On Ads

In our previous post, What’s your favorite feature?, a few of you listed “no ads” as one of your favorite features of WordPress.com. This made me uncomfortable—it’s not accurate, and I want to clarify.

Since the ad test about 6 weeks ago there have been ads. Where? We very occassionally show Adsense (contextual text ads) on post and tag pages.

Why? To allow us to focus on free features in addition to paid and to offset costs of rapidly rising traffic.

There are two questions to think about if this comes as a surprise to you: Have I ever seen these ads? Have my readers? (Ask them!)

The ad code tries hard not to intrude or show ads to regular readers, which means a small percentage of page views. Apparently it works, since we haven’t gotten many feedbacks on them. Perhaps a better favorite would be “really, really unobtrusive ads.”

Even though you will probably never see an ad, if you did happen to come across one I don’t want it to be a surprise. The comments last time we discussed ads were fairly heated but I wanted to make sure everyone had accurate information.

What are our future plans? There have been a fair number of requests for an Adsense widget so it’s still on our mind as a paid upgrade. Before that, however, we will probably do something that you have more control over such as Amazon or Goodstorm integration.


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Matt

137 Comments

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  1. vientos

    It’s ok…., Gl ~

  2. raincoaster

    I wish you’d send at least an automated email notification when ads go up on someone’s posts. I came across some on my blog (I assume it was because I was not signed in) and it was a shock. Yes, I love “no ads” and I’d be willing to pay for no ads, just the way it was when I signed up. How much?

  3. Zeon

    An adsense widget would come in handy, or something similar. Since I used one before on my website, I know how they work.

  4. Pamela

    I’d be willing to pay for an adsense widget, but not much and I don’t mind seeing ad links every once in a while.

  5. aishel

    I haven’t seen a single ad, so I guess it really is unobtrusive! :) Kudo’s!

  6. callmeanxious

    I’ve never even noticed the ads.

  7. agupta

    I really HATE the idea of visitors to my blog having to see ads. One of the best things I loved about wp.com was absence (or atleast I thought so!) of ads.

    I wouldn’t mind paying some small amount of money to keep my blog ad free.

  8. darvish

    I would love to feature some amazon books (including my own) and have an affiliate link with them to generate some small income from the blog. Hope you do it soon.

  9. josh

    Works for me! Anyone who cannot handle this on a free site should go live in a cave.

  10. fivecats

    I haven’t noticed, so they are indeed really, really, really unobstrusive.

  11. jsphchung

    I started WordPress today so I guess that’s why I don’t know too much about these ads and whatnot. I woun’t be suprised when I do see them though – you guys have to keep it free somehow.

  12. [KwZ]

    I’d be ok with ads on tag pages. And it’s cool to have them occassionally and not all the time.

  13. gwhiz

    I’m all for a nominally priced paid upgrade!

  14. calupict

    It’s fair to free user of wordpress user to have ads at their page; since wordpress need fund too. How about if wordpress make ads use package like livejournal do.

  15. dragonsvamp

    sounds good. I think ive yet to see an add tho and if i ever were to see one i don’t think i would notice anyway!

  16. stepin

    I actually like wordpress WITHOUT ads but it’s ok to have some text ads as long as it doesn’t bother the readers

  17. Mr Angry

    I know people get heated about ads but I really don’t understand that. As far as I’m concerned if you are using any free service, let alone one as fantastic as WordPress, you have no rights whatsoever to complain about choices made by the creators. If you don’t like it stop using it. There are plenty of alternatives.

    I’ll probably get flamed for saying so but the sanctimonious, self-serving attitude some people display makes me really angry.

  18. trucex

    As far as ads on user pages, I’ve got a bit of concern with your thoughts. Personally, I think that giving users access solely to AdSense is a mistake. Not only would it then seem as though you are endorsing a program that might do things to your users that you might not agree with, but you might also push people away that aren’t fans of AdSense.

