These videos and ads are obnoxious. Reformat when?

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  1. Kyler J Falk profile image91
    Kyler J Falkposted 14 months ago

    I'm dying for a reformat as it concerns the placement of ads on articles, lest I be forced to unpublish and move all my articles in favor of a site that works harder on QoL (pretending I even matter here, lol, let me have my pretentious crybaby moment). Most annoyingly, it is the videos and animated ads that really make most articles aesthetically off-putting. Sure, I can block them and exit out of the video, but really if I didn't care about much of the authors here I'd just navigate right the hell away from the bombardment of ads.

    Can we, please, have the animated ads moved to the margins; at the very least not have six of the same ad appearing after each section? As well, could the video play in the upper right corner whilst scrolling like most sites do, rather than the dead center of the top of the screen, or remove it completely because of its lack of relevance? That format works for the video on a large vertical screen, but it is a rare few who have the time to read and also use large vertical screens.

    As of now I feel like I'm scrolling a site owned by script kiddies in college trying to make a quick buck with bots. It's killing my desire to remain here. I'd prefer a more professional look in lieu of my own professionalism, ya dig?

    1. Jodah profile image90
      Jodahposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      I am with you all the way. I hate it, and so do most of the authors here.

    2. always exploring profile image78
      always exploringposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      I agree completely. I have no desire to write. The ads, plus not able to comment is just too much.

  2. viking305 profile image92
    viking305posted 14 months ago

    I agree, it is so unprofessional.  I hate the way my articles look now with all those adverts.

  3. Jodah profile image90
    Jodahposted 14 months ago

    They may not take our concerns seriously as authors, but they need to realise that "we" are also readers.

    1. Shesabutterfly profile image94
      Shesabutterflyposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      I agree. I avoid HP articles when doing searches because they have become so hard to read.

      When these concerns were first brought up Samantha said they were not seeing any adverse affects on readership. I doubt they are planning any reformatting in the near future unfortunately.

  4. Misbah786 profile image86
    Misbah786posted 14 months ago

    Agreed Jodah

  5. daydreams profile image95
    daydreamsposted 14 months ago

    I also agree- and it's not as if the flashing adverts have significantly increased the money I make either.

    As a reader I hate reading articles on sites with so many adverts and random videos that launch when you don't want them too -I often just give up reading them.  I  don't want to spend time reading stuff here like I used to.

    It puts me off writing more articles here.

    1. always exploring profile image78
      always exploringposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      Where do you write? Not being noisy, just have no idea about other sites. Thank you.

      1. Jodah profile image90
        Jodahposted 14 months agoin reply to this

        Ruby, you may check out MyLot.com. It may or may not be your cup of tea, but it seems simple enough, there is some sense of community, and you can earn there from your articles.

        1. always exploring profile image78
          always exploringposted 14 months agoin reply to this

          Thank you Jodah.

  6. Kyler J Falk profile image91
    Kyler J Falkposted 14 months ago

    If we are to be taken seriously, to have our concerns addressed in an appropriate way, it would seem HubPages wants us to prove that the ads are ugly and off-putting. I really don't understand why they don't see how ugly six of the same gold ad on a five section article is, and even sillier is why they would need to suffer damages to change such an ugly format.

    Medium, from my perspective, has both a better format and is less critical of, "bloggy," articles. Many of their writers actually take a much more personal approach to even the most serious of topics, and it is almost preferable to HP's almost-strict, "How-to," desires. It'd be nice not to have to leave HubPages, though, and instead have HP compromise on the ads situation.

    1. Jodah profile image90
      Jodahposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      This was posted on another thread:

      Sammanthacubbison:

      Reinstating comments have been a priority since we figured out that we couldn't transfer them to the new platform. It just took time to get to it. And yes, the videos are actually performing quite well, so they won't be going away any time soon!

    2. ziyena profile image93
      ziyenaposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      Meidum is subscription based and so its platform can afford to sway from obtrusive ads.  As for HP ... we wouldnt get paid well without the oddities.  But, I agree there must be a better visual way of placement, or less bombardment that doesnt effect the revenue.  Good discussion

    3. liesl5858 profile image84
      liesl5858posted 14 months agoin reply to this

      I was about to complain about the adverts on my articles and then I saw yours above. You are right, it is frustrating reading my articles and others articles too. In fact my article is swimming in ads and video that I could hardly see my article and yet the margin of the article is free of ads. I do understand we get some pennies from the ads but how would Hubpages.com expect readers to read the articles when they can't see them as the articles are drowned by the advertisements. I get frustrated trying to read my own articles and others too. I hope that Hubpages will see our point of view and do something about it before all the hubbers go somewhere else to write. Thank you Kyler for pointing out the problems we have here.

