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Commercial Advertising in the Forums

Engaged ,
Sep 16, 2010

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I am under the impression that advertising a service or a product of interest to forum members is frowned upon. I do see some of this going on, but the posts stick, so I assume there is a threshold of sorts that allows some to pass.

I sometimes want to indicate certain images are available and the price. Is the link to a web site ok for such purposes, and how is this different than simply posting the info directly?

Thanks!

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Commercial Advertising in the Forums

Engaged ,
Sep 16, 2010

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I am under the impression that advertising a service or a product of interest to forum members is frowned upon. I do see some of this going on, but the posts stick, so I assume there is a threshold of sorts that allows some to pass.

I sometimes want to indicate certain images are available and the price. Is the link to a web site ok for such purposes, and how is this different than simply posting the info directly?

Thanks!

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Sep 16, 2010 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Sep 16, 2010

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Over in the Dreamweaver forum, when someone new asks about adding online sales, there are usually several answers pointing to various shopping cart programs and portals... and I will mention PayPal and post the link (not doing so here) to the web store I wrote for my wife, and one example of using PayPal

Since other people do similar, I have never had any negative comments at all... but this is in reply to a specific question, not a message that I start saying something like "Go to my wife's web store"

In various fora, when someone asks about doing a particular function, I will post links of software I use (did not write, or sell, just use) and never a negative comment... again, I am one of many comments

I will GUESS that if you are answering a specific question by saying "what you want is available here" you SHOULD be OK

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Sep 16, 2010 0
Engaged ,
Sep 16, 2010

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Thanks.

But coming on to a thread and saying, maybe even in the Lounge "I have now have such and such available" and give the links or info, that is also ok? I see this at times for third party software so that is why I decided to ask.

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Sep 16, 2010 0
Enthusiast ,
Sep 16, 2010

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Hudechrome wrote:

Thanks.

But coming on to a thread and saying, maybe even in the Lounge "I have now have such and such available" and give the links or info, that is also ok? I see this at times for third party software so that is why I decided to ask.

Hudechrome,

I guess:

1/ If it's in answer to a specific question and points to a third party solution, absolutely no problem.

2/ If the above, but points to a solution you sell, again, no problem as long as you're not actively promoting it and, ideally, if you also point to a couple of other solutions – if available.

The problem is with actually promoting your own commercial website or product. To explain a bit... For example, there's a site called projectseven. They make extensions, templates, etc. for DW. Now, if they were to post saying: Announcing a new blah! blah!, it wouldn't go down too well. However, if while answering a query on availability of flyout menus, they were to point to a relevant solution on their site, it would be ok. Particularly if the answer also gave a couple of other links.

But yes, it is a kind of grey area in some cases...

Hope that helps...

sD

Edit: I think, a lot also depends on pointing to relevant products as helpful and effective extensions/addons/plugins to that particular Adobe product as against an open spam or a competitive product.

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Sep 16, 2010 0
Engaged ,
Sep 16, 2010

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Also looks like it depends on how well you are vetted with respect to Adobe.

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Sep 16, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 16, 2010

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Hi all

Personally I think it all boils down to intent. There needs to be give and take and common sense should prevail.

Sure, if you have just arrived in the forums and the only posts you ever make are hawking your product(s), you are going to be viewed negatively and as a spammer. But if you are an active forum participant and are far more frequently assisting others with solving their issues, then you will be viewed as being a beneficial presence and folks don't mind suggestions for products and the like, as long as the products pertain to the Adobe product.

For example, I don't mind seeing links to Dreamweaver extensions if the person posting the links actually offered a solution to an issue I posted. But I wouldn't want to see links to Dog Grooming sites. (And I'm a dog lover)

Actually I've even suggested competitor's products and shocked folks in the thread where I've suggested them. But even this is in Adobe's interest. If the Adobe product can't do what the poster is asking about and a competitor's product can, I'm not doing Adobe any favors by cramming whatever product down their throat. But it's helpful if I know of a product that can and I suggest it.