    My two-cents is to either include a wider variety of networks (I do like your comment about more control) or don’t include this option at all.

    Your site, your company, your call…obviously. Just figured I’d share my tiny piece of the pie. :)

  19. rollmops

    For me, no, i never came across an ad here at wp.

  20. YDS

    I find it funny that the complaints about ads are, when you boil them down, really more about WordPress controlling the ads (and revenue) instead of the individual bloggers than about having annoying ads pop up unexpectedly. Having user-controlled ads as a paid upgrade sounds like a really fair way to address that, while still monetizing the services for WordPress. Good job.

  21. sheida

    Ads are great, I beleive this way many more bloggers can use free features than before

  22. Ron

    That’s a great idea. I’m glad you’re testing things before you throw it out there.

  23. MyScribbles: Write-ups of an Afghan

    It’s always good to make things clear. Unclear, confusing situtaions can lead to a lot of mishaps. And, for your information, I have never come across any AdSense ads in the past seven or eight months that I have been using WordPress. The ads are “really unobtrusive.” Thumbs up!

  24. raincoaster

    Hang on. “We’ve never gotten a single complaint” simply isn’t true: I sent you one a week or so ago.

    All I want is the option NOT to have ads on my blog. I’m willing to pay; there are plenty of people who are dying to have ads on theirs, and some kind of revenue splitting model would make both WordPress and them happy. Why not talk to those people and use them to test your ads?

  25. money4

    We should at least know what are the ads on our posts, because we might wish to filter certain content ads out of our pages.

  26. Aphra Behn

    Colour me stupid, (or color me, enven), but how can you make money from ads that no-one sees?

  27. Thomas

    I hate ads!

  28. wadehel

    oooooh… i see..

  29. Jope

    Amazon integration would be great, I’d love to be able to post my wishlist, link back to the books I’m reading, etc…

    Would this allow us to become Amazon affiliates individually?

  30. that harvard kid

    I’m glad, actually, that you’ve said this. It’s kind of a comfort to know that there’s a sensible way you guys manage to stay in business. I mean like it could be worse, selling us out to companies and such. Ads (which I have never-ever-ever seen) are fine with me as long as they remain uncommonly rare. Back to blogging about Good Will Hunting or writing some random short story.

  31. Jamie Clark

    That’s fair enough. As long as it doesn’t get to the point where the ads get in the way or ruin the look of a blog then it’s fine in my book.

  32. Fredi

    Wow, I’m one of those who have never seen one :D.. I understand, anyway.

  33. Jeremiah

    I’d love to be able to display any kind of ads, thanks a bunch if you implement them!

  34. elvenbyte

    Perfect for now with this non obtrusive ads.

  35. dashboardspy

    Hooray! I applaud your thinking in this direction. Ad integration is an important factor. I’ve been wishing for it since Day 1. Thanks.

  36. Hughesie

    intresting

  37. Abi79

    Ads? Wha’? Where? Oh, yes. You’ve did a very good job on making them unobtrusive. Congrats! Oh, and maybe you should also tell us to click on them. I don’t think that just seeing them gives you any profit. :P

  38. karthiksn

    Hmmm… I have never seen an AD here so I don’t and it wont hurt to have some ads in tags pages and at our pages sometimes

  39. agaton

    It would be nice if the blogowners could choose self if it would be ads or not on their blogs. But it would be even better if the blogowners could have their own adsense-ads on the blog. So we could get some extra-money for our blog.

  40. avuee

    I don’t really like seeing ads on a blog. It takes away from the actual content. If a blog is plastered with ads, I’d wonder why. What is the point? Are they trying to drive money to their blog by the number of clicks? Or is it some sneaky SEO project. I personally, I wouldn’t want ot use ads. I don’t want to advertise anything or be influenced to have something I can’t controll featured by me. Just my thoughts.

  41. scientaestubique

    Thanks! I’d pay for an AdSense upgrade.

