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For ads to work they have to be noticeable enough to see but not so intrusive that they put people off - that gets counter-productive, people either try to block them or, if it goes too far, go elsewhere. Conversely enough relevant ads can even be a plus for the user - I never look at them in general magazines or papers (or pay attention on TV for that matter), but I will look through the model ads in a model magazine, the telescope ads in an astronomy one etc. Those ones are useful and an additional benefit to looking at the magazine or website, win-win for all concerned.

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2 hours ago, SteveCole said:

Hi all,

 

For those who don't know me, I'm the publisher of the railways department at Warners. I thought I'd step-in as it's unfair on Andy to be taking the flack about a commercial decision made from my desk.

 

RMweb is an incredible website but it incurs pretty substantial running costs...without going into too much detail you're talking tens of thousands of pounds. It offers us amazing marketing value for BRM, we're able to host adverts from companies within the trade and now have RMweb Gold. All of these are great revenue streams but it still leaves a pretty big shortfall.

 

I'm going to be really honest, Google advertising generates a decent amount of money that will reduce the loss we currently make on RMweb. Some adverts work well, others don't so we're continually testing to find the right balance. The advert at the bottom of the page is one such 'test' and whilst I appreciate your comments (and we do listen) we need to test a little longer to be able to make a decision on whether to keep it or not. 

 

As Andy said, RMweb Gold members don't see any Google adverts and get a load of additional benefits thrown-in, including access to the BRM Digital Edition each month and huge back catalogue. 

 

Steve

Thanks for coming back on this . I appreciate that RMWeb has to pay its way and so advertising is important . I don’t have any issues with the advert I see at the top of the page  or down the side . It’s this last advert that is continually popping up at the bottom that is so distracting and annoying . I hope you take this into account  when you review and make decision 

 

I access this forum daily , I am quite prepared to pay something for it , if it got rid of these adverts . However I don’t want a subscription to BRM (I don’t subscribe to any magazines preferring to see content before buying)  or have access to the archive .I really don’t do digital magazines .  Bundling the whole thing together is not useful for those that just want to use the forum . I hope you also take this into account and consider smaller payment just to access forum Advert free .

 

It might be useful to conduct a poll 

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Well on my computer the ads now seem to be on the right hand side and no longer bouncing around at the bottom.

 

Quite OK by me now. I understand the need for them.

 

Brit15

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5 hours ago, Phil Parker said:

 

Don't bother going down the route of "I don't need to pay towards the server costs because I post such valuable stuff" route. All it does is wind up the Mods. Ultimately, this site has to be paid for with the sort of money you can spend at Tesco. No money=no RMweb. And as long as RMweb exists, people will post on it.

 

At the moment, the site is subsidised by a magazine many people enjoy telling us they don't buy. Long term, this can't go on, hence experiments with adverts and membership schemes. 

 

 

I didn't think my post said ANYTHING about "I dont need to pay towards server costs becouse I post such valuable stuff" Phil, I simply tried to mention that there ARE posters who CANT afford to pay, but who DO contribute  valuable knowledge and information to the site, (I probably dont as most of mine are crap) and it would be a shame if this particular Add banner at the bottom drove them away.

Obviously in trying to give helpfull feedback I hit a raw nerve

 

Sorry I'll leave you to it

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16 minutes ago, Mattc6911 said:

"I dont need to pay towards server costs becouse I post such valuable stuff"

 

I know you didn't say such Matt but someone else who has posted in topic does very much think that. Even rude enough today to post a link to an adblocker link, in effect, encouraging others to use the site without any contribution to upkeep whilst goading me. AFAIC be can just take a walk as I'm done with his antics.

 

Next time he posts anything he may commercially derive a benefit from I will take pleasure in trimming his toenails for going over the line.

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  • RMweb Gold

This topic reminds me of the song by someone or other...

 

"Money for nothing and your clicks for free!"

 

 

Kev.

 

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33 minutes ago, APOLLO said:

Well on my computer the ads now seem to be on the right hand side and no longer bouncing around at the bottom.

 

Quite OK by me now. I understand the need for them.

 

Brit15

 

The same on mine.

 

If it stays as it is now, I would be quite happy.

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7 hours ago, martin_wynne said:

I'm much puzzled by this topic.

 

I have never, ever seen any ads whatsoever on RMweb, and I'm not seeing any now. I use a bog-standard latest version of Firefox on a bog-standard Windows PC with no 3rd-party antivirus. I haven't installed any ad-blockers or other plug-ins or scripts. Everything is bog-standard.

 

I understand that advertising is needed to pay the costs, but I thought it was being displayed only to non-members of RMweb visiting the site, and to members who have not logged-in?

 

p.s. I just tried logging-out and browsing a few topics -- still no advertising.

