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#1 Edited by Guttyg (38 posts) -

I recently had to stop paying for my yearly subscription and giant bomb has just become a mass of ads and other unwanted links to paid websites. It's made a once decent website into something like IGN, which makes me feel that the core values of giant bomb have been swallowed by corporate greed. Waiting for ads to load constantly crashes Edge on my xbone, iPad and laptop, I just feel really disappointed in what the site has become after being a gold member for so many years. It feels like greed has taken over.

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#2 Posted by Rorie (4128 posts) -

@guttyg: If you ever see an ad that you feel is malicious (auto-linking to the app store, fishy-looking stuff that pushes download links, etc.), please do take a screenshot of it and send to support at giantbomb.com and I can file an ad disruption for that.

As far as "greed" goes, we are a business, and a fairly unique one at that in terms of the amount of video bandwidth we serve up each month. We need revenue to pay those bills, and advertising is obviously going to be part of that equation for people who aren't Premium.

Staff
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#3 Edited by liquiddragon (1699 posts) -

Well I think they gave up a lot of ad control in the CBSi buyout which is to be expected. I can't hate on that, I'm happy that a lot of people's jobs are a bit more secure.

I do wish someone at GB would keep an eye on the non-premium experience tho. I did Premium for a year and now that it expired, it's pretty clear the sites gotten much worse about bad ads. I've reported about malicious ads many many times over the years and it doesn't seem to be getting addressed. I obviously don't know how it all works but from this end, it just looks like you're playing whack-a-mole.

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#4 Posted by BigSocrates (1411 posts) -

I am premium but I do not log in at work so I see the non-premium site regularly.

It isn't that bad for me. I don't find the ads super intrusive or horrible.

Maybe it is just that I have a higher tolerance for that kind of thing but I don't think it is objectively terrible as such things go.

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#5 Edited by mordukai (8481 posts) -

@guttyg: Just use adblock. Seems to be doing the job for me. I also don't use the site on any mobile or pad device so that might also contribute to me not being bothered by ads.

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#6 Posted by WillyOD (94 posts) -

Yeah, it's sometimes a shock what this site (and some others) looks like without Adblock (and Premiumship).

I hope that from time to time (DAILY) you check out how GB looks like without Adblock and logging in as a premium member.

Also, the new video player doesn't support resume? Or it's not working properly. The old video player ruled. I could continue watching where I left off from a toilet or from space.

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#7 Posted by WillyOD (94 posts) -

Also, if your sponsors weren't so US-centric I'm sure you'd make more money from podcasts. I know it's not up to you but perhaps you should forward this to your sponsors. I understand that some things (like consumables) are impossible to ship to foreign countries, but razors, body products etc . should be shippable to Europe.

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#8 Posted by Guttyg (38 posts) -

Its just a real shame IMO, that a really inclusive site has become an ad fest. Ive always followed Jeff since the early days. After the he got fired from Gamespot i was gutted. Its a shame that they cant supply a better experience for a non paying subscriber. Ive paid for the last 6 years and was shocked to see the change when i had to stop my gold membership.

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#9 Posted by PDXSonic (385 posts) -

@willyod: It is very likely they have metrics to determine where they are getting the majority of their downloads/listens from. And I bet there is a good chance that the amount from the US is greater than the rest of the world combined.

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#11 Posted by Leeftie (15 posts) -

@rorie said:

As far as "greed" goes, we are a business, and a fairly unique one at that in terms of the amount of video bandwidth we serve up each month. We need revenue to pay those bills, and advertising is obviously going to be part of that equation for people who aren't Premium.

I don't agree with what Rorie says, about the high video bandwith served to non premium members. All non premium videos are being uploaded to youtube to my knowledge so you can just serve files from there. The ads of non premium giantbomb are very untasteful and diminish the user experience. A new user might look at it and won't infer the edgy and chill attitude that giantbomb has towards games, because it seems to support ads that are definitely not cool, like awful fake news stuff and mobile waste of time and money nightmares inbetween the news items. I guess websites will figure out over time how to handle ads. Until then, there is the essential plugin to block ads.