  42. IcArUs`

    well, as long the ads do not annoy us… or if they do not popups on us.. it’s still fairly acceptable… =)

    after all, it’s ads that form part of the funds for maintaining the site. (tt’s what i think. correct me if i’m wrong on this)

  43. techaddress

    I think an adsense widget is a great idea and it would minimize the number of your bloggers that end up hosting the blog themselves and then going over to Federated Media to get ad inventory. Not that there is anything wrong with FM, they are a great company with a great service. It just seems to me that wordpress would like to help the customers that are looking to monetize their traffic with an easy widget.

    Thoughts?

  44. Rui Martins

    1. Well, I´ve never seen one. And I´m on my blog pratically all day…
    2. I for Ads. As I wrote somewhere before, I think is good for everyone to have ads if that increase the income required for WordPress to run. If it allows some wordpress bloggers to earn some also… Why not? I even agree for Ads allways shown on the wordpress bar or footer, if they remain smal and non intrusive (I mean, no popups).
    3. I still think that WordPress is the best blogger available, and I have been on several others! With ads ou with no ads. That will not change my opinion.

  45. Rushi Vishavadia

    I surf WordPress blogs quite often, and I haven’t seen these “ads”.

  46. engtech

    Amazon integration?

    Does that mean supporting the Amazon affiliate program? Or that if we’re talking about a book we can link it to amazon and it’ll inject the WordPress affiliate ID?

    Still, ads don’t bother me as long as they’re never obtrusive/get in the way of the content.

  47. xaymaca

    I would love to be able to put ads on my site as I need an extra source of income and being able to earn a few US dollars from my blog would make a huge difference (I live in Jamaica where one US dollar is worth 66 local dollars! )

    Would you be able to put your ads on blogs “with permission” and also allow blog owner to put ads, so that people who don’t want ads don’t have to have any ?

    I think a lot of blog owners outside the U.S. would like to be able to put ads on their site, but won’t be able to afford it as a paid service……

  48. narval

    Adsense should definitely be a paid upgrade. Otherwise there will be plenty of blogs made just for money. I never saw ads on any wordpress.com blog by the way, and I’m glad of that.

  49. Brent

    I have never have actually seen any of the ads.

    Ads suck dude!
    :cool:

  50. Ergo

    Hmmm… interesting. I’ve never seen an ad on my blog yet. I guess that’s good. But if, as you say, these ads are not obstrusive (or intrusive) and contextual and well-placed, I would have no problems having a few of them some of the time. It certainly does not compromise the awesomeness of WordPress.com! :)

  51. Elaine

    Hmm,
    You seem to render everyone speechless!
    I for one have another feature I love – honesty on your part!
    You guys are great – keep up the good work!

  52. Matt

    raincoaster, they’re shown fairly randomly and rarely. We tend to prefer talking to folks via our blog rather than email, because email is so hit and miss. I don’t know how much “blocking ads” will be yet, we really haven’t thought about it. How much would seem fair to you? They’re already blocked for regular visitors and people who are logged in.

  53. Tyler

    wateva u gotta do to keep it free n running. :)

  54. Matt

    raincoaster, sorry I missed your feedback. I’ve updated the entry.

  55. Vikas Nigam

    I see no ads here…

  56. Matt

    Aphra Behn, we make a lot less money than if we showed ads on every page, or if we showed graphical ads instead of text ones, but we didn’t want them to be obnoxious.

  57. displayblog

    Ads are great if they help you accomplish your goal of getting more information, purchasing a product, etc. Ads are terrible if they don’t do that and instead just get in the way.

    An idea: I can see avatar-based ads for other blogs with similar content (similar to the surf by tag feature, but more visual). I would really enjoy a feature like that and it will make it easy to get more information that is pertinent to what I am trying to accomplish. The funny thing is that I don’t have an avatar yet. :)

    Request: AdSense, Amazon, etc. By charging users a little bit per month, WordPress can generate revenue to offset some costs, and users have the option of generating a bit of revenue too.

