Thursday, December 09, 2004

The Most Hated Ads

An interesting little look at the most hated advertising techniques on your computer can be seen here. I always wonder about the people that use techniques like these. Do they really think, for example, that I won't notice the fact that there is no close button on a pop up? How am I supposed to be open and respectful of them and their message when they are trying to stick their foot in the cyber door or trying to pretend they are a part of windows itself? I know enough to not click on the darn thing at all (right click on the windows taskbar and select 'close') but these creeps make it really difficult to teach computer phobic people - like my folks - and in effect drive them away from the computer altogether. It's an example of a kind of market failure. The seller is only thinking of the one transaction and not the larger issue of web functionality. If web functionality is driven too low, however, everyone suffers. I do consider myself a free market sort of person but I'm well aware that markets need minimal rules in order to function. Like stable currency, like the rule of law, the right to private property, etc. For now the only point I want to make is that there is a world of difference in how you handle an event that you perceive to be a 'one of,' and how you handle an event that you are likely to face again and again. The first sort is quick, brusque and short and the second sober, mature and balanced.

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