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#12 Edited by kcin (805 posts) -

@guttyg said:

Its just a real shame IMO, that a really inclusive site has become an ad fest. Ive always followed Jeff since the early days. After the he got fired from Gamespot i was gutted. Its a shame that they cant supply a better experience for a non paying subscriber. Ive paid for the last 6 years and was shocked to see the change when i had to stop my gold membership.

"The change"? You simply weren't visiting the site without being logged in if you feel like there has been some massive change. This is what websites look like everywhere on the entire internet. Bemoaning the ads is not only absurdly idealistic, but shockingly naive. There's nothing new or particularly bad about Giant Bomb's ads, you just didn't know they were there, and now you're back to supporting GB the way anyone who doesn't pay for a subscription does: by seeing ads. Good luck, I pray you are able to find the constitution necessary to handle this bizarre and terrifying new world you've entered, where websites have ads.

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#13 Edited by Guttyg (38 posts) -

Its not naive its my opinion. My point is that the obtrusive advertising content is ruining the enjoyment of GB.

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#14 Posted by kcin (805 posts) -

@guttyg: You are complaining about ads on the internet. Your opinion is founded in a fundamental misunderstanding of how website monetization operates. You didn't even know the website had ads the way it does for six whole years, apparently wholly unaware of exactly what you were paying for: the luxury of not seeing ads. You also exhibit the knowledge of someone who just doesn't visit much on the internet, if you feel that Giant Bomb's advertising model is especially egregious. By algorithmic logic and implementation, it is virtually identical to hundreds of other websites. That's the definition of naive.

If the advertising is ruining your enjoyment of the site, you're free to pay for a subscription again dude, but I don't know how else to tell you that advertising is the way of the world wide web, and Giant Bomb is not a particularly awful offender, it's just another unwilling participant. Jeff has spoken extensively about the advertising model, and not only how much it sucks, but how without subscriptions, GB would probably not exist in the capacity that it does. Advertisements supply threadbare survival on the internet. Asking them to do something about it is to be completely unaware of how the internet works these days.

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#15 Posted by Hopuk (26 posts) -

The ads you see depend on your location and luck, which makes it hard for others to really comment as they might have significantly more tame ads. For me GB has thankfully had fairly decent ads, nothing on the level of porn sites for example. Many of those are really annoying to browse without an adblock or paying for the ad free membership.

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#16 Edited by Guttyg (38 posts) -

Again I'm expressing my opinion. Good talk though Duders....

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#17 Posted by w00master (67 posts) -

So get a subscription. Simple.

Websites cannot stay alive unless they either: 1.) Serve Ads 2.) Subscriptions.

Pick one.

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#18 Posted by w00master (67 posts) -

Which you have 100% right to do so. However, you're asking a question that's actually incredibly complex. Do I like ads? Heck no, but so many sites cannot survive without them. They are the economy (for the most part) of the online industry. Like Rorie said, if there's a particular intrusive ad, then report it. It's to GB's benefit that they fix it in a rapid fashion. Else, just do what I do, and get a subscription. You won't see a single ad again.

@guttyg said:

Again I'm expressing my opinion. Good talk though Duders....

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#19 Posted by BFZ (62 posts) -

Out of curiosity I decided to see what the OP was talking about. I'm so used to not seeing ads on the site I figured it would be jarring if nothing else. Logged out and disabled ad-block (which seemed to keep all the ads at bay anyway fyi) and was greeted with what seemed to be your typical target based ads based off of your website search/browse history.

Nothing overly obtrusive, big splash ad for ARK on the main page with your typical "YOU WON"T BELIEVE WHAT THEY LOOK LIKE NOW!!" garbage waaaay down on the bottom of the page.

I'd actually say that there were less ads then I'm used to seeing, especially when compared to mobile sites. I'd recommend to the OP to get a good ad-blocker if a subscription is not an option.

