I'm so sick of banner ads!

I don’t know about you, but I am so sick of banner advertisements showing on Swaylock’s. Unfortunately, at this point, they are the simplest way to pay for the site. And trust me when I say it’s just barely at that…

I’ve been thinking long and hard about how to replace them with a great alternative to generate some real revenue for this thing I’ve been running for close to 20 years. I’m interested in hearing opinions from the community. I have a few of my own – and would like to hear from the community first. Once I get a few ideas, I’ll run a little poll to see where the wider community stands.


They don’t bother me in the least, in fact I don’t even consciously see them.

My experience, exactly.

Use the Google Chrome browser and install the AdBlock Plus plugin and you will never see another banner ad on this site. I didn’t even know we had them here. I had to switch browsers to even see what you were complaining about. I never see them here or on any of the other forum sites I visit. It also eliminates ads before videos on youTube.

I use adblock but only because it speeds things up a bit. I’d turn it off if you asked us to. I don’t think sitting through some banner ads is too high a price to pay for access to this forum.

Looking for ideas on how to generate revenue for swaylock’s other than banner advertising.

I’m all for Mr. Paler to get his “due”. For this site to proliferate to what it is took a LOT OF DOING. He’s earned any way possible to get some dough out of it. I am completely ignorant of the process but it seems about time. Sadly, there are dozens of folks making plenty on drivel at other sites like You Tube. But then again it has always been like “squeezing turnips” when dealing with surfers. The ads don’t bother me and are part of the privilege of coming here for entertainment and knowledge.

Agreed, me and my Russian wife and arab girlfriend aren’t bothered at all by banner ads. I believe it is very expensive to run a professional website and discussion board properly.

The only alternative I’ve seen to ads is a cryptocurrency miner running in the background.
I don’t like the idea of it running continuously, but I wouldn’t mind every post to require the poster do do some mining work.
This would also be an effective spam counter measure, imagine needing to run miner work for a couple of seconds per post.
It might even require a few minutes of work which would not bother anyone if you run it in advance, but it would make it impossible to spam the front page in a few minutes.

Mike, I think it has to be a User Pays system from now on.
You run a very civilised and respected website and I’m frankly thrilled to still be allowed to post here considering the amount of assholes I’ve annoyed.
However , I would happily pay a dollar a month, or maybe 2 or 3, 4 or 5 to continue The Swaylocks Experience, as it is.
Who hasn’t learned something new here ??, or met up with someone from here or been given an insight that’s invigoriated their shaping, outlook on construction or life itself …?

Add a Paypal widget of a dollar a month and see what happens…?.
It Might even deter the spammers ?
You’ve got to ask the people here to pay for something that so good. It really is.

Nothings free.
( except LOVE according to my teen daughter, but she’s yet to meet reality. )

Honestly, doubt anyone really cares about the ads. The spammers just kill this place. This is the only site where I’ve ever seen such a constant barrage of spam attacks. Did you guys piss off someone in the Chinese surfboard business?

I’d gladly pay a fee.

worthy of being repeated. Well said.

I don,t know how much money banner adds contribute to Sways , but to get rid of them and rely on fees from Sways members would in my opinoin be a mistake .

I have to agree with Mako: to seek a way to replace banner ads is to solve a problem that doesn’t exist. Spam is and has been the bane of this forum, frequently threatening to eclipse the stoke of coming here. Banner ads have never done that.

I have not seen a single ad on this site in years. Same goes for most of the websites I view. AdBlock Plus is your friend.
Anyone who doesn’t use an ad blocker is behind the times by a good ten years.

Exactly. The biggest thing this site needs is less spam and more board build threads. An easier way for less tech savvy users to include pictures in their posts would be HUUUUUUGE!!!

What I got from Mikes post was not just about banner ads.
But about self supporting revenue for the site.
Mike also said he has some ideas, so Id like to ask Mike what ideas he has ?

i don’t care about the banners. i’ll even click them on occasion to help get you a penny or two.

working with affiliate networks may be most cost-effective way to get some income, but it’s by no means without work. the idea is that store or brand X is registered with an affiliate network (like commission junction). specific tracking tags are attached to URLs that would go on the site (say everytime “resin” was used in a forum post, a link would be auto-generated to store X’s resin shopping page). if a “resin” link is clicked and a purchase is made by the user, swaylocks gets a small percentage of the purchase. it’s how most successful bloggers/youtubers are making money these days. unless you’re directly selling ads to endemic brands in the surf industry, the generic ad networks won’t really do much. referrals to purchases are where you would probably do best.

back to endemic ads, there are a handful of surf supply sites here that use sways and it seems like a mutually beneficial relationship for sways users and the suppliers - sways gets supplier experts, but supplier experts get access to people who need the supplies. maybe something can be done with that in a fair way?

just trying to put something out there other than “i don’t mind banner ads”

well, OK, but aren’t endemic ads just banner ads with a connection to site content? In which case “I don’t mind banner ads” is still relevant.

So this isn’t a money making suggestion per se, but it is a valid point for improving the forum. Pictures could definitely be improved. Right now the forum accepts pictures under 20 MB. But pretty much everything in the MB range shows up distorted, hence, the frequent complaint, why is my picture showing up sideways, or upside down (for a recent example, check https://www.swaylocks.com/forums/resin-panel-problem, where the pics at 1.87 MB and 1.79 MB are showing up sideways).

On my phone, a Samsung Galaxy, the MB sized pictures take forever to show up, so I often just move on to another thread, rather than wait. I suspect some of the frustration from people with a lack of responses to their picture filled threads stems from this issue.

Pictures are kinda the life-blood of the forum.

Once the pics are downsized to KB sized files, the above issues disappear. I’ve tried to get people to downsize to KBs, but not everybody knows how. When I have time, I will sometimes go through a thread with huge picture files, and re-size the pictures to KBs, but its a hassle. I have to download them to my computer, re-size them, then upload the new pics in place of the old ones.

The other thing is putting pictures in the middle of your text, so you can comment on them as you go. It can be done, but you have to use some html, and they have to be already posted online somewhere, like the above pic which is on flickr.

Or you can post them as an upload in another post, get the url, then using html with the url, place them in the middle of your text, like I did with the pic below. Again, not everyone knows how, or wants to take the time to learn, just to post a thread.

If the pictures issues could be addressed, I do think it would be an encouragement to post more build threads, and improve the overall user-friendliness of the site.

Just sayin’