wrote:
Wow, you've got an awesome writing style.! I really dig the narrator's back story, humor, sarcasm, and the plethora of pop culture references. Altogether a refreshingly different RotR journal (not that I don't like the more traditional ones, mind you).

#39 Dec 17 2010 at 7:11 AM Rating: Decent
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I found it easier to blacklist a certain image then whitelist ZAM ads... I'll just stick with using my bubbly personality to give people a reason to visit ZAM.com :D
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#40 Dec 17 2010 at 8:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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The One and Only Poldaran wrote:
It's their site. You're reaping the fruits of their efforts at absolutely no cost to you. Putting up with a simple image asking you to whitelist their advertisements so your traffic and usage of their bandwidth will have a benefit to them as well is a small price to pay.

Once upon a time, this site existed out of some labor of love but those days are long past. This site exists to make money and only to make money. It wasn't purchased by a bunch of investors because the people at Goldman Sachs or Oak Investment Partners really like Final Fantasy, it was bought because they intend to generate a profit. Not that the rank and file staff here doesn't care about these things but the people with the purse strings couldn't give a rat's ass about MMORPGs except for how it makes them more money.

It's like television. The network doesn't put on shows to make you happy, they do it to attract viewers who will see their ads and thus allow the network to make money by selling ad space. Your simple presence here is your initial "cost" to see the site, bolster the traffic numbers and make the site more attractive to advertisers. As for seeing the ads themselves, internet sites are in the same quandary as television -- how to make you look at ads without blocking them (or skipping them on your DVR)? Frankly, that's their issue to solve but apparently "guilt" works for some folks.
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Wow. Regular ol' Joph fan club in here.
#41 Dec 17 2010 at 11:09 AM Rating: Good
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Joph, I'll be the first to hand you a pitchfork if the day comes, and I know that the owners, or previous owners, of the parent company did some questionable things back in Allakhazam's time, but if we stopped supporting the site altogether, it would just get shut down and then where would we be?

It's the lesser of two evils.

Now, if they continue to not acknowledge user feedback and such, I'll hand you that pitchfork and go torch some sh*t. Until then, however, I'll support it.

Oh, and this isn't meant as a threat to anyone, or a stab at the moderators here. You guys take orders from higher up and I understand that. In other words, please don't ban me.
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#42 Dec 17 2010 at 11:25 AM Rating: Excellent
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Mazra wrote:
Now, if they continue to not acknowledge user feedback and such, I'll hand you that pitchfork and go torch some sh*t. Until then, however, I'll support it.

Oh, and this isn't meant as a threat to anyone, or a stab at the moderators here. You guys take orders from higher up and I understand that. In other words, please don't ban me.


RE Feedback: I actually have some plans to have a bit of a focus group test with a small collection of the more active posters very soon. We've gotten to the point where it's gotten difficult to just do open feedback discussions on the forums, because there are so many different types of users for so many different types of games, along with new users trying to fit in with the old users.

So, rather than simply have any thread I create devolve into some sort of mass rage fest, I'm going to pull a few of you out and simply get your thoughts on things that we're working on.

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:26am by Micajah

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:27am by Micajah
#43 Dec 17 2010 at 11:51 AM Rating: Excellent
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Mazra wrote:
Joph, I'll be the first to hand you a pitchfork if the day comes, and I know that the owners, or previous owners, of the parent company did some questionable things back in Allakhazam's time, but if we stopped supporting the site altogether, it would just get shut down and then where would we be?

I'm not looking for a pitchfork and I don't usually sit around bitching about the site, much less trying to tear it down. But I don't subscribe to any warm fuzzy notions about the motives of the Powers That Be either. I spent seven or eight years supporting the site even during periods where I wasn't playing the games as a voluntary "donation" to Alla as an individual. These days, the Powers That Be have drawn a much sharper line between business/consumer and so my consumer cooperation/dollars are something for the business to earn. Either they develop a successful plan to get those dollars from the consumers or they don't.

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:53am by Jophiel
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Wow. Regular ol' Joph fan club in here.
#44 Dec 17 2010 at 12:19 PM Rating: Decent
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Micajah wrote:
Mazra wrote:
Now, if they continue to not acknowledge user feedback and such, I'll hand you that pitchfork and go torch some sh*t. Until then, however, I'll support it.

Oh, and this isn't meant as a threat to anyone, or a stab at the moderators here. You guys take orders from higher up and I understand that. In other words, please don't ban me.


