Facebook Adds Ads to News Feeds

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Facebook, Inc, recently launched a brand-new ad format, called a “Featured Story,” which dumps paid content – rather than updates from Great Aunt Lynn about her recent biopsy or one of those internet memes – squarely into our news feeds. Worse, these paid advertisements (a.k.a. “news feed) shows the actions of the Facebook users friends and these ads are front-and-center on our Facebook news feed.

Great. More ads.

I’ve been mildly annoyed by the ads (read: “Sponsored Stories”) on the sidebar of Facebook, but have been able to tune them out. Now, when I’m blearily checking to see if I’ve gotten any response to my “Which Disney Princess Are You?” post, I’m bound to accidentally click a Featured Story.

You know what? I’m sick of ads.

Because I have to sell my firstborn son in order to see a movie these days, I do it perhaps twice a year. Facebook, Inc, recently launched a brand-new ad format, called a “Featured Story,” which dumps paid content – rather than updates from Great Aunt Lynn about her recent biopsy or one of those internet memes – squarely into our news feeds. Worse, these paid advertisements (a.k.a. “news feed) shows the actions of the Facebook users friends and these ads are front-and-center on our Facebook news feed.

Great. More ads.

I’ve been mildly annoyed by the ads (read: “Sponsored Stories”) on the sidebar of Facebook, but have been able to tune them out. Now, when I’m blearily checking to see if I’ve gotten any response to my “Which Disney Princess Are You?” post, I’m bound to accidentally click a Featured Story.

You know what? I’m sick of ads.

Because I have to sell my firstborn son in order to see a movie these days, I do it perhaps twice a year. And as I’m drooling over my gigantic bucket of movie popcorn, waiting for the movie to begin before I dig into the million-calorie deliciousness, I’ve noticed an alarming trend. Before I’m even able to watch the previews for movies I’ll never see, I’m inundated with fifteen minutes of commercials. ACTUAL commercials, not just previews.

While the actual movie plays, I can clearly see that the lead character drinks Pepsi (the drink of choice for superheros everywhere!) and uses a Mac computer to frantically recover lost documents. Thank goodness that Mac works, or the world would’ve come to an end! And I’m beyond thrilled that the Ford SUV is capable of fending off bad guys, because I know that it’ll safely escort my family everywhere.

Ugh. ENOUGH with the ADS.

I try to escape them by watching a couple music videos online. Yeah, I’m old school – I still watch the videos. I notice that Britney Spears, like me, LOVES Swarovski jewelry and wears her very own perfume, while dripping with diamonds from Bvlgari. That’s after I’ve closed out the google ads, which cut off half screen, at the bottom of the video.

So I take a quick trip into Chicago, where I live. I climb onto the El Train after staring at an ad for a lawyer who specializes in bankruptcy clients, and rather than make eye contact with the mentally ill guy threatening everyone on the train as he prophesizes about the end of the world (perhaps he should buy a Mac and drive a Ford!), I stare at the walls, hoping for some nice graffiti to take my mind off it all. Instead, what do I see? Ads for pregnancy crisis centers. A couple for more lawyers. Some advertising an online degree in something or another.

To escape the ads, I pop onto my Twitter account, to complain bitterly about the ads, when I’m blasted by “Promoted” Twitter accounts and sponsored trending topics. Thanks Twitter, but I don’t exactly want to hashtag, #ILoveWalgreens because that’s just…well, dorky. Nor do I want to follow Walgreens, Target, or Express. Thanks, but no thanks.

Eventually, I give up. I pull out an old book – a real book, not eReader – and only then am I able to be free from advertising.

Finally.

Comments (23)

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  1. Crystal.Ritchie

    3 years ago

    Ads make it feel like we’re being bullied into buying shit. Seriously. And can I just say that 90% of the time it takes me a good 6-12 months to actually notice what the ad was for???

    Comment
  2. benjamindsearle

    3 years ago

    I know! I hate the feeling that I’ve seen an ad before even worse when it’s one for something that I still can’t quite identify. It means I’ve been tuning it out long enough that my peripheral vision is used to it now.

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  3. iHubby

    3 years ago

    I think Zuck-dawg needs to chill it with ads. He is getting enough revenue from us “liking” everything from “The Bachelor” to “Sea Snails”.

    COOL IT WITH THE ADS. Yes, you may be the CEO (b**ch) but you don’t have to treat us like our last name is “Winklevoss”.

