Bits from Bill

Technology thoughts leaking from the brain of "Bill Pytlovany"

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Ads in AOL Email

Last week I wrote how AOL will never get credit for its contribution to internet world. While I spent over 5 years putting in my blood and sweat, and my family still have a financial interest in the company, I’m not shy to point out when AOL is just plain stupid.

When I first heard reports about AOL including ads in their Email I panicked thinking that AOL might be including ads in the Emails I send to others. Thankfully, that isn’t the scenario. If they do that it will be the time I give up my BillP screen name that I’ve had for 20 years. Instead, they include a large add on the bottom of the Email form used when AOL members read their mail.

AOL Email form with advertising

I’m embarrassed to say, I never even noticed the ads when they first started to appear. I was so use to advertising taking up part of the screen.

You’d think I really wouldn’t care, but I do. The Email screen has been a sacred and a source of conflict between developers at AOL and the marketing department. At one time, a large part of the development team threatened to quit if advertisements were included on the screen used to read Emails. The suits have finally won and I don’t like what it means.

There’s yet another reason I hate to see advertising in Email. The ads are flash based and not always prepared correctly. At least three times a day I get security alerts like the one below.

Macromedia Security Alert on AOL

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I refused to put up with flashing banner ads in aol email so I got thunderbird but also found ways to block them. One go to aol sign on and sign off screen, help, about aol, press control d and uninstall viewpoint. That got rid of it for awhile. Two, set internet explorer to work offline and ads are gone.

10:02 PM  

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