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Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat

Acme 01 Apr 11 - 12:55 AM
JohnInKansas 01 Apr 11 - 01:09 AM
s&r 01 Apr 11 - 02:29 AM
Steve Shaw 01 Apr 11 - 05:10 AM
Arthur_itus 01 Apr 11 - 05:37 AM
johnadams 01 Apr 11 - 05:44 AM
Arthur_itus 01 Apr 11 - 05:46 AM
Mr Happy 01 Apr 11 - 06:01 AM
Steve Shaw 01 Apr 11 - 07:42 AM
GUEST 01 Apr 11 - 07:46 AM
Arthur_itus 01 Apr 11 - 08:16 AM
Arthur_itus 01 Apr 11 - 08:33 AM
treewind 01 Apr 11 - 09:08 AM
s&r 01 Apr 11 - 09:26 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 01 Apr 11 - 09:32 AM
Mr Happy 01 Apr 11 - 09:35 AM
JohnInKansas 01 Apr 11 - 09:43 AM
Acme 01 Apr 11 - 10:52 AM
GUEST,leeneia 01 Apr 11 - 11:30 AM
Arthur_itus 01 Apr 11 - 11:36 AM
JohnInKansas 01 Apr 11 - 11:39 AM
Mr Red 01 Apr 11 - 11:41 AM
Max 01 Apr 11 - 12:32 PM
Acme 01 Apr 11 - 01:35 PM
EBarnacle 01 Apr 11 - 02:37 PM
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Subject: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Acme
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 12:55 AM

For a while a few ads were fine. I clicked on them every so often to ad a few cents to the mudcat coffer. But lately, you have to beat the damned things off with a stick. What is it with all of the extra scripts and ads and place to tuck ads? I'd happily donate regularly to mudcat if we could get rid of some of this crap. Sorry Max, I know it supports the site, but it is making some visits almost intolerable.

I'm getting this message lately, as my IE makes a noise and gives me a yellow strip of text at the top of the page:

Internet Explorer has modified this page to help prevent cross-site scripting. Click here for more information. . .

Click on more info and you get this:

Internet Explorer's Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) Filter can help prevent one website from adding script code to another website. XSS Filter watches how websites interact, and when it recognizes a potential attack, it will automatically block script code from running. When this happens, you will see a message in the Information bar letting you know that the webpage was modified to help protect your privacy and security.

If the modified webpage does not work properly, try going to the home page of the website and navigating to the webpage directly. If the page still does not work correctly, contact the website's administrator.


At the bottom of the page the script says it is waiting (because IE is blocking it) and this is as much of that message I can get (it scrolls off of the page and I can't extend the browser window far enough to get it):

Waiting for https://www.facebook.com/plugins/like.php?action=like&channel_url=javascript%3B%2F&font=arial&href=http%mudcat.org%2Fthread.cfm%3threadid%3D126555%26messages%3D1%26desc%3D

Now I don't need or want a facebook plugin in my IE when I'm visiting mudcat. I know there is a mudcat group on facebook, I'm in it, and I get messages from mudcat via twitter. But I've about reached the capacity where I'm looking for a way to block out all ads, and that would mean a loss of revenue from my visits to the 'cat.

Is there some compromise we can reach with this?

Maggie (Stilly River Sage)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 01:09 AM

See The Other Thread on This for some discussion of the XSS thing.

It seems to bother only IE9 suckers users, except at the (off site) places that use XSS. I don't get the problem at the 'cat itself.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: s&r
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 02:29 AM

No problem with Firefox

Stu


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 05:10 AM

I had endless issues with IE and this forum. I started using Google Chrome and all the problems went away.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 05:37 AM

Why should people have to change their browser just to suit one website?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: johnadams
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 05:44 AM

I think in this case, 'one size doesn't fit all'.

I use Safari, Firefox or Chrome according to what site I'm looking at. Chrome doesn't seem to run video within Facebook very well so I use Safari for that and for BBC iPlayer. Firefox is like lightning when I'm browsing pdf journals. Etc.

Just use the right tool for the job.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 05:46 AM

Well this is the first problem that I have encountered and have no plans to use different browsers.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Mr Happy
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 06:01 AM

I don't like it either - why fix something that's not broke?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 07:42 AM

Thing is, like me, you don't think there's all that much wrong with IE - until you actually try something else.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 07:46 AM

Why should people have to change their browser just to suit one website?

Because that's the nature of the Internet. Get used to it.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 08:16 AM

I don't need the others GUEST


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 08:33 AM

Maybe the elfs could remove the Guest post! I thought Guest was not allowed.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: treewind
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 09:08 AM

No problems here with Chrome/SRware Iron and the MVPS hosts file which blocks lots of ads.

YT videos play OK here with Chrome or Iron on Linux and Windows XP.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: s&r
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 09:26 AM

Had no computer problems since changing to mac and firefox. Touch wood


Stu


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 09:32 AM

I use Firefox 4, adblock plus and no script saves a lot of problems and I don't get to see any adds on any site.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Mr Happy
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 09:35 AM

Don't get all this [this: anagram] on other sites


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 09:43 AM

The thread title here is misleading, as it indicates a complaint about too many ads at mudcat.