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  4. mpekinjay

    3 years ago

    I get that we need ads, but they just get pushier and pushier.

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  5. SarahBeeC

    3 years ago

    Yes. Everything you just said. 100x yes

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  6. FromTracie

    3 years ago

    This is why books are the way to go. Books are safe. Books love you just for being you – and not because you will buy more stuff.

    The ads that happen before the previews are the most annoying. I hate them.

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  7. JHBtook

    3 years ago

    Ads are the #1 reason I DVR everything I watch. That way, I can at least pretend to ignore the superhero drinking Pepsi (which-gag). I understand advertising is needed to promote stuffs, but do I really need a 20 min long commercial break? (Answer: NO)

    Comment
  8. thepsychobabble1

    3 years ago

    The last book I bought had a preview for the next book in the back. It urged me to buy it come 2012. EVEN THE BOOKS ARE IN ON IT

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  9. www.lostinidaho.me

    3 years ago

    This comment was brought to you by…

    I agree on the ads. Google+ started doing it a few days ago, and then stopped suddenly… Maybe they’re testing the waters?

    Too many ads, not enough money to buy all the things… leave me alone!!!

    Comment
  10. lucidlotus

    3 years ago

    I had to watch part of a show on live tv last night and I almost couldn’t handle it. I had forgotten what it was like to be inundated by stupid ads selling crap I don’t need.
    I didn’t know that about Facebook, but it’s one more reason for me to back slowly away and never go back.

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  11. TheBoldBlend

    3 years ago

    Very well said. The more annoying the ad the less likely I am to buy it. Pop up ads in particular or anything blinky on the side of a blog.

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  12. chibi_jeebs

    3 years ago

    Ugh! Seriously?!? This may be the final nail in facebook’s coffin. Not impressed. >:-|

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  13. mooivrouw

    3 years ago

    You know what? Yes. Just yes to everything you said. I am so tired of having product shoved in my face. It makes me want the product that much less because I just can’t stand to look at it. So many great songs have been ruined by ad agencies that play them on top of a montage of their product being used. So many fun online activities have been ruined by a constant barrage of ads interrupting the fun. I’m not opposed to a little product placement, but there’s a line. The ad agencies crossed that line years ago.

    Comment
  14. b303tilly

    3 years ago

    Well, ads are GREAT!!! They drive you to read real books. I love real books, so these lame ads are actually doing the world a favor. By making us read. Sweet, sweet books. Yummy, delicious words.
    *this comment brought to you by Jameson*

    Comment
  15. brittanies

    3 years ago

    I do understand the ads on facebook and that kind of junk, because let’s face it, they’re free services. But they are definitely overdoing it by a lot. Sprinkled in the newsfeed is too much!

    The commercials before the previews at the movies are too much too. And it’s usually 20 minutes of pre-show advertising, (for those that get there early) and another 20 once you think the show is about to start, then the previews. I mean come on.

    I like to hide in books too to get away from it all.

    Comment
  16. sandsys

    3 years ago

    That’s why we watch our movies at home–we can fast forward through anything we don’t want to watch. Still see some of the product placements but they’ve become so common I sometimes don’t see them anymore either. The first one I was ever aware of was in Princess Bride many years ago so this is not really a new phenomonen.

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  17. daffodil0127

    3 years ago

    Aunt Becky, try the add-on socialfixer.com for whatever browser you use. It eliminates the ads and you can customize it in various ways including eliminating that annoying sidebar scroll and aligning the page, customizing backgrounds, putting posts from similar sources into tabs, etc. It’s free.

    Comment
  18. c8h10n4o2

    3 years ago

    I’m personally a big fan of adblocker plus. I didn’t even know that Facebook had ads until I heard people complaining about it.

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  19. OriginalWacky

    3 years ago

    Just one more reason for me to avoid Facebook like crazy. I only go there if somebody specifically asks me to, and even then it’s a brief visit.

    I’m SO tired of advertising everywhere. I feel like it isn’t even a way to get me to buy things anymore- and if an ad campaign is particularly irritating, I will avoid that company completely.

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  20. KarenMarrs

    3 years ago

    Agreed. More books. This world has forgotten the feel of paper in their hands!

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  21. SassyPantsMomma

    3 years ago

    That is why there will always be room in my budget for DVR. I love being able to fast forward through commercials!

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  22. MTGracie

    3 years ago

    Yay for real books!!! No ads, and they don’t crash or go blank on you because you forgot to charge the battery.

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