 

p.p.s. Just tried in Opera browser and wow - advertising all over the place! Swapped back to Firefox and no advertising. The answer to the problem for those who don't like it seems obvious. :)

 

cheers,

 

Martin.

Martin is correct. You don't need to change browser though, just adjust the settings in your browser for the specific web site.

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Adverts no longer a problem on my computer and I will await news from @AY Modon the mobile issue before going on mine to try it! 

 

For some strange reason my profile photo, interests and birthday seem to have vanished! Not bothered about it really except that the photo was on an old computer and I now don't have a copy of it. Worse things happen at sea so I am not going to lose any sleep over it.

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40 minutes ago, AY Mod said:

Not on mobiles it hasn't. Yet.

I noticed it’s reverted to being over the notification when I came onto VNC, but doesn’t seem to be present in the threads

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It appears I've found the correct place now!

 

My Dell has now lost the 2cm band at bottom which was consuming 17.5% of my vertical viewing area, now replaced with an ads panel 7.5cm wide or 29.4% of the viewing area all down the page. The residual viewing area left to me is about same as that on an iPad mini!

 

I'm supportive of RMWeb needing revenue sources but the site present settings (as seen on my Dell anyway) are way beyond the intrusion / annoyance level of other "free" sites.

 

Colin

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17 hours ago, Legend said:

image.png.85cc99906fb69ecffa3831ef5142e8fa.png

 

Dammit ! I'd just gone for the low tech cover base of screen , when it popped up twice . I think it knows you know! 

 

Seriously if there was a Silver membership that got rid of this  and it was reasonably priced (obviously somewhere between 0 and gold membership , I'd be tempted just to get rid of this advert .  I don't object to advertising as such , the site obviously needs to pay its way , its just the pop up from the bottom of the screen thats the issue 

 

Yes, had that same ad about 50 times today! Yuck, I feel crook!

 

How does anyone think that sort of advertising is a good thing? If anything, it puts them last on buying their product, if I need it.

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4 hours ago, kevinlms said:

Yes, had that same ad about 50 times today! Yuck, I feel crook!

 

How does anyone think that sort of advertising is a good thing? If anything, it puts them last on buying their product, if I need it.

I don't recall buying any product from pop-up or flash advertising.  As kevinlms says, it goes to the bottom of my list.  If i want a product I will search for it, I don't need adverts keep flashing up when I am trying to read  a topic.  Would not be so bad if the ads related to model railways or anything railway related.  Also the ads to not appear to be related to any browsing history. 

Ads in general don't bother me but those pop up ones as sooo annoying!!!

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2 hours ago, irishmail said:

I don't recall buying any product from pop-up or flash advertising. 

I have often thought this.
How much does 'in your face' advertising work?
I have never bought anything I didn't know I needed until an ad popped up and told me, but I assume some people must do or retailers wouldn't spend their money this way.
There are two things on RMWeb that have influenced me to purchase something and that is something I have seen in the manufacturers threads or a members post.
When I want something (model railway related) my first port of call is always Hattons, (being my local shop) and if they don't have it I put it on my shopping list for the next MR exhibition or will google it if wanted sooner.
I don't think 'in your face' advertising has had much of an influence on most of the things I purchase. I just have a look in the shops or online when I need something.

You don't need pop-up adverts to tell you that you need to buy food, clothes, toiletries, furniture, washing machines, fridges, cars, houses, guitars, amplifiers, birthday cards, funeral services etc, you just go to the shops or look online and see what takes your fancy.
Has any member bought anything they weren't aware they needed until they saw it in one of the pop-up ads on here or elsewhere and did you buy it through the advert or buy locally or elsewhere online after a search?

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8 minutes ago, Free At Last said:

You don't need pop-up adverts to tell you that you need to buy [loads of 'stuff] you just go to the shops or look online and see what takes your fancy.

 

Forget what you want or need (or don't) or even what anyone else wants or needs; the simple fact is these advertisers pay Google to place their ads who in turn pay a proportion of that to the site owners for displaying the ads at different rates dependent on traffic levels and target audience etc and maybe higher rates if ads are clicked or converted etc (but that's not for us to worry about whether they're relevant or effective). It helps pay the costs, each advertiser, in effect, has to say what they're prepared to bid for ads to appear and rates can vary enormously. What matters is the end sum per month and not whether that individual ad is relevant.

 

What's also evident is that these 'outsiders' are prepared to pay more for your eyeballs than our trade is. Each advertising spot has a value.

 

I can't say I've ever bought anything after a TV ad but they must work. I may have bought a curry after a Pearl & Dean ad though (relevant and effective).

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23 minutes ago, AY Mod said:

 

Forget what you want or need (or don't) or even what anyone else wants or needs; the simple fact is these advertisers pay Google to place their ads who in turn pay a proportion of that to the site owners for displaying the ads at different rates dependent on traffic levels and target audience etc and maybe higher rates if ads are clicked or converted etc (but that's not for us to worry about whether they're relevant or effective). It helps pay the costs, each advertiser, in effect, has to say what they're prepared to bid for ads to appear and rates can vary enormously. What matters is the end sum per month and not whether that individual ad is relevant.