  7. Everyday Miracles profile image87
    Everyday Miraclesposted 14 months ago

    On another of my accounts (this is my oldest account, which I don't keep up with other than in the forums any more), I have a hub titled "Should I Tell My Child She's Adopted." It's been moved to "We Have Kids," which is great. The problem is the video ads displaying on this article relate to pregnancy, which is not only completely irrelevant, but honestly irreverent for people who may be experiencing infertility. (Ironic, when you consider I have a whole account devoted to topics relating to natural pregnancy.)

    I'm not informed as to whether there is a way for me to reject a particular ad as being potentially problematic for my readers, because in this case, I would not be surprised if the reader simply left thinking the entire article wasn't relevant to them as an adoptive (not biological) parent.

    If there is not a way for us to reject potentially problematic video ads, I believe there ought to be. I'd like to write more on this topic and it's hard, knowing that I'm already going to be swimming upstream as someone who doesn't agree with modern adoption practice in the US in the first place. But to place these ads on the articles means they are far less likely to be read, and therefore I can do less to help people like the child I was.

    1. Shesabutterfly profile image94
      Shesabutterflyposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      In the past Samantha said they were working on making more videos, but im assuming that will take months if not years. Even if they do create more there will always be subject matter with irrelevant videos, because there are simply too many topics on the niche sites.

      Unfortunately we do not get a choice to opt out of the videos, and it's my understanding we will not get to pick between different videos either (assuming they create more than one video per niche site).

      I would say wehavekids has one of the most problematic videos of all the niche sites. Having a video like that on struggling to conceive and adoption articles is really insensitive. I hope wehavekids is one of the first sites to get multiple videos or they at least create something more broad. Wehavekids is so much more than pregnancy and the video really needs to portray that.

      1. DrMark1961 profile image95
        DrMark1961posted 14 months agoin reply to this

        I think I am being oversensitive here, but the Pethelpful video seems about as inappropriate as it gets. Having a cat video show up as soon as a reader opens an article about dogs, fish, or exotics is beyond the pale.

        1. Shesabutterfly profile image94
          Shesabutterflyposted 14 months agoin reply to this

          Yes I agree that one needs to be changed asap too. I mentioned wehavekids because I have more of an emotional stance on pregnancy/infertility/adoption.

          On the other hand I personally like both so it doesn't bother me as much, but I do know people who hate cats and would leave immediately upon seeing that video on a dog/fish/ect article. Same if it where a dog video on a cat article so I do not think you are being over sensitive. Irrelevant and insensitive content should not be allowed on our articles without our permission.

          I think the videos are pointless no matter the topic, but it seems they have somehow increased readership (not sure how they are measuring that) so unfortunately are not going anywhere.

          Personally I would like to see the videos changed before comments are reinstated (due to their lack of relevance, not because I think comments are unnecessary). I'd like to see both changes happen, but I think the videos need to take priority and I honestly do not care how much readership is affected positively. When we are offending readers and the sites author's that is a problem.

        2. lobobrandon profile image87
          lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

          Not really at least those are still pets. If you want to get inappropriate take a look at Dengarden, Look at life in a different colour, be your own handy man, etc. on my tomato hubs. I hate to imagine that there are even worse matches out there.

          1. DrMark1961 profile image95
            DrMark1961posted 14 months agoin reply to this

            Sad. I do not think we can turn off the videos, but can someone like Kyler still turn off the ads if he does not want to earn any income from this site?

            1. eugbug profile image98
              eugbugposted 14 months agoin reply to this

              Maybe if he leaves the ad program. But then do Hubpages continue to serve ads and they get 100% of the revenue? I don't think ads can be turned off on a per site basis.

            2. lobobrandon profile image87
              lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

              There was an option in the past to turn off ads (did not check recently). This needed to be done individually on every hub.

              1. eugbug profile image98
                eugbugposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                From this it seems you can, assuming the option is still functional and the drop-down list hasn't just been left in place.


                https://hubstatic.com/15448582_f1024.jpg

      2. Everyday Miracles profile image87
        Everyday Miraclesposted 14 months agoin reply to this

        I do hope they make this a priority. The insensitivity is going to drive people away from these articles, and it's frustrating when keeping people on the articles is how we make money, but also how we help the intended audience for those articles. The videos are already beyond obnoxious (I can barely read articles on any of the network sites on my PC because almost the entire window is taken up with ads) but the point should never be to trigger the person who is looking for information and help.

        1. lobobrandon profile image87
          lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

          They do not care about the reader, it is a for-profit venture. The reader lands on an article and there is an ad on the video. This ad is seen by all who do not have an adblocker. The video, therefore, does "very well". People are hitting the back button, but that does not matter the ad has generated revenue. It's sad.

          If the page had quality content with good placement of ads the content would get more links, etc. and eventually rank better and get more views thus more income.