    One more thing: Guys, you are doing a magnificent job with WordPress! Thanks!

  58. Jan

    My suggestion: Let everyone decide if, how many and where ads should appear on the blog, possibly even allow changing the colour etc., and then give 50% of the earnings to the user and keep the remaining 50% for yourself. I think that would be fair as everyone could decide wheter they want ads or not, and since there would be enough of an incentive to put ads up you could get more money in total AND make most of the users very happy: Those who want no ads have no ads, those who want to make money with ads can do that without paying directly for an paid upgrade – you would get enough money trough your 50% share.

  59. storymask

    I would like to be able to pay for the ability to add Ads to my blog so that I can supplement my income. I would like to add these ads using my affiliate tags for Amazon and Adsense. I would also like to add forums to my blog, but that’s an off subject topic. Anyways, that’s my two cents. ~ Ben

  60. brianfox

    I wouldnt mind if you gave users the ability to allow word press to display ads on pages. The ads may come in 2 flavours.
    One, that word press gets the revenue for ad clicks (user does not pay for the service).
    two, that the user pays for adsense and they have the say in what ads can be placed on the page and they get the revenue from the ads.

    I am all for wp displaying ads on my page (as long as its not too obtrusive).
    WP has an amazing service. If they don’t survive the market, our blogs dont either.

  61. raincoaster

    If you’re signed into WordPress, my understanding is that you’ll never see the ads. I only found them on my blog because I’d signed out to give a kid the computer.

    I fully support:
    A) Ads on Tag pages and WordPress.com (itself) pages like this one
    B) a Paid No Ad option…will have to research the price. Diary-X was free, but Diary-X is, alas, toast.
    C) a Paid Blogger-Gets-the-Revenue ad placement upgrade
    D) a revenue split between WordPress and the blogger for WordPress-placed ads

    I joined when there were no ads on WordPress. That changed, and in legal parlance that’s a material fact which would make or break a deal if I were blog shopping. So enough with the “don’t whine, you’re getting it for free so you have no rights” talk. If they didn’t want to hear from us they wouldn’t ask for comments, would they?

    Matt, thanks for the correction. I appreciate it.

  62. therevr

    I’ve felt good about the ad-free environment. I did sign up for AdSense somewhere else, but always felt rather mixed about it. However, if by Amazon integration you mean something like a widget I could turn on and off that could provide link(s) to my personal recommendations (including my own book(s) at Amazon: keep talking!

  63. mattroberts

    I’m not against ads. I used to have ads when i ran my own site and made all of $3.00 in 2 months, if that 3 bucks goes to make my life easier as in not paying for hosting or maintaining a site – and keeps the service humming here – go for it.

    That said – it would be nice to be able to block certain adwords from being displayed on you blog. Occassionaly, keywords on a site can lead to very unfortunate adsense related silliness. i think in that sense end user should have some say (though implementation would be a nightmare.)

    thanks for being transparent on the issue.

  64. naturalbabyblog

    I for one don’t like ads. It’s the fact if someone clicks, they may not find their way back. But if they are to be there, I wish that we could have ads that are non competing with our own product if we are using the blog to do a little promoting for our website.

  65. talkislam

    paid upgrade sounds good

  66. nortel

    matt,
    the adsense widget shouldn’t be a premium service but a revenue share. hey, i have nothing against anyone – including automattic – trying to make a few bucks but i’m not willing to pre-pay for the privelege.

    mark

  67. veltis

    Ads pay bills. Seems fair to me.

  68. envika

    I hate ads, but I haven’t seen them, so no big dealJUSTDON’TLETITINTERFEREWITHRSS

  69. timethief

    (1) Please clarify whether or not any WP approved advertising has been appearing on my blog, without my knowledge. If so this would make me a liar because I have been telling people my blog is ad-free.

