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FOBO: About our use of adverts

You have probably noticed that many (most) of the pages on this Web site have advertisements on them. This page explains why, and how they are used.

Why are there ads?

Originally I put the ads on the Web site because I wanted to understand more about Web advertising, as part of my day job, and also I was hoping they would offset the bandwidth costs of running this site.

It turns out that the ads now more than pay for the bandwidth, and are close to paying for the scanner and some of the books, but that is because I've worked hard at improving them.

please do not click on the ads just to support me

Don't click on ads unless you are genuinely interested in what they say. The advertiser has to pay for the click, and, if you then don't buy anything, you have increased their cost of advertising. So, in future, the advertiser won't have so much money to spend, and my income will go down. Also, Google (whose ads I use) will eject me from their programme altogether if people click ads too much just to earn short-term cash. Unfortunately, without the revenue from the ads, I don't know what would happen to this site.

What is the ad policy?

I am trying to use ads that are unobtrusive and informative. In other words, they should be relevent to the Web pages on which they appear, and should not be distracting to people who just want to look at the images.

Every time someone leaves my site by clicking on an ad, it's presumably because the advert is more interesting to them than my site. Either they came to my site through a search or link and it wasn't what they wanted, or my site failed them in some way. So I don't want to encourage people to leave my site if my site can be of use to them. The primary purpose of fromoldbooks.org is not to make money, but to share the pictures I love and the texts that I love from old books that might otherwise be lost or forgotten.

Hence, there are no popup ads. No animated ads. No video ads. There may be image ads, since I can't easily control that in all cases, but the image ads should not appear near FOBO images, as that would be distracting.

I am interested in hearing from people who have strong opinions about the ads one way or the other. Please don't write to tell me that I could make more money by making the ads more distracting or by irritating legitimate users of the site. But feel free to make other suggestions! See below for how to contact me (my name is Liam).

How do the ads work?

The ads I use right now are Google Adsense. Google runs a bot that scans the Web page for keywords and phrases. Meanwhile, advertisers submit to Google a list of words or phrases, and say how much they are willing to pay to put an ad on pages with those words, and of course give Google the text of the ad. Google's bot compares the words on my Web pages with Google's list of advertisers' words, and uses the ads with the highest price.

The result is that the ads are supposed to be relevant. Google also uses information about the person looking at the ads, such as which country you are in, to prefer local ads.

Contacting Liam

I am Liam at holoweb dot net; let me know if you'd like me to scan specific images, or higher resolution copies, or have any interesting uses for these images, or like them. Tell me what colour socks you are wearing. In fact, include it in the Subject of the mail, e.g. socks: green, and you'll get past my spam filters sooner.

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