The PROBLEM being debated is the appearance of a new and slightly different XSS filter in recent updates of IE. Some persons using other browsers have also reported similar problems, but the reports, for IE and for others, are somewhat vague thus far.

Max has commented, in the other thread linked in the second post of this thread. That thread directly addresses what's being discussed here.

For information: XSS is a form of browser/server vulnerability that in some cases can allow malware to get on your computer. FaceBook, MySpace, and other "social network" sites have been primary targets for this kind of attack, as they apparently require you to use settings and add-ins that favor accessibility of the vulnerability.

XSS attacks have recently supplanted previously encountered kinds of malware, and are at present the most frequently occuring form of attack on the web. Opinions vary as to how serious the threat is, since despite its frequency most actual infections have been more annoying than destructive; but the potential for destructive attacks is real. It is likely that there is increasing need for some defenses against such attacks.

IE has included XSS defenses since IE4, but the most recent releases have apparently changed how it works (esp IE9). Browsers other than IE have, or can have, protections against this form of attack. For some, you must know that you need to download and install add-ons in order to have any defenses.

Any browser that includes XSS defenses should allow you to adjust your settings to minimize difficulties - but we haven't completely figured out just how to do that for all of the multiplicity of browsers people use here. At least that's how I interpret the recent flurry of complaints.

If you really are interested in what progress is being made, I'd suggest visiting the other thread where it's more apparent what discussion is actually helpful.

But that's just my (for now) opinion.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Acme
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 10:52 AM

No, it isn't misleading. It's about both things.

There are way too many ads here at mudcat. Every page has them tucked into every nook and cranny. They've gone from being modest little google boxes at the bottom of the page to brassy animated in-your-face stuff that takes a while to load and is what most of our waiting is about now - not the old servers in the dining room working under a big demand, but simply waiting for the servers to push out the ads for this page rotation.

I'd pay a fee to mudcat to get it without the ads. If that were possible. The thing that pushed me to starting a (somewhat redundant) thread about it was the IE message, but I've been fuming about the ads for a few weeks now.

SRS


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 11:30 AM

I'm reading this, and the only ad on my screen is a little banner (no movement or noise) from Google at the bottom of the screen.

I use IE and Windows XP.

Stilly, I think it's your computer that has a problem, not the Mudcat.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 11:36 AM

I agree Leeneia. I don't have any issues with the ads.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 11:39 AM

Stilly -

I agree that your first post hit at both problems, but the responses seemed to be taking off on just one of them - and that subject already is being discussed on the other thread.

I don't generally see any noticeable delays in loading here, but maybe I just don't notice because I occasionally visit a couple of sites where it's really a lot worse. As an example, the MSNBC news site has gotten to the point where ads pop up, expand, collapse, and wiggle and flash to the point where it's almost impossible to keep the thing you're trying to read on the screen. If you move your cursor close to one of their "helpful" hotspots you get "popup definitions" to tell you that "dog" means "a canine" and the popup conceals what you're reading until you move the cursor and it times out. And the pages won't scroll because everytime you shift by one line it has to insert three ads that push that line to the other end of the north 40 - somewhere off screen - and by the time you find it what you were reading again, the ad collapses and it goes back somewhere else, or another ad pops up and pushes your text another direction.

Max did mention in another comment thread recently that he might start giving GUESTS all the trash ads, and give members "musical" stuff only. I'm not sure whether he was teasing us, or is actually working on it; but it sounds like a good idea. My only concern is that when we click an ad to make 'em contribute to the cat, the advertiser pays the nickel (or whatever) and that might push our members into making the good ads more expensive for our friends, without proper punishment for the trash sellers. I tend to click the ones that are annoying occasionally just to rip off their ad budget a bit.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Mr Red
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 11:41 AM

No problem with Firefox 4 Portable.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Max
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 12:32 PM

I have a longer post to make but will do so after some more thought on this and a nap as I am ill today and really need some rest. It was important for me to say the following; though I implore you to wait for my more detailed follow up on the pending upgrades before you turn this thread upside down, for my brain is not functioning at 100% today, heck, I'm not even sure I'm at 50% right now.

Maggie,

The short version is, I agree. And I have recognized your (collectively) patience and leeway in which I am grateful for, for both that it took this long for this message to come and the polite way in which it was conveyed. Thank you (collectively and personally, and to anyone willing to contribute more than just a complaint)*.

(You can stop reading there, if you like, as the rest is just waxing and justifications... and of course in conclusion of all the waxing, the small point of what I'm actually going to do about it.)