    (2) Please clarify what you mean by “we will probably do something that you have more control over such as Amazon or Goodstorm integration”. Will we individual bloggers have the capacity to say “no” to Amazon and Goodstorm or not? And, if not, then please be specific by stating exactly what do you mean by “control”.

    (3) If there must be advertising on my blog then I want to be the one who makes the call on what advertising goes on it. Alternatively, I want the option of paying a modest fee to have an ad-free blog.

  70. britgirl

    I do not want to have or see ads on my blog. I don’t want my readers to come across them either. I dislike the thought that ads, however unobtrusive may be being placed on my blog, but can understand as a free service this is the usual model. I personally think to have adsense everywhere on blogs will spoil the uncluttered look that is so much a trademark of WordPress. I quickly leave blogs I visit who have lots of ads. And I suspect my readers might do the same. You don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.

    However, if ads are coming, they are coming. Just please tell me how much I will need to pay to keep my blog ad-free. If it’s not extortionate, I’m certainly prepared to pay.

  71. rohan quinby

    First of all, I love WordPress. You guys do great work and I have not regretted migrating from Blogspot for one minute. Although the javascript thing kinda bugged me, BUT:

    I hate ads, but I do understand that there is less and less on the web for free these days. I also hate the idea of visitors to my blog seeing ads, and I would be willing to pay for an “absence” widget for my blog.

    Oh, and could we block ads with just a simple one-time payment, denoted in a simple monetary amount, without “credits” or some other complicated bother?

    Anyway, I really DO love you guys. Keep up the good work!

  72. Matt

    britgirl, they’re not coming, they’ve been running since the test post. When they do show, which is rarely, it’s a single Adsense ad — nothing overwhelming. Trust me, I love the uncluttered look too! As I said above, we’re strongly considering an upgrade that would prevent ads from ever showing on your site.

  73. Matt

    timethief,

    1) Ads were running as said in this post.

    2) More control means it would be off by default, and you could add a widget for products you like (for example).

    3) Okay!

  74. aishel

    I mentioned above that I don’t see any ads, but I just realized, I use the adblock extension for Firefox, so that could be why. I never see ads, on any site :)

  75. raincoaster

    Matt, thanks for listening and integrating this into the planning at WordPress. This is what Online Community is all about.

  76. therealdonquixote

    How about you give us a theme that allows for ONE banner ad that can only be sold as adspace by private contract. The space is still limited to “img” and or “a href” tags.

    Contextual ads will not make you any money worth you time. Forget about them. Adspace sales (ie renting space on your blog for a fee and or adding click through cost as well) is what will get you money. Not an advertising program set up by some corporate entity that is not you.

    The only people who make money off of adsense is Google.

  77. Ashish C.

    I agree with most users – Haven’t seen any ads. Personally I’d like to see an Amazon widget instead of adsense. Even then WP still is the best free blogging solution. It wouldn’t hurt for SOME Ads but when they are plastered (Like many corporate webs) it doesn’t look to good.

    Would love to see Amazon since people who review things can easily put them up for sale on their blogs making some money from the sale. There are hundreds of bloggers who Do review things like books, music, software etc. I’m not against ad’s if they are unobtrusive. If you can pull off a Flickr style Widget then its ok.

    Anyhow WordPress Rawks.

  78. Sports Snob

    1) Congratulations on running such a super site. I run my sports blog with two other guys and none of us are computer wizards and we LOVE WordPress because blogging is actually fun. We don’t really care about the html tags and the format of the blog. its just about Content

    2) but now that the blog is getting popular and the three of us are really committed to it, there is a chance to make money from it we would like to put up ads.

    3) A PAID AD widget is truly the best way to go. But it has to be nominal. And again it has to be REGULATED. I don’t know how though. Maybe we could have a discussion on that?

  79. linkonline

    I have not seen any ads on wordpress yet. Wouldn’t mind seeing it. Would love to earn something too.

