February 25, 2013

No Advertising Monday



Canadian philosopher Marshall McLuhan, in Understanding Media, describes the "content" of a medium as "a juicy piece of meat carried by the burglar to distract the watchdog of the mind".

By that he meant that people tend to focus on, for example, the content of an advertisement, but miss the changes that advertising generally introduces subtly over long periods of time.

The advertising and marketing industries use professionals that understand our psychological weaknesses, and our deepest desires. Then they target these weakness and desires to take advantage of us.

"The objective of advertising men", said McLuhan, "is the manipulation, exploitation, and control of the individual in order to sell products to unsuspecting consumers."

I may still read an ad-laden blog for a while, but I find they distract from the message. That is why, four years after starting Not Buying Anything, I am still not selling out.

Why I Am Not Selling Out

1. I am opposed to the use of corporate advertising on my blog (and anywhere else). I believe advertising to be mind-numbing propaganda of the very worst kind. It doesn't just get into your brain - it changes your brain.

2. I feel the use of corporate advertising on my blog, (and anywhere else), devalues the message. I don't want to make money with my blog - I want to change the world with my blog... for free.

3. I do not accept merchandise, gifts, favours, or brown envelopes stuffed with cash in return for advertising space on my blog (or on my person, clothes, vehicle, or any of my possessions) because they would threaten my ability to express myself freely. I want to say what I mean, and mean what I say.

4. I feel that advertising money taints relationships, and destroys integrity. Advertising tries to coax the little green pieces of paper out of your bank account and into the accounts of the biggest corporations on the planet. When we choose to play the money game, we trade our integrity and our relationships for more little green pieces of paper.

Unlike most places in the world, this is an ad-free zone, and I intend on keeping it that way.

16 comments:

  1. High five to you! Aside from promoting my daughter's projects, I too have a no corporate ad blog. I decided I didn't want to go that route. Also, all that junk takes more time for a blog to load.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like seeing your daughter's projects on your blog.

      Speaking of projects, I hope the move is going well.

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. Good to hear from another no-corporate-ad blogger.

      Delete
  3. There is an easy way to get rid of all ads on your computer. ADBLOCK. It probably can't be used with anything Microsoft makes (another way I have abandoned "corporate computing" is by ditching windoze and switching to Linux - google either Ubuntu or Mint), so download Firefox to browse the web and Adblock which is and ad on for the program......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I looked up Adblock - http://safariadblock.com - for Safari. Ad-free is the way to be.

      We clicked on damnthematrix above to visit your blog. What a great self-sufficiency project you are working on. We will be following it with interest as Linda and I are always looking for ways to further disconnect from the matrix.

      Delete
  4. Hear, hear! I too don't have ads on my blog.

    I recently spent the weekend with a brand-loving friend of mine, where I had to explain why I don't wear anything with a brand across it. I didn't think she cared that she's a walking advert....;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We have gone as far as removing or covering corporate tags on all our stuff. Amazing what a black felt marker can obliterate.

      Delete
  5. There are some blogs that I've only visited once for that very reason. How can you promote simplicity and take money for ads promoting buying more? I realize there is a huge amount of work that goes into a good blog, so the temptation would is there to be compensated in some way.

    Thanks to You and Linda for making this a labor of love. You are meant to teach and I am here to learn. I hope I can play that forward in some way in my own life. No compensation needed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I understand that some people like to, or need to, make money with their blogs - it is a lot of work.

      However, we find our compensation in other forms, such as the joys of thinking, researching, writing, and discussing. Another major form of compensation that we enjoy is comments, such as yours, from readers. That kind of feedback and support is truly priceless.

      Another reason we enjoy comments from readers is because they give us opportunities to learn. At the beginning of each school year I liked to tell my classes that I considered us all to be teachers, as well as students. We learn from you, too.

      Delete
  6. It IS refreshing when you find someone that still does something (anything) for the 'pure joy of it'. Why can't simple 'satisfaction' be enough anymore>

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We only need to look to children to see what doing things for the pure joy of it looks like - they are experts. They can get engaged in things even though they have no thought for any material gain for themselves.

      It is good to retain the childlike pursuit of life merely for the satisfaction and joy of discovery.

      Delete
  7. Have you ever considered http://tiptheweb.org/ or something similar?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have seen blogs with a "tip jar" so readers can leave a little something if they so choose. I am not really comfortable with that for NBA as I think that any exchange of money would change our relationship with readers.

      It would change readers to "donors", or even "customers". I prefer to think of our readers as "friends", or "neighbours", or "co-rebels", or "like-minded free thinkers", but never "customers".

      I have never seen tiptheweb before, so thank you for leaving the link. It is an interesting project.

      Delete
  8. I have been following your blog since I stumbled onto it and book-marked it about 6 months ago. Although I have never commented, I always appreciate your thoughtful entries and admire the choices you have made to live your best, most authentic lives. Simple living means different things to different people, it is wonderful to have access to so many perspectives. Thanks for what you do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OK - feeling pretty rich right now. Cha-Ching! Your comment is so much better than money, even if I can't buy groceries with it.

      Thank you.

      Delete

Discussion and debate is welcome on NBA. I believe that this can be done via courteous, concise comments relevant to the topic of the post, whether or not they agree with the views expressed.

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