I did expect it and did wait for it to explain this, though it would seem, at this moment, that I am unable to find an articulate reason why. I am resisting the philosophical waxing I tend to do, only because I am not sure the amount of consternation I feel about ads on mudcat causes me is within normal, healthy reason. Plus, I may be delirious at the moment due to a cascading failure starting with sinus pressure and ending in sleeplessness, with a medicine-I-will-never-take-again in the middle. Living hell sandwich, I'll call it. Crap, like a finger in the dam, while plugging the waxing, the digressing has sprung a leek. (yep delirium has set in)

I want you to know that I spend a lot of time thinking about ads, and I can go on and on about them and justify any decision I make, (even stoned on over-the-counter-but-regulated-cold-medicine-that-I-swear-is-just-amphetamines). I've made up my mind with a confident-I-am-doing-the-right-thing peace, in opposite directions, flip-flopping several times over the last 10 years. I think too much, we know this, but I feel this is a heavy concept for lots of reasons (that I just deleted because it's getting crazy waxy)* OK, focus...

When I'm done fiddling (a month, give or take 3 weeks), most* of the ads you see will not be seen by logged-in members and/or folks who opt out of ads. I haven't decided exactly HOW I'll do it yet, which is the reason it isn't done yet and haven't communicated what I'm up to till now. Still debating the mechanics of it, but the end goal is to give users as much control as I can handle, in manners that are at least aesthetically acceptable to my tastes, and technically possible and sensible. I have big ideas for the future of mudcat, just as I did on day 1, and I adhere to that strategy because it has led us here, the halfway point*. Yep, after 15 years I've only been able to get us half way to my original goal. The other half is going to be just what you've always wanted. All of it.

To keep this short(er) I'll just explain only that the end goal is to have a pile of data and a completely free interface to that data. I'll simply build the tools in which you can customize your own mudcat experience. My job, in the end will be reduced to storing the data, safely and securely as can be achieved today, while keeping up with the increasingly speedy approach of tomorrows, and building you the infrastructure of choice. In the end, it'll all be your choice, just as it is now, seemingly my burden to bear.*

To stay focused in this thread, which I hope we do, I'll conclude by saying that as far as paying for the site, I am excited to report that I believe that the patience you have shown with the ads thus far has yielded me the information I needed to monetize the site such that registered members need not see *most of* the ads.

I say most of simply (to cover me bum) because 1) some ads provide a service to you and to me (such as the amazon ads on the songs page)*, 2) we will continue to explore new and exciting opportunities such as perhaps sponsored* or hosted* new features like... say... image posting or mp3 uploads and perhaps streaming radio or whatever they'll (I'll) think of next*, and 3) maybe they (the ideal advertisers*, the dead ringers for our demographic will finally come into the 21st century and get with the technology that is available to manage such a campaign.*

I work with the principle that many musicians do and that is: if the music you are practicing is good, there'll never be a noise complaint.

However, I do get complaints because of shite like the IEv9 error that is new as of their forced upgrade on you. They changed and the error started, Mudcat didn't change to cause this error. Rant continues in the other thread (and I'm pretty hot over this issue, so comments should stay focused, and in the proper place)** declaring Chartbeat as safe

A nice segway rant to the points of new membership...*

*...coming soon to a permathread near this one (give or take 3 weeks)

Also starred the items which will no doubt be debated endlessly to no consensus.

** I've got a delete button and a mind full of bad ideas on this point.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: Acme
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 01:35 PM

Thanks, Max! If this is the "short" answer, you may want to find a publishing house for the long one (actually, that's not a bad idea. The story of how Mudcat came about is an interesting one, and I'm sure the insights of running a site like this amounts to a lot of interesting and sometimes techie stories).

I can see that this ad stuff is a work in progress, and you can pull them as you want, or write code so it doesn't all appear, or so it only appears once, whatever. The browsers available today are each different enough, and when you compound those differences with an underlayment of various operating systems, it is possible that we're all seeing different things. I use Win7 Ultimate and find it a much more responsive OS than several of the previous ones. It does let a lot of this stuff through - I wish there wasn't such a Big Brother component - everything wants to report back to the mothership these days.

I visit Amazon's Alexa site to see what is going on with some sites, to see how new they are, what their background is, etc. (I don't make purchases from sites so new they don't have a track record, for example.) Right now Mudcat's total traffic rank is 84,231 in the world, 36,380 in the US (out of millions and millions of web sites worldwide) and there are 783 sites linking in to Mudcat. Alexa breaks down the demographics of users, how often people land here because of a browser search (lots!) and more. There is terrific potential here for you to tap into, and I don't begrudge that. I hope you not only manage to pay for Mudcat but make a profit doing it - it is entirely appropriate, you've invested in this. I am not surprised the grousing about ads was expected, or that it helps test what we'll tolerate.

Thanks, Max, for all you do here!

Maggie (Stilly River Sage)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Overrun by ads at Mudcat
From: EBarnacle
Date: 01 Apr 11 - 02:37 PM

Actually, as I read this, I checked and saw fewer ads taking up space on this page than I usually see. Unfortunately, the weird associated ads on the bottom seem to have dropped out so I've lost that bit of additional amusement.


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