 

What's also evident is that these 'outsiders' are prepared to pay more for your eyeballs than our trade is. Each advertising spot has a value.

 

I can't say I've ever bought anything after a TV ad but they must work. I may have bought a curry after a Pearl & Dean ad though (relevant and effective).

I think that two questions are being conflated Andy (and Phil and Steve), which is helping to create more heat than light. These questions (with my personal answers) are:

 

Q1. Should there be ads on RMweb?

 

A: Yes, of course, for all the reasons that you have explained above and over the past few days.

 

Q2. Should there be ads on RMweb that pop up and obscure the part of the page that you are trying to read or type in?

 

A: No, because these affect adversely my interaction with RMweb and hence detract from my enjoyment of, and desire to participate in, the content of the site. I have no objection to pop-up ads per se, only these ones that pop up in the wrong place.

 

FYI, I only access RMweb through a desktop or laptop computer, not through a tablet, phone or other hand-held device.

 

Thanks.

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34 minutes ago, St Enodoc said:

I think that two questions are being conflated Andy (and Phil and Steve), which is helping to create more heat than light. These questions (with my personal answers) are:

 

Q1. Should there be ads on RMweb?

 

A: Yes, of course, for all the reasons that you have explained above and over the past few days.

 

Q2. Should there be ads on RMweb that pop up and obscure the part of the page that you are trying to read or type in?

 

A: No, because these affect adversely my interaction with RMweb and hence detract from my enjoyment of, and desire to participate in, the content of the site. I have no objection to pop-up ads per se, only these ones that pop up in the wrong place.

 

FYI, I only access RMweb through a desktop or laptop computer, not through a tablet, phone or other hand-held device.

 

Thanks.

Another thing that is annoying, is repeated ads for something you have already purchased, yet you get those same ads for weeks afterwards.

Sometimes it works, in the case of consumable products (for sake of discussion, perhaps chocolate biscuits) and I might be tempted to keep buying.

However if it is a one off purchase (for sake of discussion, perhaps an electric kettle), once I have purchased one, the last thing I need is to see ads for buying electric kettles. I really am not interested in seeing those ads any more, especially if I would have saved money a week later!

 

OK, perhaps this isn't RMweb/BRM's problem, but is Google doing these advertisers a disservice? Advertising can be expensive, but how much money is wasted by annoying potential customers? I would suspect that the ear wax sellers, are only paying per click, so I suspect RMweb, isn't getting paid much!

 

But regardless, Andy & Steve, I won't be blocking the ads.

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1 hour ago, kevinlms said:

Another thing that is annoying, is repeated ads for something you have already purchased,

 

Absolutely nothing we can do about this. We don't know what you've just bought and we don't need/wish to know.

 

But, your browser may record that you have been searching on Amazon for gimp masks and this is fed through to Google who then serve some ads (just for you) on what gimp masks you can buy on eBay - they won't know that you actually bought one from Amazon, just that you searched for it. They don't necessarily know who you are but they know you wanted a gimp mask and they work on the basis that you may not have found the one that fits you so they send you an ad.

 

You have more control over the above scenario than we do through how you set your browser up to remember or forget your activities and when the ads are displayed here (we don't see what you get served) you can elect to close the ad and tell them why you don't think you should be receiving that ad. As long as you don't go looking for more gimp masks you probably won't get any more ads for them.

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There was me thinking the "A" was short for "Andy" ... .

 

As for the adverts, I doubt if too many people here had too much of a problem with the existence of adverts (bills have got to be paid somehow) - just their placement - and (in some cases) their suitability, which the people running this site probably have little control over anyway.

 

 

Thankfully, I've been spared some of those obviously scammy adverts that pop up all the time on some "news"paper websites - with (presumably) stolen photos - and clickbait captions along the lines of:
"Tens of Thousands of Henllys* Seniors in Rapture About Exciting New Funeral Plan."

 

(* Insert name of hamlet of choice.

 

Even if that many people, of any age, did live in Henllys - or the "exciting new homes developments" that have been tacked on - I suspect that, if faced with an "offer" like this, they'd have other reasons for making themselves scarce.)

 

 

Meanwhile, if "content covering" ads were to reappear at some point in the future, I could imagine some of the desperate measures some people round these parts might resort to - like modelmaking, for instance.

 

Don't worry - I don't think anybody's likely to be desperate enough to want to know what sort of #%@* I'd be likely to throw together, using a Parkside guard's van chassis, N20 motor / gearbox, some Ratio OO seating strips and scraps of styrene sheet ... .

 

 

Huw.

 

 

Edited by Huw Griffiths
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