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Peak Advertising and the Future of the Web

"Advertising is not well. Though companies supported by advertising still dominate the landscape and capture the popular imagination, cracks are beginning to show in the very financial foundations of the web. Despite the best efforts of an industry, advertising is becoming less and less effective online. The once reliable fuel that powered a generation of innovations on the web is slowly, but perceptibly beginning to falter. Consider the long-term trend: when the first banner advertisement emerged online in 1994, it reported a (now) staggering clickthrough rate of 78%. By 2011, the average Facebook advertisement clickthrough rate sat dramatically lower at 0.05%. Even if only a rough proxy, something underlies such a dramatic change in the ability for an advertisement to pique the interest of users online. What underlies this decline, and what does it mean for the Internet at large? This short [PDF] paper puts forth the argument for peak advertising—the argument that an overall slowing in online advertising will eventually force a significant (and potentially painful) shift in the structure of business online. Like the theory of Peak Oil that it references, the goal is not to look to the immediate upcoming quarter, but to think on the decade-long scale about the business models that sustain the Internet." [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Jun 3, 2014 - 173 comments

The logical conclusion of our relationship to computers: expectantly to type “what is the meaning of my life” into Google.

It’s for your own good—that is Google’s cherished belief. If we want the best possible search results, and if we want advertisements suited to our needs and desires, we must let them into our souls. James Gleick writes about 'How Google Dominates Us' for the New York Review of Books. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty on Aug 1, 2011 - 61 comments

Google Click Fraud

Google sued by Click Defense for click fraud. Earlier Google had sued Auction Experts for click fraud. Meanwhile Google shows profits up 600% and its shares cross $300. Will Google eat itself. What is Click Fraud and how to fight it.
posted by webmeta on Jul 1, 2005 - 9 comments

Top Google Ads

This is a story about some yahoo who registered several domains to spread his story about developing Peritoneal Mesothelioma after having Laser Hair Removal in Washington DC. For some reason he thought Wisconsin Lemon Laws were in his favor and he'd soon get a huge settlement paid with Best Buy gift cards. It turns out he should have had temporary medical insurance. Now he is looking for a Personal Injury Solicitor.
posted by Mick on Apr 12, 2005 - 45 comments

SocioEconomics of GoogleAds

The Price of/for Attention
"While it's interesting (and soul-crushingly depressing) to discover bidding wars over keywords associated with human suffering, I'm focused on the idea that I can pull data about web users' interest in different subjects out of this data."
The fight to get attention on humanitarian crises, the dynamics of web browsing, and something like statistical game theory meet for a greased wrestling match in GoogleAds.
posted by freebird on Oct 1, 2004 - 6 comments

First, do no evil...unless it costs us money

Sorry Matt, you can't post in this thread. Google changes its Adsense agreement so that anyone participating in the program is barred from talking about the program. First rule of Adsense, there is no Adsense.
posted by Mick on Oct 3, 2003 - 30 comments

Overture sues Google over ad "technology,"

Overture sues Google over ad "technology," saying Overture invented and has patented pay-for-placement on search engines, and Google's AdWords infringes on that. That strikes me as totally nuts -- how are Google ads paid search engine placement in anything but the very broadest terms? Are MeFi's TextAds next? PyRads?
posted by brookish on Apr 6, 2002 - 7 comments

Google rejects AdWords critical of Scientology.

Google rejects AdWords critical of Scientology. I hate this topic but I can't leave it alone. Google is being accused of being overly cautious in all its dealings with Scientology. A Google rep is quoted to say that they are under no pressure from Scientology to reject the ads. (more inside)
posted by maudlin on Mar 27, 2002 - 25 comments

Google expands advertising options...

Google expands advertising options... and still doesn't appear to have blown their rep.
posted by baylink on Oct 4, 2000 - 7 comments

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