BoSacks Readers Speak Out: On IAB's Rothenberg, Ad Blocking, Native Ads & more

By Bob Sacks on February 15, 2016

Re: BoSacks Speaks Out: - IAB's Rothenberg Blasts Adblock-Plus

Many thanks for sending Rothenberg's IAB speech.  What gas!  It's been a long time since I've read anything that was so wrong to begin with and then got worse.  I've never understood the kerfuffle over ad blockers... but now I'm thinking that if this fellow hates them so much I should probably get one. (Submitted by a Publisher and Official BoSacks Cub Reporter) 

Re: BoSacks Speaks Out: - IAB's Rothenberg Blasts Adblock-Plus

How about freedom of privacy? I'd think that would include the freedom to go onto the Internet without being stalked. (Submitted by a Writer)  

Re: BoSacks Speaks Out: - IAB's Rothenberg Blasts Adblock-Plus

Bo, there are so many news and magazine sites i've stopped going to because videos start playing automatically or windows start opening in my browser. there are many sites that have so much multimedia going on that browser caches fill and never load properly or degrade the site performance. it's ugly. so guess what? whenever i learn of something of interest in an e-newsletter or in a news search, and i see that it links to a site that does that, i look for that topic elsewhere. (Submitted by an Industry Analysist)


Re: BoSacks Speaks Out: - IAB's Rothenberg Blasts Adblock-Plus

Mr. Rothenberg is wrong. No one wants to see ads. They are intrusive and unwanted. And, I would hope that the companies that are developing Ad Blockers are pro-profit. (Submitted by a printer)

RE: BoSacks Speaks Out: Steering the "New World Digital Order"

It's amazing how much we've written years ago is still relevant. It has nothing to do with being insightful or prescient. It's just that--despite incredible changes--the core truths remain. (Submitted by a writer)  

RE: BoSacks Speaks Out: Steering the "New World Digital Order"

don't feel bad bo -- recycling your article was a good idea. we already do it with our executives, and the executives do it with their strategies, so why not do it with a column? (Submitted by an Industry pundit)  

Re: BoSacks Speaks Out: Ad Blocking is Our Reward for Abusing Reader Trust

I agree with you 100%, Bo. I resisted AdBlocking until late last year, because, like all of us, I understand the need for online ad revenue, especially for those publishers whose print revenue has either declined or disappeared.  

But the kicker for me was autoplay video ads, popping up in the middle of text blocks, with volume autoset to the highest level. Often those video ads had no volume control, or no controls AT ALL--forcing me to sit through a 30-second spot at high volume. If this abuse bothered me, imagine what it does to people with no connection to the online advertising community. Yes, we, online publishers, are creating a monster, and if we are burned at the stake, it is our own fault. Asking me to disable AdBlock (as many sites do with a banner display) makes me swear at the screen as if they were Climate Change deniers. (Submitted by a media Director)  

Re: BoSacks Speaks Out: Ad Blocking is Our Reward for Abusing Reader Trust 

AMEN brother AMEN (Submitted by an Ad man)  

RE: Publishers & Advertisers Must Regulate Native Ads - Or Else Be Stifled by FTC

The phrase "working with publishers, agencies, and brand marketers to find a mutually agreeable solution" is an interesting one. It leaves consumers completely out of the picture and ignores that there may be a public interest in what companies do. And that's why self-regulation so often fails, as the concept is usually one of avoiding responsibility and finding ways for companies to do what they want without impediment. (Submitted by a freelance writer)  

RE: Magazine Production

Bob, inevitable result of cost cutting, and retracting circulation and pagination, with the new managers or private equity owners having no idea of the process, need of supervision of suppliers, or even what Production people (used to) do.  I am so glad I was there for the best of days (growth of Quad from a single small plant in Pewaukee to the company they are today, for example) when magazines were coining money (Time in 1983) and just about anything seemed possible. (Submitted by a former Director of MFG and DST) 

RE: Newsstand - Maybe We Should Rephrase The Question

Wasn't it Tim Robbins who made popular the notion, You only get the answers to the question you ask, so be sure to task the right question!  Indeed. So ...  

What if there were five times as many places one could buy a magazine (not every magazine, but a magazine)?  

What if we made the newsstand inconvenient?  Like only one in a community instead of every line at the grocery?  

What if newsstands were a drive-through?   

What if magazines were sold in pairs of titles rather than one at a time at retail?  

How can we enhance the value of the single copy?  

What if single copies were sold and distributed monthly to people who meet for social reasons already?   

What if a fresh People magazine went home with every customer at a hair salon?  

What if a fresh copy of Real Simple went home with everyone who spent $50 at Home Depot the first week of every month? 

What if newsstands become emporiums that sold what was advertised in the magazine(s) associated with the emporium?  

Just asking ... (Submitted by an Industry analysist)


RE: BoSacks Speaks Out: The Problem With Journalism Is You Need an Audience

Bo,  Nolan nails it. I've made a career out of figuring out how to turn good information into good business (for profit and non-profit, the latter being a tax status for a type of business).  I don't see a strictly economic model for genuinely good civic information, let alone what once passed for good information. The industry, as it is currently economically structured, is oriented toward audience numbers and strength of interest.  The product is bad and getting worse. Trump is a beneficiary: . 

But journalism is not only an economic factor.  It is a political factor.  Good journalism may find support in a political economic model that delivers votes not profits.  There are developing political-economic enterprise models that will support good journalism through a network of professional journalists and political activists.  

Conventional "good" journalists may not like the discipline of these emerging models.  Their work will be increasingly subject to scrutiny by specialists and overall guidance by active citizens willing to pay a high price to be part of the network producing trustworthy civic information.  However the days of classified advertising supported indulgence are gone for good and what is good journalism will have to change. (Submitted by a Publisher)

By Bob Sacks| February 15, 2016

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Bob Sacks

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