There are new ads

There might be trouble. I’ve already seen a lump of coal with legs go running across the Pharyngula logo, and a frog (it is a nice frog) go hopping across the page. We have not had good luck with ads that try to escape from their cage in a box on the page — send me a note if you’re experiencing annoying obstacles in reading the site.

As long as I’m mentioning site weirdness—we’re also experiencing some slowdowns and annoyances in posting. If you get a “500 Internal Server Error”, don’t assume your comment failed — it was probably accepted, and then something in the server choked. You aren’t alone, either, I also get that error when I post articles, and we’ve got our Wizard Tim working on fixing the problem.


  1. Rienk says

    See, this is why I use AdBlock Plus… I know, I know: ads help pay the bill, but these days most ads are not pay-per-click, but pay-per-load and most adblockers will load but not display the ad.

  2. Rienk says

    And the lump of coal, I hope it’s not one of those misleading ads for more efficient, less emitting coal-based energy, because that’s just a whole bunch of male Bos primigenius taurus manure.

  3. josh says

    I just had that problem on respectful insolence. Maybe it’s a scienceblogs thing

  4. Mooser says

    Stay away from ads that include moving objects or graphics. They interfere with site loading if you are on dial-up. They can also intefere with the browser, “letting go” of the site to load others.

  5. says

    Yeah, the newest legion of overlay Flash ads is a major colon-kinker, not just here but everywhere. They block hyperlinks and are consummately annoying.

    The marketing idiot that thought those up should be shot.

  6. llewelly says

    Every time I read one of these articles, I think ‘HOORAY FOR ADBLOCKER’ which saves me from all that garbage and all the trouble it causes.

  7. Steve_C (Secular Elitist) FCD says

    No problems technically with the ads.

    Coal as an alternative fuel is a bit insulting though.

  8. says

    re: llewelly

    Exactly, I have adblock installed on my firefox and it’s the best godsend ever. For the uninitiated:

    If you have firefox, you can use this to block the most annoying adverts and leave the good ones running. I use it to block everything but text ads and google ads. Everything else just drives me up the wall. Especially those stupid talking smileys.

  9. emkay says

    That was a lump of coal? I thought it was somebody with a black plastic trash bag streaking across the page. Most annoying. None of my ad blocking stuff stopped it, altho I usually don’t see stuff others have seen here.

  10. Carlie says

    Eh? No see ads. Me like adblock.

    Note to advertisers: If an ad is unobtrusive, pertinent, and seems to be something I’m really interested in, I will indeed click on it. If you annoy me, you get no clicks even if I’m desperate for your product. Nyah.

  11. says

    I’ll chime in with another “Yay for Adblocker!”

    At work, I’m stuck using IE, and Scienceblogs pages usually require two or three tries to load properly, possibly due to these new ads. At home, though, blissful adlessness.

  12. Fred Levitan says

    Actually, it’s the Dow Chemical ads that bug me. “See the world through eyes of the poisoned and mutated human element”. (I’m paraphrasing.) The commercial content seems out of sync with the blog. What’s next, ads for GMO corn and ‘safe’ nuclear technology? If this trend continues, I’d encourage you to go back to a stand-alone blog or one on a non-commercial or more politically palatable service, if there is such a thing.

  13. kagehi says

    You want to see something horrible for dialup, go to the stupid site… It *used* to use normal HTML, but they revamped it. Now I think its like 90% flash or something equally horrid and takes 30 minutes to load over dialup (or damn near close to that if you want everything to work on it). If you open another page to try to do something while it loads, that will suck enough bandwidth from the coke site to force you to reload it, to fix all the bits that failed to load the first time… Right now they have something for the new Pirates movie, which if you go to the treasure chest part, to get the “special treasure reward” thing or what ever, then you can enter the code from there, click through most of the pages to get something, but then, in my case, because I did have something else loading in the background, it refused to let me “get” the file, then also refused to let me reload to the same “page” to try again when it hung on me.

    Oh, and back when I got Everquest through them, I had to find a torrent to download because not only did their fracking site, even back then, not work, but Sony didn’t allow resumes on downloads, so unless you had broadband, you had to try to get it all in one go, which when your connection breaks or power fails, while spending 3-4 days downloading the damn file, you are screwed. The activation code at least they gave “prior” to the download, so I was still able to play after the basically illegal torrent finished downloading…

    Frankly, I can’t imagine how some of this crap they do works even “with” broadband. Too many things to go wrong, in huge files, most of which take a few minutes to transfer, even with the fast connection.

  14. Paguroidea says

    That cute little frog finally got to me! I just had to click, and I almost never click on ads. It turns out that the ad is actually very interesting. There are videos about wind turbines in Ireland, photovoltaics in California, and desalination in Algeria.

  15. Mustafa Mond, FCD says

    That lump of coal ad reminds me of Fargo. Maybe next time I watch it, the lump of coal will run into a tree.

  16. says

    Nope, no problem with pop-ups or gallivanting minerals and amphibians. I’m using Netscape 7 (my iMac is that old), and it not only has a built in pop-up blocker, but it doesn’t speak some of the younger javascript languages.

    On the other hand, whatever Google did to improve YouTube means that nowadays embedded YouTube videos screw with loading pages.