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Here are some Q/A I had while reading this:
- Q: What is the objective of advertising for Appropedia/Ekopedia?
- A: To have some funding in order to improve our project.
- Q: What is the objective of advertising for the advertiser?
- A: To sell more.
- Q: What is the direct effect of advertising?
- A: More consumption.
- Q: Is Appropedia/Ekopedia having the philosophy that "more consumption is good for earth or society"?
- A: In my personal opinion, no. I personally do not trust capitalism (or any other economic/political theory applied yet) being able to solve our society problems. I personally believe that we must reduce our consumption and I believe in Appropriate technologies.
- Q: Is ethical advertising possible?
- A: As it is said, "ethical is a matter of degree" or a matter or perception. As an example: Would it be ethical to do advertising for a great green car company? May be for some people, but not in my opinion because I believe cars (event the greenest one) are not good for earth and our society. I personally prefer urbanism that promote cities without cars.
- Q: Would it be possible to filtrate advertising (white or black listing) only for really great projects?
- A: May be. But still, I do not know such solution.
- Q: So, would it be possible to have other source(s) of funding?
- A: I believe donations and crow funding are a good way to finance project like ours. May be, we could also find NGO that could help our projects.
--jlhenry 15:11, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
- Thanks for these thoughts. I agree with a lot of this, but on the other side:
- Advertising can promote consumption, but can also provide a service, in informing the customer about a greener option. People are still going to buy cars, so I'm happy with promotion of *very* fuel-efficient cars... especially if there is also promotion of more sustainable places to live in (kinds of urbanism moving in the direction you mention).
- Re donations: I'm okay with relying more on donations, but this means being *much* more assertive about asking for donations. (I'm also okay with being much more assertive.) It's normal for non-profits to send out regular requests via emails - newsletters or specifically as donation requests. This is okay if done with sensitivity. --Chriswaterguy 20:01, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Found on the web
- Is advertising ethical ? Isn't it unfair on someone who may have a better product, but may not have the money to advertise it?
--jlhenry 15:17, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
- In an ideal world this information is freely available on demand, and every supplier has equal opportunity to spread information about their product or service. I think we are already doing a good job of letting people share information about their green products. If someone pays for extra exposure, that is the nature of business today. It is not as critical and damaging an aspect of commerce as the promotion of unthinking consumption.
- I'm sure the free sharing of product and service information will continue to happen more and more. For now, Appropedia needs funds to grow. Unless there are adequate funds from other sources, then relatively ethical advertising is still pretty good by the standards of the economy we live in. (I realize that even "by the standards..." may be a controversial, but I'm a reformer, not than a revolutionary, when it comes to social change. I like Edmund Burke's thinking on this.) --Chriswaterguy 20:01, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Examples of Web projects not using advertising but doing well
Here is a list (to be growing) of web projects not using ads, but still receiving financing.
- Wikipedia : donations (mostly money, but I think also servers).
- http://www.idealist.org: Donations, some Income (very small I guess) and Foundations Support. They received about $ 3 millions in 2007.
- Wikipedia displays prominent banners in their (twice yearly?) fundraising campaigns, and I think they got $6 million last time. That's tiny compared to the advertising income they could get if they had even very modest advertising. See Wikipedia:Project:Advertisements. "Wikipedia is one of the most visited sites on the web. Tens of millions of dollars could be generated if even just a few users allowed ads." " It has been estimated that such endeavors could potentially raise hundreds of millions of dollars." (sources given on the Wikipedia page)
- It would probably split the Wikipedia community if it were anything other than opt-in advertisements, but I don't think there'd be quite such a strong feeling about this on Appropedia. --Chriswaterguy 20:01, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Here are just a few quick notes:
- There are some products that we would probably love to advertise, for instance the Kick Start treadle pump. They do fundraising only for advertising. Their production and distribution is covered by their sales.
- Not all advertising is for products. Some are for events, websites, information, nonprofit donation requests, etc.
- Appropedia has been turned down for some grants because we have not shown any way of sustaining the organization without donations.
- Ads could be targeted to population and skin. We could have a low bandwidth skin that does not show any ads, or only text based ads.
- Ads could be useful and discreet such as Gmail, as opposed to grotesque and inappropriate such as Green Wikia.
- We have a lot of potential growth, both on and off the web, that would necessitate money.
--Lonny 16:49, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
- Great points.
- I think we can even have a simple "off" button for the ads, to reduce the negative reaction of people who just don't like ads. --Chriswaterguy 20:01, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
"Consumption" that we want to promote
Lonny mentioned treadle pumps. Below are a few ideas of things I would have zero qualms in promoting. This is not meant as an "approved products" list - it's just a demonstration that not all "consumption" has a negative impact. --Chriswaterguy 20:01, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
- Compost bins, worms, compost teas and other equipment used for sustainable food growing,
- Well designed solar panels
- Local farmers markets
- Recycling and repair services
- Cycling equipment
- Mass transit
- Energy-efficient devices, especially where demand is inflexible (e.g. efficient showers - the only thing better for energy consumption is one where no one showers, and I don't want to live in that society).
What is advertissing
I curious also about what are we talking about... Is it to add a box that would appears on anypages and show a random ads?
Or could it be a category of pages related to our sponsors... Maybe some companies would be fine already by just being mentioned... Without "aggressive" (personal opinion) pop-up...
So could we also make clear what is advertising on our websites...
Thank you Olivier C 14:21, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
- I understand advertising to mean discreet semi-random ads on each page (partly determined by the topic of the page).
- I think we can all (whether pro or anti-advertising) probably agree that we don't want:
- graphics-intensive ads
- distracting animation.
- any graphics for those in countries with low bandwidth.
- unavoidable ads (if we did have ads, a user should be able to register and choose to not have ads; or as an anonymous user, click something and turn off ads by setting a cookie or temporarily tracking the IP).
- Thanks for the question. --Chriswaterguy 02:53, 3 July 2009 (UTC)
I am curious about the evolution of this discussion cause it kind of block the collaboration between Ekopedia and Appropedia...
Indeed, unfortunatly (my own opinion), Ekopedia users are not yet open for any kind of advertising...
If Appropedia is postponing the project then we could continue like before... If Appropedia has found specific advertising for "Green" website, then I can pitch it on Ekopedia.
Thank you Olivier C 13:28, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
- Hi Oivier,
- I don't think that this discussion has blocked the collaboration. I think crazy summer plans slowed down the process. We should definitely start back up the conversations and continue the other work that we have all been doing. The advertising issue is an issue of sustainability. We need to make sure that this endeavor is eventually sustainable. That may be through donation, partnerships, value added services, grants, advertising, etc. I will send out an email about holding a restart partnership meeting. I think we are all still excited about the possibilities.
- Thank you, --Lonny 00:15, 2 September 2009 (UTC)