The curious case of Google’s SEO searchers

They may no longer be relevant, but most (all?) of our sites still have meta keyword tags. When we redevelop a site, we tend to take the header tags in full from the previous incarnation, so unlike the old joke about George Washington’s axe (‘This is the original. I’ve only had the handle and blade […]

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Having less and less faith in websites

It’s a pity Zapier’s email systems don’t work because the people seem very nice. I signed up to the service in December, but eventually unsubscribed from all their emails by going to the email preferences’ page and selecting the appropriate option. It didn’t stop the emails from coming, so I wrote to them to advise […]

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Beware AI; the dangers of Google ads; and the beauty of Radio.garden

Hat tip to Stefan Engeseth on this one: an excellent podcast with author, historian and philosopher Yuval Noah Harari. Among the topics he covers, as detailed in the summary in Linkedin’s The Next Big Idea: • AI is the first technology that can take power away from us • if we are not careful, AI […]

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More evidence that contextual advertising is better than creepy, programmatic behavioural ads

Cory Doctorow posted a link to his collection of links at Pluralistic for August 5, 2020. The first one’s heading piqued my interest: ‘Contextual ads can save media’. It’s worth having a read, especially about the BS behind behavioural advertising (i.e. surveillance advertising) and the ‘real-time bidding’ that so many ad networks have been trying […]

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The erosion of standards

For homeowners and buyers, there’s a great guide from Moisture Detection Co. Ltd. called What You Absolutely Must Know About Owning a Plaster-Clad Home, subtitled The Origin of New Zealand’s Leaky Building Crisis and Must-Know Information for Owners to Make Their Homes Weathertight, and Regain Lost Value.    My intent isn’t to repeat someone’s copyrighted […]

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Contextual targeting worked, so why abandon it?

Didn’t I already say this?     Contextual targeting worked for so long on the web, although for some time I’ve noticed ads not displaying on sites where I’ve blocked trackers or had third-party cookies turned off. That means there are ad networks that would rather do their clients, publishers and themselves out of income […]

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How is your ad network different from this?

No point beating around the bush when it comes to yet another advertising network knocking on our door. This was a quick reply I just fired off, and I might as well put it on this blog so there’s another place I can copy it from, since I’m likely to call on it again and […]

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Online advertising dollars: Google’s cut from your work is 40 per cent

From Bob Hoffman’s The Ad Contrarian newsletter of May 24: ‘two weeks ago a study by the ISBA and PcW that reported that half of every “programmatic” ad dollar is scraped by adtech middlemen’ and ‘According to a paper written by Fiona Scott Morton, an economist at Yale University, Google pockets about 40¢ of every […]

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Why I don’t sign up to new online ad networks in a hurry

In the early days, banner advertising was pretty simple. By the turn of the century, we dealt with a couple of firms, Burst Media and Gorilla Nation, and we had a few buy direct. Money was good.    This is the pattern today if we choose to say yes to anyone representing an ad network. […]

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Facebook: no change, business as usual

I would have loved to have seen this go to trial, but Facebook and the plaintiffs—a group of advertising agencies alleging they had been swindled by the social network—settled.    Excerpted from The Hollywood Reporter, ‘The suit accused Facebook of acknowledging miscalculations in metrics upon press reports, but still not taking responsibility for the breadth […]

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