  80. Goyal

    I agree with raincoaster. With one exception.

    I want the paid blogger to get shared revenue with control over the type of Ad’s

    1> Have a paid option for no Ad’s
    2> Share revenue with paid Ad’s account
    3> Non paid accounts to show (limited) Ad’s and the owners being informed when Ad’s are placed on their blogs.

  81. Chittaranjan

    Ads are erally Unobtrusive. Have seen only one till now! And I’m sure I won’t see them again (Courtesy FF/AdBlock ;) )

    Ads or no ads, WP is the best.

  82. uptownflavor

    Thank goodness! I am not totally against ads and often click on ads I see on other peoples blogs. Often I am informed about a service or feature I didn’t know about before. As long as pop ups and scrolling ads are not part of the deal I’m all for it!

  83. Per

    1. I do realize the necessity for earning money to pay the bills.
    2. When I ask people for their permission to use material on my blog – I always pointed out that my blog is

    ->private
    ->non-commercial
    ->and that I do not get any revenue out of it.

    3. I now learn, that they may have come to my blog to have a look and seen ads. Had I known of those before, I’d stated clearly, that I am not responsible for them – but rather have to live with them – because the blogspace is free. This is quite embarressing to me.

    4. I immediately deleted my blog on some other blogspace when after signing up I discovered that I would have to accept ads or pay money. (I don’t recall the name anymore: TypeHead? LiveJournal?)

    5. I concede that the feature of no-ads is a hidden or debateble one – you always said free features would remain free – but never promised there would never be any ads.

    6. I do not feel comfortable and would much prefer to have the option to see, what ads are on my blog.

    7. I would gladly pay a reasonable fee for webhosting (I can get it in Germany now – WordPress installed, spamfilter and antivirus included) for less than Euro 8,- per month and a lot of disk space and unlimited traffic.

    8. I appriciate your clarifying the situation. I hope you come up soon with a competitive offer for bloghosting – so my blog can be free of ads.

    9. I do not like the idea of leaving WordPress. It’s a great blog space, with people handling things in a responsible manner. But I loathe the idea of writing about freeware and opensource and having a Symantec-ad on my blog.

  84. Pingback:   WordPress.com: Some Ads are Worth it? by Blogging Pro
  85. sippinwhisky

    It appears many here need to take at least either one marketing or economics class. I do hope people one day get over the utterly asinine notion that everything on the internet is supposed to be free–and ad-free. Kids and fellow bloggers, there is no such thing as a free lunch. (No, some things never change.)

    I see this as an easy call with an easy solution. First, make displaying ads or not a choice for each blogger. Then, elect for no ads at your blog start paying a fair price for your WordPress blog. (BTW, a “fair price” will not be as cheap as you might think.) Or, allow ads at your blog and continue to enjoy WordPress without a cent leaving your pocket.

    I don’t know about you, but I’d rather someone else pay. My mother began teaching me the ages-old business concept of using OPM (Other Peoples’ Money) from the time I was born. And as noted by some others here, ads could well mean some cents/pesos/yen/dinars/francs/euros jumping into the pockets of bloggers.

    So please, bring on the ads! (Also, send a fair-priced “what if” WordPress invoice to all who think everything is supposed to be free on the internet. ‘Tis funny, but those same people don’t seem to have a problem *paying* their ISP each month. I guess they think the buck should stop there.)

  86. sippinwhisky

    Sorry about the second posting, but please allow me to cite more of my mother’s advice. That is, “You don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.”

    Translated: If it’s given to you for free, shut up and take it.

    WordPress generously provides us free blogging space and support. (Support is *NEVER* free.) That effectively renders all arguments against advertisements moot–unless you have no problem receiving and paying that invoice I previously mentioned.

  87. hollywoodphony

    I think ads as an option is a great idea. I, too, haven’t noticed any on my blog. Hooray for wordpress!

  88. Livia

    i love Goodstorm!

