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When Ads Attack

Sometime last week I happened to see what my website looks like when I am not logged in and I discovered the new [or new to me] feature in which wordpress.com serves up ads to [not-logged-in] wordpress.com visitors. As the WP folks note: “At WordPress.com, we sometimes display discreet AdSense advertisements on your blog to help pay the bills. This keeps free features free!”

I appreciate the service that wordpress provides to me but I also do not wish to have ads on my website, thus happily I discovered today that I can pay a yearly fee to remove the ads from the site. I have done this and hopefully this step will keep the ads away going forward. I apologize for the ads that have been present in recent weeks (months?). I did not see them on my side or I would have taken care of this sooner.

While it was already newly arrived on my radar, thanks go to Adam Fish for noticing this phenomena and highlighting the discordance of the ads in the context of my website given the kinds of open access, open source, public-interest topics that I often reflect on here. As a specialist in the cultures of media and media production, Adam would be better prepared than I am to reflect on the wider implications of the “discreet AdSense advertisements” (to use WP’s language) that are now a part of the wordpress ecology.

I value many services that are supported through underwriting and advertisements so I am not against ads in a wholesale way. Its just not what I want here and I am very glad that I have the option of paying to make them disappear.

WP.com users can learn more here: http://en.support.wordpress.com/no-ads/

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