Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Advertisements in Newspaper websites

Advertisements in Newspaper websites

Of late many Indian newspaper websites are inserting as many as 8 advertisements on a single screen. The text or the matter you need to read is so badly hidden that even part of the header (title of the story) is hidden. If you install an Adblocker they detect and ask you to remove the Adblocker software. I refuse to visit websites that impolitely threaten me to do that. The worst offenders are The New Indian Express ad Times of India.

Advertisements are a great nuisance and annoyance to the reader. Some advertisements hijack you to move to their site even if you are just hovering around (not clicking) the AD area. Some play video with noise without any concern for what you are doing. That offending video AD may be somewhere, not easily locatable on the page.

In the case of Ads placed by Google, you are asked, when you try to close it, several questions like:

·         Is the AD repetitive,   
·         Is it irrelevant?           
·         Have you seen it earlier?       
·         Is the AD blocking text you want to read etc
However, if you have to answer these queries again and again for closing each AD you will get irritated and the concerned AD may not be from Google after all. Whatever Google ‘learns’ from your response is specific to the AD, its placement on THAT page / screen, to you as a reader etc.

How do you tackle this AD menace? Here are a few tips:

1.      Go to the epaper of the same newspaper. The link from where you came to know about a specific story will give you clues as how to reach the right date, city, page etc. You may use the Search facility also within the epaper. At least, as now, they are not inserting Ads in epapers.  
2.      You are interested in reading the news and not really from THAT stupid paper that is
insisting on serving Ads. SO go to some other newspaper and get the contents.
3.      If you are disturbed by unwanted sound from an offending video AD then look for a small speaker icon in the tab for that window at the top row and click it to muffle it.
4.      Go to one of the several news aggregator sites like scroll or samachar or sify and read the gist over there.
5.      If you can wait and get hold of a paper copy with your neighbors, try that route
6.       I subscribe (pay annual subscription) to The Hindu, TOI, Deccan Chronicle and Has India. On print (hard) copy, I have the option of skipping any number of Ads. Nobody can force me read the AD that I don’t want to waste my time. Why treat me differently when I go the website?
7.      If all these tricks fail, just leave it. What the heck if you don’t read it?

Please share with others tricks / tips you be using to fight these AD guys.

Addendum to the above - 26th Sep 2016

You may install readability.com extension in your browser. This strips all advertisements and gives a clean copy. In the case of TOI, the trick is to go to the TOI URL and click on readbility icon before the ADBLOCKER WARNING pops up. 

No comments:

Post a Comment