          What we have is what you'd expect from a team (Maven) that is short-term oriented. They may be in the game for the long haul, but $s now in this quarter is what matters.

          1. tsmog profile image81
            tsmogposted 14 months agoin reply to this

            Does the length time for HP to receive revenue that we, too, receive revenue?

            1. lobobrandon profile image87
              lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

              I am not sure I understand your question. But it is a revenue share system so we make 60% and HP 40% of all revenue. In the past, it was ad position based but now it is a flat share if I am not wrong, i.e. if nothing has changed in the past few months.

              1. tsmog profile image81
                tsmogposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                Quoting you, "People are hitting the back button, but that does not matter the ad has generated revenue." So, does that mean we, too, have generated revenue?

                1. lobobrandon profile image87
                  lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                  Yes.

              2. eugbug profile image98
                eugbugposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                Do we know whether that is still even the case? I think those numbers were removed from the TOS. For all we know we may be just getting a token payment. What annoys me is Maven's attitude on social media. They pretty much ignore any questions and just broadcast.

                1. lobobrandon profile image87
                  lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                  For the same amount of traffic the earnings are in general gone up, so they either have people paying a lot more for ads or they have the same 60-40 split with a slight increase in ad costs. I think the latter is more likely.

                  Samantha once replied to your comments saying that the people at Maven have no real say in such matters and that you should contact the HP team and not Maven on social media. It isn't surprising that they ignore you. I would bet that they would ignore you anyway. That's typically how some of these companies work.

                  1. eugbug profile image98
                    eugbugposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                    I do sometimes ask them questions about their other sites too (non HubPages) and report problems/make suggestions. I presume I have to interact with those site's admins too about these issues? Also they still haven't added Dengarden to the "Home" category of their site search page.

  8. psycheskinner profile image84
    psycheskinnerposted 14 months ago

    Like many of us, I have contributed to many content sites that failed by over-advertising.  It always goes the same way -- more obnoxious ads increase earnings over the short term.  But as their earnings per visitor go, up the traffic goes down down down.  They make the ads even more obnoxious to try and compensate and eventually crash their popularity completely.  Hubpages succeeded for so long by resisting this trap, has the new leadership fallen for it?

    1. CrossCreations profile image81
      CrossCreationsposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      Good points @psychskinner ^^ ONE that over-advertizing has been the demise of many content sites and TWO that any increase in earnings will be short term. Making the ads even more obnoxious is certain to crash eventually. Once integrity is lost, very hard to recover if even possible. Over-advertising is a trap, especially for a content site.

  9. eugbug profile image98
    eugbugposted 14 months ago

    I think they should do a trial. Turn off the obnoxious ads for a few weeks and see what the effects are on viewership and bounce rate. The worst user experience is on desktop. It's not quite so bad on mobile devices. Title photos take forever too to load on mobile devices, within the categories. Also the title video that opens after the banner ad closes, stays on screen during scrolling with no "X" for closing, so it obscures the top 1/3 of the screen. This seems to happen sometimes after scrolling down and then back up again to the top. Could ads be clearly identified as ads by having an outline or background colour or label? Often it's not immediately obvious where text from the article stops and the ad begins.

  10. eugbug profile image98
    eugbugposted 14 months ago

    Just checked that. Turning ads off no longer seems to work.

    1. lobobrandon profile image87
      lobobrandonposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      Oh. Thanks for checking.

  11. NateB11 profile image91
    NateB11posted 14 months ago

    Been trying to decide whether to join this discussion or not. At any rate, my first thought is that many "reputable", well-known sites for long-standing publications have way more intrusive ads on their sites than HP ever has; and they remain successful sites. So, I'm not sure the effect of having, more or less, in this case, one video that is marginally obstructive on a page on the site. It seems to me the effect is negligible.

    1. CrossCreations profile image81
      CrossCreationsposted 14 months agoin reply to this

      Couldn't disagree more @NateB11 - how is a video that takes up the entire above the fold space and follows the reader down the page "marginally obstructive" or "negligable" ???
      If there actually ARE reputable sites with more intrusive ads, I am not aware of them. What sites are you referring to?

      1. NateB11 profile image91
        NateB11posted 14 months agoin reply to this
        1. CrossCreations profile image81
          CrossCreationsposted 14 months agoin reply to this

          THX for response @NateB11 I was referring to sites that are platforms for writers similar to HubPages, not national news sites like CNN & NYTimes, etc. Still I did click most of the links above and saw no huge videos above the fold that follow the reader down the page like the HP videos do, not seeing that. Even if they did, not a reasonable comparison to look at HP compared to national news conglomerates.   