  89. moon unit

    I think you should really have more ads. I want you to make more money and hand out custom CSS as a freebie. ;)

  90. shbadr

    No ads unless they’re an option.

  91. myepinoy

    I have one crazy suggestion here. Anyone who says they are favor the ads or havings ads on the free wordpress is okey with them then, let them have the ads for those who do not want it.

    As they say, be careful of what you wished for.

  92. robhoward

    I think Jan has it right. I noticed that GoodStorm will give me 50% of the profit and if I’m wanting to recommend stuff on my blog, and if I can earn something for my writing, then why not? I want the option. As long as I can control whether or not to sell, and I can select and control WHAT I want to sell, then I’m for it.

  93. bianglim

    Relevant ads can be a helpful and further resource for info-seeker.It would be a good thing to have it.If it is necessary,I don’t mind paying a nominal upgrade credit for ads to appear on website.

  94. leachim6

    I ha ve no problem with ads…as long as they are not GIANT POPUP SLAP THE MONKEY ADS haha
    …Stuff is not free :) ads are fine with me

  95. squawkboxnoise

    I have no problems with the WordPress crew placing ads on “my blog”. Bandwidth ain’t free not to mention servers, software etc. The developers of WordPress should receive compensation for their efforts. If I had caveats it would be that I could choose the location of the ads and the theme of the products sold. When I say theme I mean the appeal of the products are geared toward my readers. What good would it do to offer Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth on a conservative blog or Newt Gingrich Winning the Future on a liberal blog?

    I have no desire to “run” my own blog website with all the associated headaches, WordPress.com offers me a venue to “express” myself with little hassle. The heavy lifting has been done for me. Is not the laborer worth compensting?

    My dos centavos.

  96. helenl

    Ads may be a necessary method of paying for internet band width, but bloggers should have at least a modicum of control over which ads are placed on “their” blogs. Perhaps a choice from a list would be acceptable. Right now a blogger who that finds a morally objectionable ad has been placed on his/her blog has only one recourse: Delete the blog. WordPress should be more flexible than that.

  97. azahar

    One of the many wonderful things about WordPress is that, so far, it has remained ‘ad free’ (well, other than the exceptions mentioned earlier – I personally haven’t come across any ads here).

    If ads are going to be introduced as a means to keep WordPress going – and we all want to see it keep on going! – perhaps the fairest thing would be to offer what we have all got used to having so far as still ‘free’ and ‘ad free’ (including new theme options) and then new special options could be offered on a pay-or-have-ads basis.

    Personally, I would find ads very ugly and intrusive on my blog and would prefer to pay a small annual fee so as not to have them there.

    I would find it fair if what is already THERE for all of us remains free of ads, but when you guys come up with more and more great stuff for us – as you always do – then this would be what we could choose to either pay for (to have ad-free) or else just opt to not pay and have ads, if we choose to use those new options.

    I started my blog here because I was already using WordPress as the text manager on my business website – which I do pay for. And after also checking out Blogspot and Livejournal, there was just no comparison. WordPress came out on top every time. And primarily because of the very personal and genuine caring of all you guys running this place.

    Am wondering … the fact that I pay for WordPress already, would this make my blogs free here, and free of ads? Or would my personal blog have to be associated with my website for this to happen?

  98. aaron

    I think ads on the sidebar widget would be a great idea.
    Sometimes adds can get annoying but in general, ads are a good thing as long as they dont climb all over you.

  99. Nicole

    I think most people love your service so much that they will be more than happy to part with a little money to either keep their site ad-free or even for the option to host ads. I am amazed that you offer such a great “free” service and know that it can’t stay completely free forever. But no matter what, I think WordPress will continue to be the coolest.

  100. dpcough

    I disagree with having to pay if we want to add ads. Google doesn’t make us pay to do AdSense so why make us pay to let us use it? I would like to use ads but only if I make money so WordPress, don’t go putting up ads on my posts without my permission.

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