Outrageous WordPress Ads

UPDATE: This post doesn’t really apply now that I’ve got my own website for Earth Baby. I’ve just left it here in case anyone still wanted to read it. 

I’m absolutely livid.

Today I looked at one of my older posts, because somebody had commented on it, and I was presented with this message at the end of the article.

I knew that WordPress have a special option for bloggers to earn money from their writing by getting ads on their blog. Some people earn a full time living wage in this way. I decided not to, because it’s totally inappropriate for my blog. I criticize advertising and consumerism, not to mention many specific unethical companies. So it would be ridiculously counter-productive and hypocritical to then earn money from adverts. But as you can see, I got this message saying ”Occasionally, some of your visitors will see an advertisement here.” Confused and angry, I clicked on the ‘Tell me more’ option.

It turns out that even though I decided not to earn revenue from my blog by allowing ads to encroach on it, WordPress have been going right ahead and making money for themselves by sticking adverts on my posts! Without my knowledge or permission! God knows how long this has been going on. Apparently logged-in WordPress users will never see the ads, but other readers will. Obviously I wanted to check out what other people would be seeing, in the box where I got the above message. In Internet Explorer this is what I got.

I almost fell on the floor when I saw this. Fucking McDonald’s! How fucking dare they! Plus Samsung, and two other random companies. This is not okay. Why haven’t I got any sneering comments about this glaring hypocrisy? It must be obvious to any reader that this is completely against the philosophy of Earth Baby.

To help me check out the scale of the problem, my boyfriend searched through my posts on his computer. He didn’t find any more ads, and I breathed a sigh or slight relief. Then he realised he had AdBlocker installed, which was doing its job of blocking them out. He changed to another browser and tried again. Sure enough, not just some but every single one of my heartfelt posts had an advertisement on the bottom. They were for random products, and even banks.

WordPress offers a No Ads Upgrade to ensure against these commercial intrusions, for the sum of $30 per year. Great. Make me pay money to have what I thought I was getting anyway. I can’t even afford that at the moment, as I’m pretty much skint until my student loan comes through next month. I guess I’m going to have to either fork out for that, or stop using WordPress. I don’t want to give up blogging. I could use another platform I guess. But I don’t like Blogger, and they probably do the same thing anyway, come to think of it. I’ll plan to get my own website I guess.

I’m so upset and angry about this.

Needless to say, if you’re a WordPress user reading this, then this is going on on your blog too, unless you’ve already got the bloody upgrade. If you’re not from WordPress, then I’m so sorry about this – I’m incredibly embarrassed and feel like my words have been violated. There’s probably an ad showing on this post. Ignore it. I don’t want it there.

6 thoughts on “Outrageous WordPress Ads

  1. Tegan, I learned a couple of months after I began blogging that my blog had ads on them because WordPress “supports” itself that way to give us free blogging. I got a lot of wonderful advice from another blogger on how to make the switch and get ad free while not having to pay for my own domain in addition to owning the name. Btw, while I am signed in on WordPress I do not see your ads, as you probably don’t on other WordPress sites when reading from your computer.

    1. Yes, I never see them, that’s why I didn’t realise what was going on. So do you pay for the ad free upgrade? Also, I get that WordPress needs to support itself. But as they didn’t tell me about the ads – which I think they should have – I just thought they made enough off other upgrades to keep going that way…

  2. I am surprised they want £30. But if that is a year’s subscription then it is indeed a smaller price to pay than pushing the giants’ adverts so they can destroy our world. But you really do need your own site. Look into it. Start now and maybe you can earn a way through college/uni? You are talented.

  3. That is really crazy T! You should have your own website anyway and vet the ads you place on there so you can earn from those you trust. However, This will be a job in itself to ‘ vet ‘ companies.

    WordPress have violated your posts and you should write and complain, or get them to give you the funds they have earned – though I suspect that the T&Cs states that you have no right to claim advert revenue and that is part of their service for providing the site ‘ free ‘ to you. Meanwhile, they have sold your soul.

    X!

    1. Hey Wayne, thanks for your support. I have sent them a strongly worded email. At the very very least, the McDonald’s has got to go. I can’t stand for that. I’ll have to wait until next month when I get more money before I can get their ‘upgrade’ i.e. what I thought I was already getting for free. In the longer term I want to get my own website, but there’s quite a lot of work involved in organising that. Hopefully this post can at least explain the situation to my readers until I get their bloody Ad Free ‘upgrade’. Arrgh.

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