Cheers... Rick

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Sep 16, 2010 0
Enthusiast ,
Sep 18, 2010

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Hudechrome wrote:

Also looks like it depends on how well you are vetted with respect to Adobe.

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Sep 18, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2010

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Rick,

Actually I've even suggested competitor's products and shocked folks in the thread where I've suggested them.

We see a lot of this in the Premiere Elements forum, where a poster might have footage, that is tough to edit in PrE, and another product is a better fit. We do not hesitate mention if a better product exists. If things get totally away from Adobe products, most of us will suggest posting to a non-product specific forum on video production. So far, Adobe has been very lenient with such recs., and I do agree that it is in their best interest that the OP's get the best possible info. The user who passes on PrE for Sony Vegas today, might be ready to move up to PrPro CS5 next year.

Hunt

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Sep 18, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2010

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2/ If the above, but points to a solution you sell, again, no problem as long as you're not actively promoting it...

Yes, the slope can get a bit slippery around this one. I have been questioned by a few MOD's on my affiliation with some programs, and services, like DigitalMedia Converter (shareware), and SmartSound for music production in PrE & PrPro. As I have absolutely nothing to do with either, and am just a satisfied user of each, there has never been a problem. Still, the necessary questions were asked, and I appreciate that, as it helps police the fora.

OTOH, we have one respected poster on an Adobe forum, who offers great advice and step-by-step tutorials, but also sells a service. Obviously, his commercial end does show up, when one accesses the tutorials, but no one has ever complained. In most cases, this poster is actually sharing his expertise in creating in the Adobe program, though he also sells those pre-made too.

Hunt

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Sep 18, 2010 0
Enthusiast ,
Sep 19, 2010

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the_wine_snob wrote:

Yes, the slope can get a bit slippery around this one. <snipped>

Yes, it's all a kind of twilight area. The only thing i can say is, "Kudos to Adobe!". They seem to be taking a positive approach to this. It would be so easy for them to get heavy-handed but, on this issue at least, they're not.

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Sep 19, 2010 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Sep 19, 2010

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Could it be that the nerit if of the moderat

ors and not of Adobe?

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Sep 19, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 19, 2010

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It's to the credit of both. There's some really good people at Adobe as well!

The only valid complaints I've heard about Adobe are:

  1. The fact that this forum is not the best piece of software on the planet. I don't think any of us are in the position to judge whether picking Jive was the right choice. We simply do not have all the information. Yes, there's a lot of problems with the forum software, but I think most of us have more or less gotten used to the quirks. There's always the hope that it'll be updated someday, and things wil get better (or worse...)
  2. Support went downhill for a while. For what it's worth, I've seen a significant effort to improve that. One area is employee participation in the forums. There's a number of forums where the biggest participators are employees. Additionally, direct emails to adbecare@adobe.com seem to be effective. I have no idea what the state of phone support is these days. Luckily I don't need to call them.

So other than these two points, I'm really tired of hearing Adobe is the source of all evil. They do do a lot of things right...

Harbs

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Sep 19, 2010 0
Mentor ,
Sep 19, 2010

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They share that distinction with MS about 60-40 with MS being the greater

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Sep 19, 2010 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Sep 19, 2010

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I wasn't talking about all evil in the wor

ld. I was talking specifically of one topic related with these forums. Forums which, if Adobe has any intention of seriously improving, they would have at least given us a slightly less outdated version of the software.

And the fact that most of us have got used to the many bugs in the forums does not change the fact that there has been no significant improvement in them since the first trial version. I am sure this is not a choice of the moderators; in fact, many of them have introduced improvements themselves.

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Sep 19, 2010 0
Sep 20, 2010

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they would have at least given us a slightly less outdated version of the software.

We are still working on that.  There are some internal problems of um, understanding about how and why the forums work.

