We must destroy X10! (or, should we?)
September 3, 2001 12:09 PM   Subscribe

We must destroy X10! (or, should we?) German industrial band Kompressor has released a song about destroying one of the most annoying pop-up advertisers on the web, X10. (X10 sells spy/web cameras that "go anywhere", if you don't know by now.) The best part about this guy is not the subject matter, but the music- he's like a German electronic version of Wesley Willis. Despite the fact that most commercial web sites rely on ads for revenue, and ad-blocking software is easy to get-- who are we to argue with this guy?!
posted by Turtletail (20 comments total)
i was interested in getting some small wireless cams to wire up my house - the driveway, front door, back yard area. x10 would've been a definite option but i decided i don't want to support them and give them the impression these pop-under ads are working otherwise it will just give them more reason to continue w/these ads. i already have ad-blocking software so i don't see the x10 ads but i'm not going to support them regardless.

so mefi'ers, can anyone suggest some cool alternatives for wiring up my house w/surveillence cameras? i'd like to control them from my pc, be able to view the cams from my pc and even vcr and if possible would love to control them from a web interface. i saw something that CompUSA that has this whole x10 kinda package but after buying the equipment you have to pay the company a monthly fee. i can't think of the name of the company right now and i don't want to pay a monthly fee to use my cams w/their online web interface. i can host my own cams.
posted by suprfli at 12:32 PM on September 3, 2001

Can't say I have an alternative to suggest, but the X-10 cameras are shite. If by "wireless," they mean "connected by giant wires to enormous transmitter and reciever bases," and if their definition of "amazing" is "works up to several feet," then their advertising is completely accurate and true.
posted by kevspace at 12:36 PM on September 3, 2001

I have not used this one, but it sure looks interesting.
posted by jeffbarr at 12:58 PM on September 3, 2001

This is silly.

Even without X10, there'll still be pop up ads. Who gives a rats ass whether there's one advertiser over the entire net, or ten thousand? An ad is an ad.

X10's campaign has actually been extremely successful, and they were smart enough to pick up on the lull in the advertising industry. If anything, they are helping in their little way to keep things moving.

So, once again, is it a problem with the ads, or a problem with X10?
posted by wackybrit at 1:00 PM on September 3, 2001

"Real" wireless spy cameras start at least $400, and that doesn't include the reciever. If you just want a surveillence camera expect to pay $150 a pop. Sorry I don't have a link. I did some research a while ago to see if it would be feasible to just have a couple cameras to play with. None of which I found were wireless, but they did have ethernet connections. All were large grocery store cameras. I have no idea how well a rigged web cam would work (I'm guessing that's just what the X10 is). Keep in mind web cams were meant for someone a few feet away not a hundred yards.
posted by geoff. at 1:02 PM on September 3, 2001

Ok ok...but what about this new ad at the Weather Channel?
posted by Mark at 1:31 PM on September 3, 2001

i actually love that flash ad. quick, to the point, effective. gimmicky enough not to be annoying, and it gets itself out of my way when it's done.
posted by o2b at 2:39 PM on September 3, 2001

Red Robot Theme is my fav Kompressor song.

Krush all human! Leave your city in ruin!
posted by hwnd at 3:27 PM on September 3, 2001

"An ad is an ad."

Thats not exactly true. Pop-under ads are the worst. Keep the ads on the page and unitrusive so I can continue to ignore them.
posted by howa2396 at 4:12 PM on September 3, 2001

Pop-under ads are the worst.

no way, respawning ones are worse.

porn sites, who me?
posted by juv3nal at 4:22 PM on September 3, 2001

And he's also got a remix of our beloved Tunak Tunak Tun. I think I prefer the original. ;-)
posted by caveday at 6:27 PM on September 3, 2001

However much intrest these people are generating, they are killing good will. CmdrTaco at. al. Used to rave about x-10 style home automation stuff, but he actualy said "I'll never buy from them again." On the main slashdot page a while back.

It's just amazing that a company can be so blind to the animosity they are creating...
posted by delmoi at 9:07 PM on September 3, 2001

It's just amazing that a company can be so blind to the animosity they are creating...