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#20 Edited by MezZa (2676 posts) -

@guttyg said:

Again I'm expressing my opinion. Good talk though Duders....

There's nothing wrong with that, and no one is attacking you for having an opinion on it. When you express an opinion that you want something to be different, people will naturally try to inform you and help you understand why what you want isn't possible. If your response to that is to ignore what they say and respond with, "well it's my opinion", why start the discussion in the first place? Best course of action is to do as Rorie says and let them know about any particularly malicious ads, or pay a subscription to remove them. There's not much else to talk about other than that unless you find a way to change the structure of the standard website revenue model and want to share it with people. Also, in the future, starting things off a little less negative like not implying the site creators are lost in greed for trying to make a living will lead to a better discussion.

Online
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#21 Posted by The_Last_Starfighter (439 posts) -

@mezza said:

@guttyg said:

Again I'm expressing my opinion. Good talk though Duders....

There's nothing wrong with that, and no one is attacking you for having an opinion on it. When you express an opinion that you want something to be different, people will naturally try to inform you and help you understand as to why what you want isn't possible. If your response to that is going to ignore what the say and respond with, "well it's my opinion", why start the discussion in the first place? Best course of action is to do as Rorie says and let them know about any particularly malicious ads. There's not much else to talk about other than that unless you find a way to change the structure of the standard website revenue model and want to share it with people. Also, in the future, starting things off a little less negative like not implying the site creators are lost in greed for trying to make a living will lead to a better discussion.

Well said.

I hope at some point schools teach their students how to engage in proper discourse on the internet as so many of us (myself included) miss the mark far too often. Great points MezZa, I'll keep those in mind the next time something pisses me off on the internet :)

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#22 Posted by Magmamud (853 posts) -

I don't mind the ads as long as they are reasonable. Obviously I would prefer if they are related to the site (games,tech). And I think generally this site makes good on that. I just logged out to check and I mostly got game related ads for MapleStory, Archeage and some for computer hardware sites.

Sometimes I have seen weird ads pop up and with no option available to report them which can be annoying, but mostly it's been fine. But just get adblocker if you don't want the ads.

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#23 Posted by Guttyg (38 posts) -

Obviously there is an issue so its good to have the discussion. Whether it will make any difference or not.

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#24 Posted by castermhief117 (818 posts) -

Just watch everything on youtube and/or install uBlock.

/thread

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#26 Edited by Rorie (4128 posts) -

@hunkulese said:

@guttyg: So you're of them opinion that what they're doing should be a charity and they're greedy to try and run a business that has costs to cover and salaries to pay?

It's pretty simple. They're providing you a service that you enjoy and should pay for. You can either pay them directly or pay them through ad revenue. [edited]

Let's not go down the path of calling people names if they choose to use browser addons; thanks.

Staff
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#27 Posted by SSully (5279 posts) -

@guttyg said:

Again I'm expressing my opinion. Good talk though Duders....

From what I am seeing, so is everyone else.

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#28 Posted by Hunkulese (4009 posts) -

@rorie: If you don't care, maybe he's right and you should just get rid of ads.

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#29 Edited by Rorie (4128 posts) -

@hunkulese said:

@rorie: If you don't care, maybe he's right and you should just get rid of ads.

I don't not care, I just don't want people calling each other names. There's no need for it. Don't put words in my mouth.

Staff
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#30 Posted by SkullPanda1 (1502 posts) -

I hated the ads on Forbes so I dont go there anymore. I didnt like the ads here so i pay for premium access.

Sorry you're feeling put out, but remember they gotta eat too.

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#31 Edited by Hunkulese (4009 posts) -

@rorie: Well you did change my post to make it seem like I'm suggesting an ad blocker.

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#32 Edited by Rorie (4128 posts) -

@hunkulese said:

@rorie: Well you did change my post to make it seem like I'm suggesting an ad blocker.

