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  1. #26
    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    Originally posted by mattmecham
    Does anyone *actually* wait for pop ups to load anyway?
    On my computer, a single popup doesn't bother me. It is done loading before I can even move my mouse to the close box. However, I do get annoyed when a site loads two, three or more popups when you load the first page. Not because they take time loading but because they change the focus of what I am doing.
    Wayne Luke
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  2. #27
    morphine for a wooden leg randem's Avatar
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    Originally posted by W. Luke
    However, I do get annoyed when a site loads two, three or more popups when you load the first page. Not because they take time loading but because they change the focus of what I am doing.
    Personally, I feel that even a single popup forces me to change the focus of what I'm doing. Instead of a rapid scan of a page in search of useful information, I'm now force to play a quick-draw contest to see if I can close the pop-up window faster than it can load the javascript that will open the next one and so on...

    Granted, not all pop-ups open a second window. But as the visitor, you don't know which type it will be until it's too late. If you aren't constantly trying to beat them, you will eventually be beaten by them. I know I'm not the only person who's done a tap-dance on the Alt-F4 combo to close a hundred windows, or just killed IExplore altogether for the sake of salvaging the ability to move my mouse before it's all said and done.

    All I can say is "thank you" to Mozilla, Opera, Galeon, et al, for ridding me of this nuisance. I'm shocked that Microsoft still hasn't "embraced and extended" this new feature for their own software.
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  3. #28
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    Microsoft hasn't, but there are plenty of folks who have improved IE without M$'s help. A visit to webattack.com will give you a nice selection of interfaces for the IE engine that include tabbed browsing, pop-up filters and some of them have better security options than IE.

  4. #29
    Grumpy Mole Man Skunk's Avatar
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    The latest version of the Google toolbar can apparently kill popup ads in IE. http://toolbar.google.com/

    Personally I stick with Mozzy

  5. #30
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    Thanks for all the replies, really interesting to read. Well, apart from randem's (I gave in on his when I realized that he couldn't make a point without derogatory comments).

    There's been lots of analogies, but I think the web is a different model really. Because bandwidth costs. So every visit, every page load effectively costs. It's not like a visitor doesn't use something. If there were no bandwidth, it wouldn't be so bad.

    My points were raised not so much about the types of advertising themselves. Like I said, I hate popups. I don't use them. I have stopped using sites that have agressive advertising (like SCIFI.COM). I just think ultimately at the end of the day, the webmaster should have the freedom to have popups if they want to. If that's the state of play on their website, and you don't like it, you don't go there. The website visitor shouldn't be able to have their cake and eat it (i.e visit, but defy what that webmaster wants to do).

    I think my reaction probably stems from me not likeing to be railroaded. I made the promise to my visitors that I wouldn't use popups, but that was my choice. If browsers want to railroad me into doing something or not doing something, I take offence and feel like being defiant!

    I suppose another angle of this, is how do you gain the browser user base? Through features that attract the end user? Or through appealing to the webmasters (that they can do what they want, and their website will appear in good condition) so that we return to the days of "Netscape Now" buttons. I imagine it's a fine balance.

  6. #31
    Non-Member Siltrince's Avatar
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    Hi , just posting here to tell you that this was a very interesting topic.

  7. #32
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    The website visitor shouldn't be able to have their cake and eat it
    Find that statement patently ridiculous. You put a site on the web because you want people to view it - simple as. If you don't want them to view it, don't put it up. If you want to set conditions on using the site - don't presume consent by the fact that they're taking a look (like pop-ups do), but ASK.

    Your take is analagous to INSISTING that people going into a shop have a couple of second chat with someone at the door, or consent to having a few cents/pennies taken from their pocket as they enter for the priveledge of shopping. How much custom dya think you'd get with that approach?

    Hat's off to Moz and Opera for keeping an eye on pickpockets for me while I'm out shopping, and fending off nasty survey people
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  8. #33
    SitePoint Wizard bbolte's Avatar
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    i'm pretty sure there is some wisdom to be found in the old cliche' "the customer is always right". if your customers (ie: browsers) don't want pop ups but the webmaster feels it is his right to put them there, you will soon know how to attract users (or turn away as the case may be).

    if you read much commentary on why so many websites/.com businesses failed and keep failing is that they fail to put the interests of the user first. it's pretty simple, if you want users, give them what they want.

    my guess would be that if you polled users on pop ups, you would come back with at least 75% would say no (it would probably be higher, trying to be optimistic). in the end, it isn't about what i as a web developer wants, it's what the user wants.

