Friday, September 07, 2007

goodbye advertising

I've seen posts from both Noah and Nathan this week on the Firefox app AdBlock. I'm pretty sure it's not a new idea, although I can't be bothered to research it properly. Anyhow, it seems to have captured our attention.

Here's a thought: As more of these ad-censoring technologies are adopted, will people start to miss advertising?
Marketing folk have just about started to acknowledge (probably over an expensive lunch) that they have to create "ideas" that consumers actively choose to interact with, rather than passively accept. With that in mind, we'll be depriving ourselves of great entertainment and social currency by using AdBlock and its brothers and cousins.

Secondly, perhaps we'll also the miss bad ads and irritating messages?
If you were only ever exposed to things you outright chose, life would be boring. Imagine never running into the annoying guy from your last job; never hearing a bad joke and galleries only featuring artwork you completely approve of. Picture a dating site that only ever presented you with perfect matches. You would be deprived the smug satisfaction of ignoring someone yourself. Life would be dull.

There are of course, plenty of banner ads we won't miss at all, but I do think to some degree, we enjoy people fighting for our attention and we like turning our noses up at things. We like talking about things that are bad as well as good. Hopefully this censoring will rid us of the meaningless, but maybe it will remind us that dismissing things is much more enjoyable if we do it ourselves?



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