RE Feedback: I actually have some plans to have a bit of a focus group test with a small collection of the more active posters very soon. We've gotten to the point where it's gotten difficult to just do open feedback discussions on the forums, because there are so many different types of users for so many different types of games, along with new users trying to fit in with the old users.

So, rather than simply have any thread I create devolve into some sort of mass rage fest, I'm going to pull a few of you out and simply get your thoughts on things that we're working on.

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:26am by Micajah

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:27am by Micajah
Oh, that should be fun.
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#45 Dec 17 2010 at 12:32 PM Rating: Excellent
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Grand Master Leatherworker ThePsychoticO wrote:
Micajah wrote:
Mazra wrote:
Now, if they continue to not acknowledge user feedback and such, I'll hand you that pitchfork and go torch some sh*t. Until then, however, I'll support it.

Oh, and this isn't meant as a threat to anyone, or a stab at the moderators here. You guys take orders from higher up and I understand that. In other words, please don't ban me.


RE Feedback: I actually have some plans to have a bit of a focus group test with a small collection of the more active posters very soon. We've gotten to the point where it's gotten difficult to just do open feedback discussions on the forums, because there are so many different types of users for so many different types of games, along with new users trying to fit in with the old users.

So, rather than simply have any thread I create devolve into some sort of mass rage fest, I'm going to pull a few of you out and simply get your thoughts on things that we're working on.

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:26am by Micajah

Edited, Dec 17th 2010 11:27am by Micajah
Oh, that should be fun.


I hope so. Smiley: cool
#46 Dec 17 2010 at 4:33 PM Rating: Decent
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We had this same discussion in =10 when the rule about not talking about ad block was brought up. While haveing no ads for the users is greatthis site has to make money. This is one of a few sites that even police their ads to a great extent. =10 eventually settled on having Zam mention to whitelist would be the best result for all.

Ive been on this site for 7 years now and have never seen an infect anyone with anything, though there have been an occasional bad ad. Really is that hard to just ignire a box saying please whitelist? Sometimes people are to paranoid about there surfing habits.
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#47 Dec 18 2010 at 5:24 PM Rating: Decent
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Nizdaar wrote:
2) An up to date antivirus software program combined with a responsible site negates this risk to almost zero.
Holy crap did I laugh my ass off over this one... That's the biggest load of crap I've ever seen. I worked in a call center where we charged people exorbitant amounts of money to remove viruses and spyware that were normally generated in one of three ways: Downloading stuff you shouldn't, porn, and ad-laden websites. And most of them had a fully working, fully updated anti-virus program.

Nizdaar wrote:
We do try our very best to keep the intrusion at a minimum. If we really wanted to crank it up we would have interstials, dashboards every page load (the ads that come up from the bottom), popunders constantly and more ads than content on every page.
Acutally, there were times in the past where there were interstials and pop-unders from this site. I can't thank you enough for getting rid of them. However, I have to agree with Jophiel:

Jophiel wrote:
Even worse since the Powers That Be chose to reformat the layout of the site to facilitate pushing more ads and ignored the feedback saying that many people hated the new layout.
[...]
I was largely paying as a voluntary donation to the site
[...]
Win/win for me and lose/lose for the site. But that's what the Powers That Be wanted and so that's what they got.
I have been debating letting my premium status lapse and not renewing this time. It'll be sad to see my lovely inline pictures go away, but since Alla has chosen to listen less and less to their posters about the visual changes they are making to the site, and more and more to the "Powers That Be", I just don't know why I'm donating anymore. 3 bucks a month is really nothing, and while I appreciate some of the things we get (another thread for that), I can't see donating to a company that doesn't listen to its users.

Nizdaar wrote:
If Flash would just die, the internet would be a better place for it.
More like "If every wannabe Flash guru that doesn't know how to code/draw in Flash properly, and causes Flash to widely be seen as bloated crap would just die...

Micajah wrote:
RE Feedback: I actually have some plans to have a bit of a focus group test with a small collection of the more active posters very soon. We've gotten to the point where it's gotten difficult to just do open feedback discussions on the forums, because there are so many different types of users for so many different types of games, along with new users trying to fit in with the old users.

So, rather than simply have any thread I create devolve into some sort of mass rage fest, I'm going to pull a few of you out and simply get your thoughts on things that we're working on.
I'd be really curious who you choose. I mean, selecting people could lead the site down directions the populous at large don't want to see. I can see making an advisory committee of some of the long-time members here, but then the newbies would just cry that some "clique" is running the forums...