You're right, it was a bad edit that changed the way that sentence read. I just deleted the whole sentence.

Staff
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#33 Posted by ripelivejam (10903 posts) -

i think when people say they want less intrusive ads, what they really mean is they want no ads at all. nothing's free; this site and what the guys do definitely shouldn't be.

tenpted to try it out for a bit with ads; i have a feeling it's being exaggerated.

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#34 Posted by ev77 (40 posts) -

I think we've long passed the point of discussion on ads. There is nothing wrong with using an adblocker for a whole list of reasons you can easily lookup in 2 seconds on google. If companies really thought you were costing them by viewing their site w/o ads they could easily just block you from the site (some sites do); it's just as much their choice as it is yours to decide to block ads. I use both an adblocker and a java-script blocker because I don't want to deal with it. I also don't mind subscribing to sites I visit regularly to support them (like Giantbomb).

If you feel bad about it just block ads here and watch all the videos on youtube to support them there. Perhaps they get residuals from iTune downloads of their podcast and the commercials they have in them and so you can do that as well. But honestly it is almost 2017 and there is no reason to feel bad about blocking ads; companies have had plenty of years to get their shit together and they didn't.

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#35 Edited by kcin (805 posts) -

@guttyg said:

Obviously there is an issue so its good to have the discussion. Whether it will make any difference or not.

The 'problem' is the ad model itself, not how many there are on Giant Bomb. Declaring this website "basically unusable" is hyperbole well beyond truth, and you know that. Here you are, using it. You just want there to be no ads. Fine. Pay for a subscription. This discussion is utterly valueless if your only input is that ads suck. Yeah dude, we know. Giant Bomb knows. What's your point?

This is coming from someone who happily used GB every day for a year before deciding to pay for a subscription, and who still regularly views the site while logged off at work.

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#36 Posted by MikeFerrari7 (391 posts) -

Dude, these guys put out great, unique content that I never have to second guess. Not to trash talk, but I feel like sites like IGN have really gone downhill and lost their valuable members that put out decent articles and reviews. Even Gamespot I feel took a bit of a nosedive. I have been premium for years, only reason I'm not right now is because I need to get my new debit card so I can update billing. Just deal with the ads, they are not a big deal, and you're helping the only, or at least one of the few, gaming websites worth a damn. I go to sites for content, not the aesthetics, and watching an ad or listening to one is a small price to pay for helping these dudes out. But to each their own.

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#37 Posted by Quipido (1215 posts) -

leaving the discussion about "morals" aside, if the ads are actually crashing browsers on devices like tablets or even a console, that is definetely a problem and it's good that the original poster pointed that out! On those devices you have no option to alter the experience and sounds like it literally renders the site unusable for him.

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#39 Posted by CrazyBagMan (1208 posts) -
No Caption Provided

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#40 Posted by Rorie (4128 posts) -

Let's try to leave sarcastic responses out of this, if we can. I'm happy to hear people's opinions about the website and our ads, so I don't want to feel like anyone's trying to squelch anyone else's statements. It's great that many of you are fine with our ad displays but I'd always like to hear more from people who have issues with it. I'd just say that specific suggestions, e.g. "This ad module on this page pushes the information below it too far down for me to see easily," or "I saw an ad that auto-played sound and here's a screenshot" are easier for me to work with than "there are too many ads on the site!" That's a lot tougher of a suggestion for me to do something about than stuff that's specific.

Staff
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#41 Posted by whitegreyblack (1510 posts) -

Occasionally, the worst ads served up to you by the modern internet ad mechanism are fueled by your own sordid (or not) browsing history. Sometimes when I see people complain about being served up gross ads, I wonder what they've been doing on the bad ol' Interwebs. No judgement!

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#42 Posted by Xeiphyer (5837 posts) -

You pay for the content with a premium membership or by viewing ads. If you don't want one you get the other. Not sure what you're expecting... websites ain't free.

