Thesaurus.Reference.com is a Synonym for Spammy.Ad.Site
We have a few clients that sell products that are not labeled as “cheap” but they are considered inexpensive. The problem is very few people do a search for the term “inexpensive”, they usually use the search term “cheap”. But you don’t want to put the word “cheap” in the text so you hope the search engines will figure out the semantics if you use word similar to “cheap” such as “inexpensive”. So I went to the online site http://thesaurus.reference.com and was very surprised to see the amount of advertising on the site and in some cases how far off that advertising was.
Of course every one has the right to earn a living and capitalism is the fuel of our country, but there has to be limits to the commercialization of a website, especially one that is an academic website, or so I thought. But even if you allow the number of ads they have displayed, the sneaky way in which they try to trick you into clicking is reprehensible.
If you click on the image to the left (view it larger) you will notice that the advertisements are the first links you will see to click. Luckily in the subject matter of text ads the ads themselves were so far off from my search term (Homemade Jerky showed up for a lookup of the word “cheap”) that I didn’t click them by accident. But I did additional searches and could have easily been fooled. Some of the ads actually had the clickable ad link read, “Synonyms For” which might lead an unwary Internet traveler to click it.
I’m certainly not idealistic enough to believe that advertising on the Internet will go away or even believe it should. Too many people feed their families and make their living through Internet advertising. No, I’m simply saying a website owner should take responsibility for the ads they show their audience and the consider the number of advertisements on the page. At some point, too many ads make the website in question extraneous, extrinsic, immaterial, impertinent, inapplicable, inapposite, incidental, inconsequential, insignificant, marginal, moot, nonessential, peripheral, pointless, tangential, unapt, unconnected, unessential, unimportant, unrelated, wide of the mark…well, you get the point.