Give Readers a Choice on RSS Ads

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Well I didn’t get much of an on topic response to my question of whether readers would be bothered by ads in an RSS feed, but I did get into a nice chat about hosting at home verse with a service. Apparently Robb Allen has enough computers at home to supply a third-world country. Think about it Robb? They can really use it. ;)

But it appears that a general backlash is brewing against the idea. It’s the battle between the Utopian view of RSS and market pressures. Personally, if a feed is interesting enough to me, I’d be happy to tolerate ads as long as the ads weren’t too distracting or garish. For small fries like me, it’s a nice way to supplement the income, especially as one who has recently made the jump to be independent.

Having said that, it’s almost always a bad move to alienate readers (unless your taking a principled stance on an important issue you believe in). The best choice (for me at least) is to offer a choice (paper or plastic?). I’ll probably keep my main feed ad free, but add a separate (but equal) rss feed that would contain an occasional ad. At that point I’ll cajole, grovel, and beg subscribers to switch to the feed with ads to help a brotha out.

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2 responses

  1. Avatar for Barry Dorrans
    Barry Dorrans April 29th, 2005

    Added bonus points for Newsgator here, outlook won't download the images that are embedded ads automatically.

    (Lets hope they're more revelant than the adsense ads I'm seeing now - "Anti War Posters Choose from 10,000 posters & prints at prices hard to beat in the UK. ". Errr. Right)

  2. Avatar for Mike
    Mike June 12th, 2005

    I'm so sick of people thinking they should get something for nothing. Its not even like they having to deal with that much.. 1 ad for every three posts or so click on it if you want make it say Ad: (fill in ad here) people who think they shouldn't be bothered that one are worse then the rich snobs who think they should be served their way (atleast they are willing ot pay for it) and two should be made to work for no pay for a few days