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#43 Posted by Magmamud (853 posts) -

@whitegreyblack: I have never gotten any gross ads pop up on here, but I have definitely gotten odd ones. Like recently in the middle of the news section a really large clickable picture of a smiling couple popped up. No text just a picture. Like what even is that, that's not even advertising anything.

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#44 Edited by troll93 (506 posts) -

I sometime would visit the website on my phone without being lodged in (company phone meaning saving cookies is not super easy), and anytime I tried to do anything, the site pushed those terrible mobile ads that open another page in your browser, pop up all kinds of crap when you try and close it and are awful. I have since installed a proper ad blocker, and can't blame anyone else from using them on mobile if they are getting the same experience.

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#45 Edited by fnrslvr (409 posts) -

I've been using Giant Bomb with Adblock Plus for a while now. Originally I was broke and using a relatively weak laptop, and the ads displayed here at the time were often Flash-based and apparently poorly optimized and would grind my laptop to almost a standstill. In recent months I've had enough money to build a beast of a Skylake/Pascal desktop, but it didn't cross my mind that I was still running an ad blocker until I perused this thread. That said, modern web browsers are getting to be worryingly inefficient and leaky, so I've found that even running my beast some of these ads can get to be a bit much. Or maybe the problem is my mediocre internet connection, which is a problem that only the Australian government can solve.

It should be noted that ad blockers are often set to only block out the most obnoxious and resource-intensive of ads by default, which might be why I forgot I had it running: I still see ads on a lot of sites. (Are the "From the web" links down the bottom of this very page ads? The blocker lets those through.) Hell, some privacy setting somewhere or other that I tripped when I upgraded things or got my new phone might've slipped those ad systems into "remind you of all the shit you were perusing on some website in the hopes that you'll decide to purchase it after all" mode, which seems to work, since I often end up actually clicking those ads, which is certainly a first. I guess my point is, ads can be ineffective or (rarely) effective, and they can be benign or malignant, and I think those two axes are independent, if not anti-correlated. Whoever's in charge of the ads here might want to think about running the kind of benign ads that peoples' ad blockers are often configured to let through.

Or not, I don't know. Maybe trying to run ads that consistently don't get blocked by the less aggressive adblock settings is a hopeless shitfight.

That said, I just tripped over some money that I can afford to part with for the first time in a good long time, and I enjoy the time I spend on Giant Bomb, so I'm gonna go get me one of those shiny premium badges.

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#46 Edited by RonnieBarzel (371 posts) -

@bigsocrates said:

I am premium but I do not log in at work so I see the non-premium site regularly.

It isn't that bad for me. I don't find the ads super intrusive or horrible.

Maybe it is just that I have a higher tolerance for that kind of thing but I don't think it is objectively terrible as such things go.

My story is almost exactly the same as yours. Unless I'm wanting to watch a Premium video or add a comment below a video, I rarely log in to Giant Bomb so I'm familiar with the non-membership version of the site. Like you, I don't really have a problem with the difference between the two.

EDIT: For completion's sake, I should add that both at home and work, I'm running the latest iteration of Chrome on Mac.

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#47 Edited by skurk (66 posts) -

To see if there was anything to fuss about, I just logged out.

The ads are fine.

At the top I got an investment ad with a caricature of Trump, and a local theatre ad above the upcoming videos box. In between the articles I got one ad for a mobile game.
At the bottom were 4 of those "10 best ways to watch photos of celebrities eating McDonalds" fake articles or whatever.

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#48 Posted by Bill_P (254 posts) -
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#49 Posted by DirtyRandy (90 posts) -

It's crazy how rude and condescending some of the responses in this thread are.

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#50 Edited by ripelivejam (10903 posts) -

@dirtyrandy: well i do feel the OP was being a little over the top dramatic about their situation. They didn't provide too many specifics on in what ways the advertising was souring their experience. Not that they aren't having a legit problem with it, it could have just been phrased quite a bit better and more constructively.

i'm guessing if you browse for a while with ads on you might see some targeted ads that are more intrusive.