  9. #34
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    Originally posted by W. Luke
    Granted if you are running a content based business you need advertising on your site. But if you go through an agency like double-click, you are shooting yourself in the foot anyway. If you sold your own advertising you would make better money without reverting to popups, excessive banners and other things the public doesn't want.
    Good point.

    Originally posted by greg.harvey
    Webmaster? What's that? ...

    Ps -- sorry -- a few bad experiences with 'webmasters'. Jobsworths in my opinion.
    Never knowingly gets bogged down with semantics -- the Big Breakfast has a lot to answer for

    Very interesting discussion by the way.

  10. #35
    Drupaler bronze trophy greg.harvey's Avatar
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    Thanks for dropping me in it! Next time Abbott, next time!

  11. #36
    SitePoint Wizard Ian Glass's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Bill Posters
    Originally posted by randem
    Kinda like running a department store, and choosing who is allowed to shop there, right? No handicapped access, and only your particular race is allowed through the doors, right?
    No, nothing at all like running a department store and choosing not to allow access to the disabled and certain races.

    It's a lot closer to barring people you know only want to window shop or people who want your service for free.
    Actually, that analogy holds more water than you gave it credit for, Bill--it is very much an accessibility issue!

    While pop-up windows are at most annoying to us, to many people, especially the retarded or those new to the ways of the web, they can be more than disorienting and very confusing, effectively impairing their ability to use the site. Anyone who uses a screen magnifier would probably disable pop-ups, too. Someone who uses an older system or has photosensitive epilepsy might disable both graphics and scripting because for the one it's too costly of system resources and for the other, reckless use of these technologies can send them into seizures! Many people without epilepsy experience migraines and headaches in some circumstances--as does my mom. Someone concerned about security may also want to disable scripting (someone hypersensitive'll probably disable cookies too--never got that one, though ;-).

    There are many legitimate reasons to disable scripting, pop-up windows or graphics that are fully discounted when you (we as an industry) describe all people who disable these optional technologies as idle loiterers. Banning such users is, in fact, analogous to denying access to the disabled.

    Someone mentioned the bandwidth issue (forgive me for forgetting whom :-), but that point begs the question: how much bandwidth is expended serving graphic ads that people simply don't want? I'd venture a guess that it's greater than serving a simple content page alone. Of course, that's just speculation on my part and I'd be interested in some data on it, if anyone has any.

    In any event, there are certainty less contemptuous ways to make a buck--even in advertising.

    ~~Ian

  12. #37
    morphine for a wooden leg randem's Avatar
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    Someone mentioned the bandwidth issue (forgive me for forgetting whom :-), but that point begs the question: how much bandwidth is expended serving graphic ads that people simply don't want? I'd venture a guess that it's greater than serving a simple content page alone. Of course, that's just speculation on my part and I'd be interested in some data on it, if anyone has any.
    Using arbitrary numbers, of course... we could say that at 800x600 resolution, 4k of text is well over 2 screens-full of text. However, by typical design standards, a 4k graphic is generally only enough for one navigational element (link).

    By similar measure, an average site wastes as much as 50k on navigation (combined, link images plus rollover images)... which is (using the above) as much as 25 screens-full of data! But we're talking about popups and flashing banners here, not nav, so how about this:

    Go to www.about.com and let the popup window open. The one I just got pulled up a full web page advertisement (8.5kb), which loaded over 50 images, ranging in size up to 10kb!!! When it's all said and done, it loaded a total of 236 kb (as measured by saving that window as "web page complete" into a new folder and checking the "size on disk" of said folder.

    So there you go. A single popup window ate up 236kb of my bandwidth, which by the above measure could have been replaced by over 100 screens full of informative data, and by my off-the-cuff calculations is over 40 seconds wait on dialup modem.
    Last edited by randem; Aug 9, 2002 at 10:55.
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  13. #38
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    Personally i think the bandwidth issue has far more to do with the person running the site (and spending there hard
    earned money on maintaining that bandwidth) than it does with the visitor.

    Code:
    Someone mentioned the bandwidth issue (forgive me for forgetting whom :-), but that point begs the question: how 
    much bandwidth is expended serving graphic ads that people simply don't want? I'd venture a guess that it's greater 
    than serving a simple content page alone. Of course, that's just speculation on my part and I'd be interested in some 
    data on it, if anyone has any.
    As a web designer i want to setup a site to be a lean as possible (design not withstanding) however in the vast majority
    of cases banners provided by affiliate sites / CPM paying advertisers on my content site below will come in as they
    do - i can recommend a maximum size (12k) but will not enforce it if there not running from my server.