Listen, boys and girls. Remember: the lottery is big, big, big. People buy things based on stupidity all the time. Why should they be worried about "animosity"?
posted by ParisParamus at 9:16 PM on September 3, 2001

why is everyone talking about how much x10 sucks and not how much kompressor rocks? spread the love.
posted by c at 9:33 PM on September 3, 2001

i'm sorry, but the image that immediately showed up damn near scared me away.
posted by lotsofno at 10:15 PM on September 3, 2001

X10 aren't the ONLY popup ads around, but they are by far the most pervasive and common. X10's "wireless camera" ads have been around for years, bad ads selling a bad product in an annoying way (pop unders) with the use of some of the most offensive "mainstream" advertising around.

So yes, seek and destroy.

Then again, this is like Spam, you know you don't use it, you know that people you know SAY they don't use it either. Everyone you speak to finds it annoying. But it's life-cycle continues undiminished because people do fall for the stuff. If they didn't it wouldn’t be around......most mysterious.

I'm guessing that X10's advertising is so insulting and their advertising is so universally-hated that when people buy their stuff and it doesn't work, they often feel half-responsible for being silly enough to fall for the scam in the first place, so they put the box in the attic with all those other failed experiments in gadgeteering and put the whole thing down to experience.

Because basically, this sort of cheap surveillance gadget is a conundrum. You know X10 can't produce anything this cheaply that is going to live up to the promises made in the advertising. It's like cheap "professional quality" walkie-talkies; there's no such thing.
posted by lucien at 2:04 AM on September 4, 2001

so web-vertisers have come up with a "new" interpretation of the pop-up banner.

i never really liked pop-up banners. but i have gotten used to clicking them away.

as much as a i hate pop-ups, for *some* reason pop-unders seem to be a little too annoying, a little too sneaky, and a little too obstrusive and disturbing. is it just because they are "new"? is it because you don't really notice that they are there? is it that you only see them when you close your main browser window? is it because that, when you close your main window, you are, or at least i am, in a "i am about to shut down the computer and go outside"-mode, unwilling to pay attention to a commercial message at that very moment? is it because only "cheap" items seem to be advertised via pop-unders?

yes, doubleclick is serving some of the them, but as the entire web-vertising industry is in desperate need for client business, of course they are gonna be creative and look for new means of advertising.

after all the praise of target advertising, why, being in hamburg, germany, do i *still* get all the annoying banners that advertise products not relevant or not sold or shipped over here? why do i store a member profile with my ICQ, revealing my location, and *still* ICQ has no better idea to auto-update my application and sneak non-relevant banner ads up my a**? OF COURSE i will apply a patch to my icq.exe that will stop this advertisement once and for all.

i really don't mind the internet being commercial. it's far too late to be a crybaby. i can still have my internet underground. i know where to look for it.

but every once in a while, it seems that i can't avoid getting a pop-under ad here and there.

i made up my mind. i will not buy items that are advertised in pop-under ads.

now i just hope they won't start selling toilet paper this way ,-)

posted by HeikoH at 4:17 AM on September 4, 2001

I still think that X10 is probably getting bitched at so much because they're the only major pop-under advertiser.

In our lives, we're used to seeing advertising, but we expect each advert to be from a different company. If you turn on the TV, you'll see toothpaste ads, cereal ads, computer ads, etc etc.. but on pop-unders we're just seeing.. hidden cams, hidden cams, hidden cams, hidden cams.

Pop-under ads are just as annoying as pop-up ads (and, in fact, are less obtrusive).. but we're more pissed about pop-under ads because only one company seems to be pushing their use. Hence, we can blame a single company, rather than 2000 publishers... a lot easier.

And is it a bad ad? For us, maybe.. but their conversion rate isn't too bad.
posted by wackybrit at 1:35 PM on September 4, 2001

Would it be that hard to develop a piece of software which filters out pop-ups?
posted by ParisParamus at 3:03 PM on September 4, 2001

I really find the new X10 ads creepy, that grainy picture of the woman from the back with her shirt off...*shudder*....

That's what makes them even more insidious. That the ad campaign isn't just about 'hey buy our nifty little cameras!' Its trying to turn the entire internet into a wasteland of popup ads with dubious moral sentiment within. (Ok, a little dramatic...but you get my point)

Something's just super yucky about them pushing the idea of peeping tommery.
posted by glenwood at 7:42 PM on September 4, 2001

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