On Not | Mo Chit

July 05, 2004

RSS Advertisements RSS advertisements are on the horizon, and there's no stopping it. The people in Weblogs Inc. are very excited at the prospect of including ads in their feeds because it's the easy way out for generating revenue ( ). They claim it won't affect the over all experience, but let's be honest, when your only revenue model is advertising, it pits you against your readers/ users / people who give you the time of day.

Basically, if you don't know how to make money off of your product or just feeling lazy, then make whatever you offer a vehicle for advertisements.

I'm not saying that all advertising is bad, but too much advertising dilutes the overall effectiveness of advertising in general. For example, I get up in the morning and I open up my email, there's the spam. I browse the web for several hours reading around ad after ad. I turn on the radio and the DJ is trying to sell me something, and then plays the latest boy band song over and over again. I watch some TV and it's convinced that I need to buy maxi-pads, viagra, or heart-burn medication even though I'm a healthy young male. As soon as I sit down to program some telemarketer calls offering yet another sales pitch for refinancing (I don't own a home). The end result is that I'd rather eat strange Japanese ice cream than listen to yet another ad trying to part me and my money. I think Dick Cheney had some choice words that I could share with these people.

Engadget et. al are already advertising on their website, but the thought of some of their loyal readers not being inundated with ads is just too much too handle. Companies are very much like governments -- governments operate under the assumption that if there's something out there that can be taxed then it ought to be taxed. Likewise, companies feel that if they have the captive attention of people then they better put some ads in front of those eyeballs.

So what could Engadget do so that it doesn't have to resort to advertising as the only model for revenue? Well, how about providing additional features for paying subscribers? Paying subscribers could get feeds with additional analysis, tips, comments, or whatever. Including high quality images or extra images related to the story is another option. Paying subscribers could be allowed to update their feeds as often as every 5 minutes, or have access to feeds that don't have news items that are slightly time delayed. The list goes on and on.

By the way, I'm still working on a scheme so that I can figure out a way to make money off of Engadget / Weblogs Inc. every time I refer to them. That's free publicity for them, and I'll be damned if I can't squeeze everyone under the sun for some money.
Posted by Dudley at 11:03 PM
4th of July This evening my dad and I headed first to Prospect Park which over looks downtown Providence to check out the fireworks. Didn't see any activity in downtown Providence, but on the horizon we saw fireworks displays in 9 different locations. Eventually we walked to downtown lugging the tripod along since I was told it's essential for taking good photos of fireworks. There were no fireworks in Providence on the 4th of July. I saw other people wondering around downtown Providence who looked equally confused by the lack of fireworks. Apparently, there were fireworks last night. I really need to suffer through the local news once in a while.
Posted by Dudley at 03:25 AM

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