Friday, February 15, 2008

Unscrupulous Advertising on Web Logs

I have a webpage that is devoted to 'Harvest Moon', an incredible series of games created by a Japanese company named Marvelous Interactive and produced in English by Natsume. These games are suitable for ALL ages, from young children to the eldest elders. It therefore infuriated me to find a comment there, with respect to my most recent post, that amounted to no more than shameless, unethical advertising... but advertising that would frighten some readers and perhaps even discourage them from visiting the site again.

The comment was from some one who was marketing 'anti-spyware'. Purporting to have 'discovered an unknown virus' on my site, the individual then gave a link to his/her site where one could purchase the 'anti-spyware' software! First of all, I am deeply opposed to the recent proliferation of advertising on internet sites. Even Google encourages web logs to use advertising as a means of gaining income from weblogs although, to Google's credit, it does not FORCE one to include such advertising the way AOL does now! I will not join the ranks of people who think that making a penny or two from the viewing of their webpages is worth the intrusion of marketing devices on their sites.

This 'comment', however, was more insidious and wicked than those that simply advertise 'tanning beds' or other nonsense. It actually could frighten children and/or their parents, if they were not computer-savvy into thinking that access to my site would endanger the health of their computers! I doubt the person who posted the advert really thought about the implications OR CARED. It is a great pity, however, because my game guides involve months of work but I offer them free to every one...

That is how deep my opposition to exploitation runs...


Mountain Gnome said...

Hi Freyashawk

Yes I noticed that comment, gave it some thought, but certainly did not click on it! I agree, the web has in someplaces become too focussed on advertising, and this detracts from the original purpose of some sites. On the otherhand however sites like Ripple (see link on my blog) use this to help developing countries, for me a good cause.

I am glad to see that you removed the offending comment and also please to know that your site is virus free (like I ever doubted that)!

Keep well

Freyashawk said...

Well, a person who creates a site has the right to include advertising if he or she chooses... but some one who goes to another person's site with what I consider 'terrorist advertising' in order to sell THEIR 'anti-spyware' by frightening the ignorant into thinking the site is infected, that is unethical!
I never used to moderate comments but now I do. Unfortunately, there are a multitude of advertisers who abuse my name in order to draw people to THEIR sites. If you do a search on google for Freyashawk, you will find thousands of hits, many of them purporting to be links to my guides but which in fact sell tanning beds and other bizarre stuff, simply using my name to get people to click on the link!

And yes, I agree with you that there is good advertising and bad advertising and I followed your link to 'Ripple' when you first posted it... That is a clever use of capitalist tools to help others.