(and don't get me started on the blogs)

We have had many bug fixes in the forums, and done some minor upgrades since first moving to Jive.

What we haven't done is a major upgrade, yet.

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Sep 20, 2010 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Sep 20, 2010

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Chris Cox wrote:

...

There are some internal problems of um, understanding about how and why the forums work.

(and don't get me started on the blogs)

...

How? I doubt there is anyone who knows. Why? Don't you believe in miracles? I do, and this is one of them.

Sorry, I couldn't resist answering that part. For the rest, I'd better keep silent...

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Sep 20, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 20, 2010

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What we haven't done is a major upgrade, yet.

That line scares me.

While I have had issues with Jive, as it exists here and now, I worry about "major upgrades."

I'll keep my fingers X'ed, my mouth shut, and just see what happens.

Good luck to all,

Hunt

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Sep 20, 2010 0
Mentor ,
Sep 20, 2010

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They need to go to 4.X of the Jive clearspace software  supposedly all the bug we have have been cured.  (whether there are any new bugs, who knows).

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Sep 20, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 20, 2010

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Phillip,

You could be correct in this, but still - I fear. I have lived through several forum changes, and cannot recall any, that made me feel better, regardless of the intentions.

Still, I have slogged along, and will continue to try and do so, regardless of what tomorrow brings.

Hunt

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Sep 20, 2010 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
Sep 20, 2010

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Bill, in practical terms, Adobe forces clients to remai

n updated. So, why isn't the same philosophy applied here? We are not talking about a major upgrade of the forums; just about any update of the software that drives them. If that introduces new bugs, well, I at least have also got used to getting them fairly frequently.

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Sep 20, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 21, 2010

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Claudio,

It's rather like "the devil that you know vs the devil that you do not know... "

Now, I am all for improvements, and some others seem to feel that the newer versions of Jive ARE better. I have not knowingly encountered the new Jive, so cannot comment.

So long as we do not loose all the great threads, I really do not care that much, and will try to learn to live with whatever comes along.

Hunt

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Sep 21, 2010 0
Advocate ,
Sep 30, 2010

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Hudechrome wrote:

But coming on to a thread and saying, maybe even in the Lounge "I have now have such and such available" and give the links or info, that is also ok? I see this at times for third party software so that is why I decided to ask.

Some users would object to someone proactively announcing their own commercial products, but the main problem as I see it is that if one person is allowed to do this, then the doors are open for everyone to do it, and then the forums would be used a a marketing vehicle even for large companies looking for a free way to market their products.

I personally have no objection to someone pointing to their commercial product as a possible solution to a question that has been asked as long as that person is active in the community and not just a call center for a large company that parses forums, for example, for the word "filter" in order to discover opportunities to tout their own filter products.

Adding a link to one's commercial website in one's forum profile is one way to attract attention to one's own offerings.  Then hope that other uses will recommend them in the forums

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Sep 30, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 18, 2010

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I think that the MOD's have to make a call on this.

As John T. mentions, I often post links to Web sites for SFX, music, stock background motion Assets, etc., and point out that some are commercial, while some are for free. Same with various programs, say file conversion programs for PrPro. So long as the links are germane to the thread, and address requests from posters, I think that the MOD's leave them alone. Remember, this is just my feeling and observation, as I am not a MOD on any forum.

OTOH - there are enough real spam posts to keep the MOD's busy.

Hunt

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Sep 18, 2010 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 19, 2010

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Yes. There is a threshold of sorts.

It really depends what they are offering and how. If someone is a regular contributor, and mentions his own product in an appropriate place, most moderators have no problem with that.

If the only posts a user ever makes is for their own product, basically all moderators will treat that as spam -- especially if it's posted in an unrelated thread.

If someone is offering services of simple use of the product on which they are posting, it's generally considered spam as well.

Ultimately, it's the call of the moderators of the specific forum to decide if it's spam or not...

Harbs

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Sep 19, 2010 0