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About Those Inappropriate Ads

Just a quick note: some of you have written to me to express your concern about some inappropriate advertisements showing up near the comments.

I share your concern.

Disqus has been a good, robust platform for managing our comments. It provides many of our users a single login associated with other sites, gives us pretty decent moderation options, and seriously cuts down on comment spam — something that takes up unbelievable amounts of time in other commenting systems.

But like any company, Disqus wants to make money, especially off of websites with a lot of traffic. They keep finding new ways to turn on new ads on our site. To be honest, these ads, when they’ve snuck in, started paying us without us having to lift a finger. But I’ve always prioritized truth and Catholic values over our need to make ends meet, and I consistently shut off these ads every time they crop back up.

Today, I saw the problematic ads near the comments for the first time. Tantalizing headline with a picture of a scantily clad and shapely young woman? Nope. Not on 1P5, thanks. So I was pretty annoyed when I logged in to Disqus again today to make yet another attempt to shut off the ads and saw this:

Suffice to say, I have a support request in. I’d rather not drop the Disqus platform, especially since it might mean the loss of existing comments, but I’m not going to lose control over what displays here. Stay tuned. If the ads don’t disappear soon, you may see a change in your commenting options.

30 thoughts on “About Those Inappropriate Ads”

  1. You could do a Facebook Comment box, where it adds the comment to the article shared on your Facebook Page, I got Disquis on my website too, for the same reason, to let the people have a voice, I will see if Wix has the add on app for Facebook comment box.

  2. Lately, I have been clicking on the upper right hand corner of the picture of the add where you find an “x.” When I do that it asks you if you want to stop seeing the add and asks you why. I often check off “it’s offensive” or “misleading.” I am no longer seeing as many offensive images and I had been seeing. It really helps.

  3. Don’t switch to facebook. I value my anonymity. Other boards have gone to facebook & have seen commenting dry up significantly.

    • Yes I totally agree, please no facebook commenting. I have not seen any ads, but I also use adblockerplus which is free and can be used for any browser.

  4. I didn’t know about the little “x” that appears in the picture if you bring your cursor there, mentioned in a comment below. Maybe you could have a notice at the end of the articles about the “x” and that clicking it might clue disquis into the fact that that computer user does not appreciate that kind of click through option, and if the commentator below is right that doing this cuts down on their frequency, maybe it will cut down on these kinds of pictures appearing on the site for many users.

  5. Hopefully Disqus will understand that certain ads are not appropriate for certain web pages and will allow you to at least choose the type you want.

  6. Don’t worry. I have no plans to switch to Facebook comments. My current plan is to get Disqus to give me what I want for my site, instead of forcing something on me I don’t.

    And they won’t, we’ll look at the options then.

    • I use an adblocker and wasn’t aware of these ads’ existence. Disqus is a terrific app and like many things Internet may not be around for ever. I have come across some great commenters on Disqus and am happy with it (and of course with this site also). My conscience is clean more or less over this. I hope to contribute more content on Disqus in the future and that should compensate it somewhat. A downside to the system that e.g. Louie Verrechio’s site uses is that you cannot come back and edit your comments after posting.

  7. If you get an ad-blocker you won’t see them, on computer at least. When I look on my phone there are plenty of ads. But in my browser on the computer I don’t see a thing. So, for those who don’t have one, try an ad blocker. It’s a temporary solution in one place. Disqus also does not get money from anyone who has the ad blocked because it doesn’t count as a view – they didn’t see it.

  8. Thanks, those ads are a cause of scandal and I appreciate that you’re on top of this because a lot of Catholic blogs are leaving them up.

  9. It’s quite simple: who wants to stop these ads should Install the free version of “Adblock” on their browser and the issue is solved. It’s free and works fine. In this moment I’m not seeing any ads for example.(sorry for the poor english)

  10. That this has become an issue speaks well of this website and those who form the community found on it. Tough decisions lie ahead for all of us. It brings to mind something I tell my children often – “you can’t unsee what you see, and what you look at might end up being one of the factors as to how long one remains in purgatory, or if one even ends up there.” The devil knows the potential consequences of viewing salacious material.

  11. There are three free pieces of software that should be installed on your browser if you are online (I think).

    Adblock plus

    Then you see almost no ads 🙂

  12. So, an update on this: Disqus has finally gotten back to me and told me that for the privilege of their removing the ads I never asked them to place here, we will have to pay them $10/month.

    It’s a nominal expense, really, but an obnoxious one. Feels a bit like extortion. That said, lacking a better platform or option, I’m inclined to go along. Only so many battles I can fight.

    As for Ad blockers, I just want to say that I do plan to find a way to begin offering advertising slots on the site again, as we’ve had multiple requests from previous advertisers. We vet our advertisers and make sure they (and their ads) are compatible with our beliefs and what we do here. I hope that when we reinstate them, those of you who use adblockers will consider whitelisting us. These are good Catholic companies who advertise here, and I’d like to give them their money’s worth.


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