Artemy Lebedev

§ 41. Six ways to make use of porn tricks

October 6, 1999

An information gateway is highly recognizable by its mere externals. So are a catalog, a home page or a search engine. The same goes for porn stuff. It always catches the eye and cannot possibly be mistaken for anything else, since a porn website hardly ever looks like the CNN home page.

See also: § 25. The thing called format

The study of the basic technological and visual features of the porn industry’s format helps a web builder learn a number of tips that may come handy.

Tip 1. Don’t place more than two huge banners (468×60) on a page.

Placing two large banners close to each other is strictly prohibited. If there is no way to make do with only one banner, make sure there’s a great distance between them (e.g. one at the top and another at the bottom of the page). Sometimes five or six banners are placed in a row, which is one of the primary features of a porn site. Some never bother to keep up their reputation and are mad to get the impression rate as high as possible.

Tip 2. Don’t post more than 5–6 88×31 buttons.

The reasons are similar to those indicated in the previous tip on standard banners. If there is a pressing need to extend thanks to 60 other websites, make a separate “Links” section and list all of them inside it using hyperlinks without graphics.

Tip 3. Try your best to avoid opening links in new windows.

An urge to open a brand new window is the foremost evidence that the website owner is afraid of never seeing the visitor again. If the website is not worthwhile, it is doomed to be forgotten. It should be up to every user in which window he or she should open the link and whether it should be opened at all.

Tip 4. Opening new windows in response to closing the main window is strictly prohibited.

Sometimes you get as many as 10 new windows opened instead of the one just closed (by the webmaster’s reckoning, the user will get spoon-fed another bit of advertising before he or she closes all of them). The webmaster is then in for a nice kick in the pants.

Tip 5. Don’t open “supplementary” windows.

These are a common scourge of all agencies providing free hosting services (the “supplementary” window normally features a banner). The user’s first inclination is to kill this window without waiting until its download is complete. Many web builders believe this window should contain an advert of some event on the website, or a “site control panel.” The overwhelming majority of users never get a glimpse of this sort of stuff, since keeping one’s conditioned reflexes at bay is a tall order.

If you need to open a brand new window (which normally has a fixed size), let it pop up in response to some actions by the user (for example, after a click on the “Navigation” link). At any rate, a new window should not open unless it is absolutely unavoidable (as it is when the entire website is limited to this particular window and its size).

Tip 6. Don’t mess up with the usual look and feel.

Don’t let a window open full screen, removing the standard navigation and the menu. The user must always be able to press the “back” button, and there should be nothing preventing him from doing so.

There are two kinds of websites especially prone to use porn technologies: gambling and travel sites, which is quite explainable. Gambling sites are usually made by a Joe Dumpkin to cash in on banner impressions, while travel sites are usually run by firms whose sole target is selling as many cheap tours as they can.

Hence the rule: design should be efficient without foul play.

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