    As far as popup's / popunder's goes i never use them for advertising - im not prepared to loss xx% of visitors just
    to squeeze another 10% of revenue out.
    Last edited by Chas; Aug 11, 2002 at 09:35.

  14. #39
    SitePoint Wizard Ian Glass's Avatar
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    Any more thoughts on this? I think this is a pretty interesting discussion, myself. :-)

    Do people who block invasive ads (and the software that makes that blocking possible) have a right to do so? Should they be blocked from viewing the content those ads support?

    ~~Ian

  15. #40
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    I think they have the same right to block invasive ads as you have to leave the room and get a snack or hit the mute button when a commercial comes on TV. A webmaster can block a person from the site for doing that, but I think it's a dumb move, personally. It's time to face the fact that pop-ups have annoyed people to the max and are now essentially ruined as an advertising medium and move on from there.

  16. #41
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    But remember it's not just popups. All images from a domain can be blocked. So if they block your ad server, you're doomed.

    Say you get 100 Mozilla visitors. They block your ads. Each of them visit 10 pages every day. That's 30,000 impressions lost there straight away.

  17. #42
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    Right..yet another argument for text ads.

  18. #43
    Drupaler bronze trophy greg.harvey's Avatar
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    Just looking back up the thread a little to the bandwidth point -- if you're using a third party to place banners on your site, surely it's their bandwidth rather than yours that's affected, since a lot of these banners load from the ads server into a space you've left for them, don't they?



    Not that it bothers me -- I don't tend to get involved with this kind of thing -- or at least, I only get asked to create banners to go on other sites every now and again.

    G

  19. #44
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    Ads wouldn't be so bad if they were STATIC and stayed ON TOPIC.
    This is an excellent point and one I strongly agree with, though depending on your (client's) site it may be darn near impossible to find advertising in that "market".

    A prime example would be my husband's classic car site (which I maintain, though I'm a bit of a slacker on that project right now). It would be great if the site paid for itself in advertising. It uses a fair amount of bandwidth because of the # of images. I've gone through a fair # of affiliate programs looking for something that would cater to the visitor's interests, afterall they're far more likely to buy/click if it's something I already know they like. ;-) Commission Junction has some interesting looking programs currently, so maybe we'll go with them.

    That said, while I might not *like* a user turning off my ads (which *could* be paying for the site), it's a consumer choice, made easier by new technology. We could create a members only site, but that would incur additional fees (credit card processing, etc). We can ask for donations, charge a fee for adding your car to the gallery, sell t-shirts, etc. Or we can use text ads and use it as an opportunity to let people know about *my* services, which we do.

    A note on the Members-only, it might work, seeing as how most men/women into these cars as much as my husband find it more addictive than porn. More expensive too, I might add.

    Diana

  20. #45
    SitePoint Zealot t0m|ta's Avatar
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    A user point of view

    Many interesting things have been said in this thread, as a matter of fact i'm going to print it and read it carefully at home.

    As a user, I have never disabled popups, but I hate them for good reasons:

    My pc crashes completely if i get too many of them (I cannot afford the latests technologies, nor spend a thounsand pounds on a pc .

    With blinking and flahsy ads I don't get seizures, but I get sick, I have to turn of the pc and get fresh water.

    It's been said that it's not an accesibility problem, but at least for me it is, and a big one.

    Your screen gets full of this horrible litle windows. And some times they are not little, the are full screen, or the title bar is outside the screen ¿what can you do if you havent heard about ALT+F4? ¿And what about this new ads than go over content moving around the page with nowhere to close them and don't let you read?

    And what's worse most of this information is not at all relevant at all for me. There are more honest ways to sell. I just don't see the point in converting the potential clients experience in a nightmare. That's how trademarks want to be remembered? As an intrusion? As that little thing that crashed their pc or slowed down their conection?

    Maybe some sites will barr me because I dont want to look at their popups. I don´t care. If that is the way the do business i just do not want any business with them :-) I like honest people :-)

  21. #46
    ********* Genius Mike's Avatar
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    The big, flashing ads. I hate them! If I see a big flashing ad, I drag the url of it into my "ad garbage bin", and any image served by it or its parent directory aren't loaded. I've even stopped visiting sites completely due to flashing ads. Its just like a motion sensitive shotgun. I surf on in and **BAM**, I'm right out the door again
    Mike
    It's not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me.


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