Monday, March 10, 2008

When Newspaper Website Advertisements Go Terribly, Terribly Wrong

For a moment, I thought I had gone to the wrong news website. You know -- a prank. A placeholder. A misplaced letter, sending me to an alternate website that was coated with tiled advertisements:

But alas, with a more careful eye, my brain soon dissected what was before me -- the front page of, the portal for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News.

If I look closer, I can find the news content hidden in between the garish blue ads down each side of the page, on top of the featured story (which rolled-out on first load) and about 20 percent of what's left of the "above-the-fold" space, even on 1280 by 800 resolution.

If I can simply put this visual in terms of the epic battle between editorial and business, it becomes clear to me that business, indeed, won.

For a site that I guarantee has more eyeballs than both printed publications combined, I believe that this is not how we should monetize newspapers on the Internet. (And if you're wondering, yes, the ads permeated the front page of each publication, too.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just try finding today's news on the Kansas City Star's site. Good paper, messy site.