Friday, February 17, 2012

Advertisements on Media Websites

For my final research project, I would like to do a study on advertisements, and how they are shown to the consumer through various websites.   For example, one website might be Hulu plus, in which consumers pay $10 a month to watch unlimited data.  However, the Hulu plus users still have to watch advertisements.  Hulu’s reason for this is to reduce the monthly subscription price of the service, but is compensation for expenses what the advertisement industry is all about?

In addition to looking at a number of websites, such as Pandora, Netflix, and Hulu, I also want to look into the reasons for the particular advertisements on these websites.  Are they targeting a certain audience to create a particular amount of diversity required by the FCC?  How successful are these advertisements in reaching the consumer?  Is the viewership the number one factor, or is the economics surrounding the viewership more important to the particular media form?

In the case of Hulu, many consumers are frustrated with having to watch advertisements after paying a $10 a month fee.  Is this the case in all industries?  The interesting part to me is that these media sites are trying to reach the consumer, but with the constant bombardment of advertisements, are these sites actually driving away the consumer?

In addition to the websites listed above, I want to look into Facebook and Google, and how they have tapped into the advertising world.  Facebook seems to be trying to tap into the conversations of the people using the site.  Sometimes, this works, but most of the time, it shows how creepy the social media industry has become.  Google now "knows" things about you, but how?  And how does Google use this information to try and sell you something?

I want to argue that the implementation of advertisements on media websites and networks are driving away the consumer because of their manipulation to to sell something while compensating for their expenditures.  As of now, my paper feels a bit messy, so I am looking for any and all suggestions!! Here are a couple articles I read that helped me formulate my argument:


  1. I'm doing a similar topic and I think its such a complex yet interesting topic.
    This article talks about the topic of Google privacy and the consumers conscious choice to engage with these market-driven advertising sites.

  2. Claire, I am also looking at advertisements on social media and other internet sites. It's so creepy how Google and Facebook seem to "know us" with their targeted advertisements. At the same time, we get to use Facebook and Hulu (the regular version) and Google as a search engine for free. It almost seems to me like an unspoken arrangement, we get to use these resources free of charge and advertisers get to target us with ads. Would people be willing to pay for Facebook if that meant that they would no longer be bombarded with ads?

    This may be an interesting article for you to look at:

    Grover, Ronald. "How Many Ads Will Web Viewers Watch?." Businessweek 4143 (2009): 50-51. Business Source Complete. Web. 19 Feb. 2012.

  3. Claire I like the idea. When it comes to the economics behind viewership, I'm not exactly sure if this is what you were trying to get at but, lots of times for companies it is not always how many people are reached by the ads but the type of consumers that are reached by the ads. When I was working this summer my company sold the fact that our publication reached an affluent audience. So for the advertisers is was not always about how many people they could potentially reach but of those people who would be the most likely to consume their products.

  4. I think it would be interesting to look at this from a non-consumer perspective. The idea of targeting audience has changed the advertising industry/ business companies. things like google ads is making it businesses reach out to their customers a lot more quicker.

    Privacy issues are often raised with the abundance of targeted ads in the websites. So you could look at how the ads are invading consumers' privacy. the center for digital democracy (CDD) is one of the groups that is working to promote consumer rights to protect privacy. You could look at similar organizations and see the effects/responses of targeted ads in media websites.