April 5, 2008
When did it become acceptable to blatantly lie in internet ads? Are we just so desensitized from all the Nigerian Viagra Lotteries that it just washes over us? Is it a default assumption now that all banner ads are written by Russian script-kiddies playing with an exploit they found for unpatched versions of IE5? You expect this kind of crap when you’re surfing porn, but guess where this showed up?
My SBCglobal/Yahoo! email account!
I know Microsoft is making noises about buying them out, but are they really that hard up for cash? And to the folks that created this ad: I must say, great job, very cutting-edge of you to avoid all that tired business of letting people know what you’re selling. . . I also like the little reverse psychology here: “Hey, let’s make it look so much like a scam people will think it can’t possibly actually be a scam.” Also, nice way to avoid litigation by placing a button “click here to claim” without mentioning what it is the
customer patsy is “claiming.”
These guys also don’t seem all too interested in repeat business. I know the eighth or ninth time I was the 10,000th visitor to my own e-mail account, I started having a little suspicion that maybe it wasn’t quite accurate.
Oh, and final thought, if the first line of your ad copy is “This is not a joke,” it is probably time to re-think your business model.