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You're losing us

Posted by hosenemesis SoCal Sunset 19 USDA (My Page) on
Sat, Dec 7, 13 at 0:13

Dear Tamara,
As you know, I am a long-time member of Gardenweb and a regular poster. GW makes some very bad decisions regarding these forums, and I'm sure you know that from the declining membership and visits to most of the forums. The decision to ban any mention of Dave's Garden or links to their photo files killed the Iris Forum. Most of those people went over to the Facebook Iris Lover's page a long time ago.

The full-page pop-up ads from the last week were the dealbreaker for me. I couldn't get past the forums list page, when I did, they popped up again on the California forum page. I tried to find this forum in the list to complain, and more pop-ups prevented me from being able to scroll around and find this forum, so I gave up. I uploaded a new Adblocker Plus, and a Javascript popup blocker, but now the forums will not open for me and I cannot look at people's links. I have no interest in spending hours loading up my computer with programs so that I can visit GW, so I will leave. wcgypsy had the same experience and response over on the CA Forum. Please tell the owners they are being short-sighted. I know money must be made, but if the site is annoying to use and there are much better alternatives on the internet we will leave.
You may email me if the situation changes and the popups are discontinued, and I will happily return.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: You're losing us

Yes. The popups in the middle of the page while I am reading, are a definite hassle and taking the fun out. You are going to run yourself out of business trying to make money in that way. If funds are a problem, you should offer options and incentives , perhaps membership levels with different functions for paid and unpaid membership. Free viewing forums but no posts without a paid, paid allowing posts, get rid of the blasted popups altogether

RE: You're losing us

The frustration would be mitigated by adding some basic functions and formatting to GW that all similar forums have had for the past decade. If improvements were made available because of/in conjunction with increased ads, it would be more understandable, a fair trade. It's a shame that the best forum for garden advice is also that with the most intrusive ads, and is not also the most reliable, well-formatted, and pleasurable to visit.

The ads attached to people's words in their posts are an extremely intrusive form, confusing to readers who may think they were put there intentionally by the author, or that they are intended to be relevant to the response being offered. This negates GW's usefulness and perceived reliability in general, and makes GW look cheap and desperate, of possibly questionable legitimacy.

Does not the hard separation from ivillage create a hardship in the form of unnecessary competition and failure to publicize for GW? Why are there separate but completely useless garden forums in the 'regular' part if ivillage (where GW names/passwords don't work?)

The flash player ads cause everything to respond so slowly that I have to make sure it is disabled before using GW. I've read many complaints about this and the other intrusive ads causing people to not want to visit this site anymore.

It just seems like anything is tried, to see what sticks, instead of using all of the intrusions and cookies to tailor the ads more closely to the readers. I still see plenty of ads but they are never for anything I want to buy. With the number of words I type per day on average at GW, current marketing software could easily find ads that would be much more tempting.

As someone who benefits from the free use of this site, I'd like to be *able* to respond more effectively to the ads. I'm not fat or single, or will ever use a Swiffer. After years of NOT clicking the ads, why keep showing the same ones to me?

The ability to block popups is well-established, way old news in terms of the internet, and should be a setting in most browsers and/or firewalls, nothing extra needed. Extremely common across all avenues of the internet, nothing about popups on this site is unusual. Since they are so easy to block, I love that kind of ad, I have it blocked and am not bothered. But since they are so easy to block, it's obvious why other methods are being sought and employed.

I am not leaving GW, and share my thoughts because I think GW could be better as does the person who started this discussion. If I didn't care, I wouldn't have bothered to type this. I have also been using GW for a long time, since '99 as a lurker & under several 'lost' names as I've moved around since. Sorry, Renee.

RE: You're losing us

What platform(s) are you using when you see ads? I don't see any.

RE: You're losing us

I know that we used to have issues with popups on Internat Explorer and even Firefox, but I don't seem to have as many issues with Google Chrome.

I've also installed Ad-blocker in the past.

RE: You're losing us

A flashplayer ad floating on top of message preview page is really overkill. Between preview & submit, I'm shopping? Suggestions are usually not acknowledged in any way, though this forum exists, also off-putting.

RE: You're losing us

I had not been getting pop-ups until this morning. They are REALLY annoying things!! If they don't go away asap, I will. Such ads are a really dumb thing to put up on a site.

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