Contextual Advertising Affected by Katrina

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Heather of Mock On points to yet another contextual advertising oddity, of which there have been many, alongside news coverage of hurricane Katrina. Heather took a screenshot of a CNN story about hurricane refugees living in the New Orleans Superdome being bussed to the Houston Astrodome. Alongside the story appears an ad for price comparison site Nextag with the headline, "New Orleans Superdome - Cheaper Prices." While the ad itself may not be all that offensive, it's not like anyone's going to be using Nextag to travel to New Orleans anytime soon.

by Steve Hall    Sep- 1-05   Click to Comment   
Topic: Online   

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This too happened on SFgate.com after the plane 2 recent plane crashes. They were running ads for airline travel to various destinations. Um....I am not particularly thinking "let's go somewhere on a plane" while reading this type of story. Targeting me while reading this, just irritated me. I contacted them and let them know...and noticed shortly that not only was the airline ad pulled, but so was any ads running next to this tragic story.

Even though I am in advertising, I don't think ANY ad should be running next to, on top of, really tragic stories. It ends up leaving such a negative taste in my mouth. Like do you REALLY need to hock that widget next to stories/pictures of people dying? Maybe it's just me.

Posted by: Suz on September 1, 2005 2:19 PM

I just noticed that same phenomenon next to a similar "Katrina" story. It offered 'gator tours' and 'French Quarter' lodging. It's predictable that once 'automatic' programs are in place, any manual over-ride is less likely to occur or, in a timely manner. But hey, that's the price of progress, right? ;-)

Posted by: Bill D on September 2, 2005 6:59 AM

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Posted by: Linda Lane on September 5, 2005 4:28 PM

Unfortuantely there was also contextual ads that talked about visiting new orleans. There needs to be monitors at these companies that visit these sites to ensure that these things do not happen -- because its extremely unpleasant, and not funny.

Posted by: Pace on September 5, 2005 5:01 PM







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