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Old 02-02-2010, 04:10 PM   #16
Steven Lyle Jordan
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This is where consumers and advertisers have opposing viewpoints. The consumer is OK with an ad as long as it doesn't "get in the way". Advertisers WANT the ads to "get in the way", otherwise they go unnoticed.
There's "get in the way," and there's "get in the way." Simply being there seems to be enough for some to claim the ads are "in the way." Usually, though, people learn to note the ads and move on with no more real distraction to their reading than they get when their pet shows up and curls into their lap.

Everyone wants their meat, but doesn't want to have to eat their vegetables. Ads are vegetables: They serve a purpose, and even if you aren't fond of them, you should understand why it's important to eat them.

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I've even seen some try to claim that changing the TV channel or walking about of the room when the commercials come on is "stealing" the content that the advertising is paying for.
That's just plain wrong, as it is not the consumer's transaction that created those ads... it was a transaction between the advertiser and the TV studio. Now, if a TV studio refused to run an ad that had paid for a show, or a DVD refused to include an ad that paid for a movie... that would be stealing. A consumer's failing to watch an ad is simply a failure of the advertiser to get and hold their attention.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:11 PM   #17
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I would have no problem with ebooks that contained ads for other books (either by the same author or by different authors but in the same genre) as long as they were at the beginning or end of the book. However, if the ads were inserted within the pages of the narrative, I would be very unreceptive regardless of the price of the book.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:15 PM   #18
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I do believe that if this goes forward, initial versions will be very understated and not a nuisance, in order to get consumers used to the idea. I seriously doubt it will stay that way though.
Look at the ads on this site. How bright, annoying and "in your face" are they? Not very, I daresay. And it's not as if this site just sprung up yesterday. As you said, the web's been around awhile... and there are still plenty of understated ads on long-standing sites. I reiterate: Assuming all ads will eventually become horribly annoying is an overreaction, and doesn't fit the evidence of the progression of ads on the web.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:16 PM   #19
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Ads in ebooks have several problems.

1) Portable ebook readers with small screens don't allow for non-annoying ads. Doesn't matter if they're text-based or not; a business-card sized ad is almost half a page on a 6" reader's screen, and that drastically disrupts the flow of the book. (Unless, of course, you put it at the beginning or end, where it'll be ignored.)

2) Different viewing technology means advertisers have no choice/control over how their ads are seen. I read on a PRS-505--color ads are wasted on me, and blinkies won't work. But people reading on an iPad could see full-color animations embedded in their ePubs.

3) The connection between "advertisement" and "sales" is always a bit thin, and you'd need some really impressive marketing to get ads in books to lead to sales of anything that's not other books. And the demographics for people who read ebooks, other than the romance/erotica genre, is too diverse to target for most ad companies. People who read ebooks of Twilight and Dan Brown aren't the same people who read the pbooks; ads aimed at the pbook crowd aren't as likely to work.

4) That ad-stripping script will go active about eight minutes after the first ad-laden books hits the digital shelves, and publishers and advertisers will scream themselves blue about how *that* is what's killing all their profits... not the fact that most people are going to ignore the ads they see in books.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:16 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Croptop View Post
I would have no problem with ebooks that contained ads for other books (either by the same author or by different authors but in the same genre) as long as they were at the beginning or end of the book. However, if the ads were inserted within the pages of the narrative, I would be very unreceptive regardless of the price of the book.
I wouldn't have an issue with an (understated) ad at the end of an occasional chapter. How would you feel about that... just curious.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:17 PM   #21
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This is fun. It is like throwing a match into a hay barn.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:27 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elfwreck View Post
Ads in ebooks have several problems.

1) Portable ebook readers with small screens don't allow for non-annoying ads. Doesn't matter if they're text-based or not; a business-card sized ad is almost half a page on a 6" reader's screen, and that drastically disrupts the flow of the book. (Unless, of course, you put it at the beginning or end, where it'll be ignored.)
I would think that the Ad inclusion would have to be dynamic so that it would take into account the user's eReader type.

Quote:

2) Different viewing technology means advertisers have no choice/control over how their ads are seen. I read on a PRS-505--color ads are wasted on me, and blinkies won't work. But people reading on an iPad could see full-color animations embedded in their ePubs.
Again that would need to be handled by the ePub format and inclusion/exclusion of ads by the individual eReader software.
Quote:

3) The connection between "advertisement" and "sales" is always a bit thin, and you'd need some really impressive marketing to get ads in books to lead to sales of anything that's not other books. And the demographics for people who read ebooks, other than the romance/erotica genre, is too diverse to target for most ad companies. People who read ebooks of Twilight and Dan Brown aren't the same people who read the pbooks; ads aimed at the pbook crowd aren't as likely to work.
Well the first ads would probably be rather ineffective. I do believe that Apple will do something to more target the consumer simply because the iPad is just ripe for them to get targetted information on the specific user.
Quote:

4) That ad-stripping script will go active about eight minutes after the first ad-laden books hits the digital shelves, and publishers and advertisers will scream themselves blue about how *that* is what's killing all their profits... not the fact that most people are going to ignore the ads they see in books.
I agree.

Last edited by paulckennedy; 02-02-2010 at 04:42 PM. Reason: corrected grammar
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:29 PM   #23
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I wouldn't have an issue with an (understated) ad at the end of an occasional chapter. How would you feel about that... just curious.
Ads at the end of a chapter aren't that intrusive. Hidden advertising links within the text ( kind of like Easter Eggs ) could be fun.

I just see it coming like an Avalanche.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:32 PM   #24
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I'm against ads in novels, except maybe discreet notices about similar titles, placed in the end pages. A German publisher once inserted a text ad in the middle of one of my books, using the characters from the story and saying it was time for them to take a break and have a warming cup of XXXX soup! The first I knew about it was when the UK publisher sent me the complimentary copies. The UK publisher didn't want to take up the cudgels on my behalf, so I hired a lawyer and got the German edition pulped (they were in breach of contract), plus a bit of compensation. Then we sold the German language rights to another firm.

Novels are a special case. You don't want to have the world of the book shattered by some intrusive message. Nonfiction might be different. As nonfiction ebooks become more sophisticated, with hypertext, the temptation for publishers will be to include sponsored links. This should be resisted!
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:39 PM   #25
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Is the inclusion of advertising part of an Author's contract with his publisher?
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:41 PM   #26
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context aware advertising would be pretty humorous in some cases.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:42 PM   #27
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This is fun. It is like throwing a match into a hay barn.
Well, this site has had its share of bonfires before... why stop now?
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:43 PM   #28
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A consumer's failing to watch an ad is simply a failure of the advertiser to get and hold their attention.
And advertisers will try more and more extreme measures in order to get and hold the consumer's attention. If you are relying on the restraint of advertisers to keep eBook ads understated, then you have a lot more faith in the advertising industry than I do.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:45 PM   #29
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Is the inclusion of advertising part of an Author's contract with his publisher?
In the print world, the author has little or no say in what gets inserted into their book as advertising. I'd imagine that in an e-book world, similar publishing contracts would have similar stipulations, IOW, the author would be at the mercy of the publisher's decisions.

Solution: Self-publish and make your own advertiser deals.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:47 PM   #30
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This came up ages ago, iirc Amazon got some patent for interactive ebook ads. The media and some posters got into a big hizzy, imagining that ebooks would have ads every 3 paragraphs and be sold for free.

Unsurprisingly, it hasn't happened yet. And since the economics of web-based advertising are pretty crappy, I doubt it will.

What's more likely is that the publisher might put an unobtrusive ad or two at the end of an ebook, similar to what they do with mass-market paperbacks.
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