Wednesday Buzz: Don’t Undermine User Expectations

The ad-blocking service AdBlock Plus is getting a lot of criticism this week for a decision to launch an ad network. The problem? They went against user expectations. Also: An insightful video series ramps back up.

Going against the expectations of your users is a recipe for disaster.

Case in point: AdBlock Plus. This week, the widely used ad-blocking platform made a lot of publishers and end users mad when it announced it was going to start selling advertising on its platform.

For its wide user base and the publishers who already don’t like the company’s offering, it doesn’t matter whether the advertising is “acceptable” in the eyes of the company—it’s still seen as hypocritical.

An AdWeek headline says it all: “AdBlock Plus Is Launching a Marketplace for ‘Acceptable’ Ads, but Will It Just Infuriate Everyone?

Now, to be fair, it’s certainly possible that AdBlock Plus’ model could work. But from a messaging perspective, it’s going to be hard for the company to make the leap from blocking ads to distributing them. The problem facing the company is one that every association needs to think long and hard about: How can you shift your business model without angering those who currently rely on it?

And how much goodwill do you lose if you make your fans mad?

Other Links of Note

Curious about Twitter’s decision to focus on live video? Fast Company did an interview with CEO Jack Dorsey that suggests a major mindset change by the social network.

Speaking of social networks, you may soon have another one to worry about: YouTube is now offering a “community” tab to video publishers—an approach that may replace Google+ for plenty of users.

Think like a creator: In a blog post on LinkedIn, Next Connextion’s Lowell Aplebaum, CAE, talks about why the association space needs more creators.

Till Faida, the CEO of AdBlock Plus parent Eyeo. (Handout photo)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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