          Like many other writers, I am looking at similar platforms that host content from writers, such as: Medium, Wix, Weebly, SquareSpace & others like them. All of them have pros & cons, and some level of ads or site branding may be common, yet NONE slap a giant video on top of writer content the way HP does, not one. It's unacceptable.

          1. NateB11 profile image91
            NateB11posted 14 months agoin reply to this

            When did someone narrow down the discussion to just writing sites? I don't remember that part.

            1. Kyler J Falk profile image91
              Kyler J Falkposted 14 months agoin reply to this

              I did earlier in the thread, but I think her perspective is simply sites for self-publishing. I clicked on all those links, and the second I refreshed the page after turning my ad blocker off, I was turned off completely. I'd have the exact same complaints if I were an author for these sites, but they'd argue that the ads do well much like Samantha does for HP ads. 

              When an ad is displayed and played against your will, even clicked on because the way to close them is so small, of course those ads perform well. It is still fugly, and worthy of being reformatted (not removed). Margins exist for a reason, and even those sites that assault you with a popup video immediately have most of their ads in the margins rather than after every section, and sometimes splitting sections apart like HP.

              Case in point: Move them to the margins, not dead-center where it often obstructs reading, and even hinders QoL for the reader.

              1. NateB11 profile image91
                NateB11posted 14 months agoin reply to this

                Okay, yeah, fair argument. Her argument that the comparison is not reasonable is just laughable to me though. Fact is, too, the ads are intrusive on those sites.

                I can see moving ads to the margins though.

                1. Kyler J Falk profile image91
                  Kyler J Falkposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                  If we see it from the perspective of budget and reputation, then it is a false equivalent to compare HP to any of the big-name sites. Those sites can afford to pay for the front page of Google, whereas we are left to compete with skill and quality content.

                  I mean, just look at those sites you posted and some of the swill they put in the mix that gets undeserved attention. They didn't earn their seats on merit, they're piggybacking on their reputation and budget at least 50% of the time. Not to say HP or anyone else wouldn't and shouldn't do the same, just pointing out the false equivalent.

                  "Chrissy Teigen just bought thirty robes and everyone is raving about it!" is not worthy of a first page seat on google, Facebook shilling on the news section, and trending status on Twitter, lol! Copy and paste that same story to HP, have the other one never exist, and it will die immediately.

                  They could post nothing but ads anywhere they want and still perform better than HP, and that's where HP should strive for a higher standard of excellence.

                  1. Shesabutterfly profile image94
                    Shesabutterflyposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                    Completely agree! We should be comparing ourselves to thespruce for example. That is a site very similar to HP, a site HP use to outrank. Not really the case anymore. They were slow to diversify and create their own niche sites but now that they have, they are out ranking us more often than not. 99.9% of their ads are in the margin and the site simply looks cleaner and more attractive.

                  2. CrossCreations profile image81
                    CrossCreationsposted 14 months agoin reply to this

                    Yep ^^ a false comparison to try and compare huge news media networks to HP on so many levels. They are not even in same ballpark. Those sites have huge budgets and already have well established traffic - they are NOT hosting authors writing content seeking organic traffic.
                    Like Kyle said, they didn't earn their place on merit. Such large media networks don't even need to be concerned with traffic that much. As long as they report news the ways their wealthy sponsors tell them to do, they will make $$$. They can easily afford to buy traffic and then if they place ads they make even more $$$ - even when their ads are annoying and intrusive.
                    None of that ^^ compares to HP who depends on organic traffic, and yet HP tries to get away with annoying and intrusive ads?  Even if these ads are "performing well" temporarily, not a chance they will do so long term. In the end, only a high standard of integrity will save a self-publishing platform long term.
                    To compare HP to huge news networks sounds almost like comparing a blogger to amazon to me, a false comparison that makes no sense.
                    Thx @Shesabutterfly for the mention of thespruce - was not aware of that one, just went there and really LIKE the look. Very attractive and clean, well organized and some ads, but in margin only.

              2. liesl5858 profile image84
                liesl5858posted 14 months agoin reply to this

                I do agree Kyler. They could put the ads or videos on the margins on both sides not from the beginning of the article and bottom of the article.

  12. Brenda Arledge profile image81
    Brenda Arledgeposted 14 months ago

    I can feel your pain.
    But my main wish is that Hubpages would give us more credit for article views instead of clicks on ads.

  13. CrossCreations profile image81
    CrossCreationsposted 14 months ago

    I agree 100% about the video being awful. It's front and center HUGE above the fold in your face and even follows you as you scroll down the page!  Impossible to ignore, spammy and overly promotional to the max when HP claims to be strict about preventing spammy and overly promotional. HP does not allow members to do anything even NEAR this. The videos are over the top in your face way worse than anything a member would be allowed to do, yet defended as 'performing well' despite overall dismay from writers?   
    Priorities?

 
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