Does Advertising Pollute Good Clean Fun?

Build something fun, let users play with it, and watch it grow. This is why we created The Picture Game. The premise of the game is engaging content where users get to stare at a (very) small portion of a picture and guess what the picture is. Sort of like “name-that-tune,” but for pictures. But where’s the money? We believe that content is advertising, and advertising is content. As we build out this game, it will become a platform for sponsorship and content/product placement. Try this one, see if you can tell what is in the picture.

This other article asks whether Anyone Pays Attention to Banner Ads. People do pay attention, but a lot less than before. In the early days of banner advertising at Infoseek in 1996 (ouch, I’m showing my age here), a clickthru rate of 1% on a banner ad was considered “bad”. Ad banners triggered by keywords routinely draw 2-3% clickthru rate, and clickthru rates of 5%+ is not uncommon. Today, as reported by major Facebook application developers such as RockYou, clickthrus of 0.1% – 0.7% are considered “great”. How the world has changed!

First we have ad banners. Then we have ad blockers. Based on the demise of a great ad blocker such as InterMute’s AdSubtract, I conclude that users have trained themselves to mentally block the ad banners and ad blockers are not needed any more. For advertising to work, it needs to come in other forms.

We recently added the ability for users to submit pictures for new games so users are not just playing the games but creating the games as well. Submitted games can be private or public. Private games are ones where the answer is not likely to be of interest to the general public, e.g. a picture of your kid is probably interesting/recognizable by your friends and families. After you create a private game, you can forward it to your friends and families. Public games are of people, places and things that are widely recognized. Given the possibility of spams, we do review all public games before they are really made public.

Does advertising pollute your fun? It’s possible, but does not necessarily need to be the case.

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