Honestly, for all the crap that comes from the open suggestion threads, there are some good opinions in them as well.

Alobont wrote:
Ive been on this site for 7 years now and have never seen an infect anyone with anything, though there have been an occasional bad ad.
You missed the issue that Alla had a few years back. I can't remember when, but it was long ago enough that I think Pikko was still posting news updates consisting solely of items added. The ad infected a few hundred thousand users. It was an ad that the company Alla used at the time had checked, but they were hit with the traditional outsourced bait and switch, a common practice. Basically, Scummy Ads Inc. submits version 1 of the ad, and ensures that the agreement they sign with Ad Pusher Inc. says that they get to remote-host the ad. Ad Pusher scans the ad, green-lights it, then after a rotation or two, Scummy Ads Inc. swaps in for an ad that has the same size as the green-lit ad, but has an added surprise inside, or features a new script that runs from the remote location.

So much fun, playing Russian roulette with ads, hence why I don't.
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#48 Dec 18 2010 at 10:08 PM Rating: Decent
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I'd be really curious who you choose. I mean, selecting people could lead the site down directions the populous at large don't want to see. I can see making an advisory committee of some of the long-time members here, but then the newbies would just cry that some "clique" is running the forums...

Honestly, for all the crap that comes from the open suggestion threads, there are some good opinions in them as well.
I've expressed the same concerns with him in PMs. I know it's a lot of work going through the bullsh*t, but it does give the newer posters a a chance to voice their opinions, as well as the midrange posters. And so what if it's a pain in the ass? I'm no business expert, but i'm pretty sure making your customers happy is the best way to make money, especially when you give 90% of your service away for free, and rely on what is essentially a donation to really make money.

I think the focus group is an excellent idea, and i'm definitely looking forward to participating, but i don't think you should just leave it at that. First of all, you said you just want to get more active posters, which is definitely a mistake. I understand selecting a brand new poster isn't really feasible, and even if you did, they likely would not be as productive as others, but getting a bunch of people with the same perspective won't be very productive either. Second, don't forget that unless you actually invite one along, you won't get much of an idea what they want. Just because a bunch of people that have been here for years all like an idea doesn't mean the guys who have been here for a months, or even just a few weeks will. To find that out, i still think the best way is to just make a thread and ask for ideas. Tell them you really want to hear from the newer posters. You could maybe even have a contest or something offering free premium for a month to the 10 or so people who offer the the most insightful comments, and only allow people who have been here under a year to qualify. Or something to just get feedback from a group of users that is much less likely to speak up otherwise. I dunno, i'm just throwing out ideas here. I think it's great that you're actively looking for feedback about the site, however i think it's important that you try to hear what everyone says, and not just those of us that have been around a while, and have already shown we want to help improve things.

Sorry for the rambling, hopefully you get something useful out of this~
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#49 Dec 19 2010 at 8:17 PM Rating: Excellent
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Pawkeshup Quick Hands wrote:
Nizdaar wrote:
2) An up to date antivirus software program combined with a responsible site negates this risk to almost zero.
Holy crap did I laugh my ass off over this one... That's the biggest load of crap I've ever seen. I worked in a call center where we charged people exorbitant amounts of money to remove viruses and spyware that were normally generated in one of three ways: Downloading stuff you shouldn't, porn, and ad-laden websites. And most of them had a fully working, fully updated anti-virus program.


I wouldn't call downloading something you should, viewing porn (and by porn, I mean those free with 10 forwards each with 20 ads... you know the ones, not penthouse or playboy) or ad-laden websites as a responsible site. No, I wouldn't call us ad-laden.

Pawkeshup Quick Hands wrote:

Nizdaar wrote:
We do try our very best to keep the intrusion at a minimum. If we really wanted to crank it up we would have interstials, dashboards every page load (the ads that come up from the bottom), popunders constantly and more ads than content on every page.
Acutally, there were times in the past where there were interstials and pop-unders from this site. I can't thank you enough for getting rid of them.


When did we have interstitials? I've been responsible for all the ad coding for ZAM for almost 6 years now. I have never been asked to implement them.
#50 Dec 20 2010 at 1:48 AM Rating: Decent
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Nizdaar wrote:
I wouldn't call downloading something you should, viewing porn (and by porn, I mean those free with 10 forwards each with 20 ads... you know the ones, not penthouse or playboy)

You've obviously researched the subject in depth. :D
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