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That boggles the mind as well. The purpose of an ad is to be seen. Whether it's seen next to porn should be irrelevant.

I guess, because prudery.




>Whether it's seen next to porn should be irrelevant.

It does not work that way. If some average person sees some brand advertised on WSJ and FT, and another competing brand on PornHub he will attach more 'premium' value to a first brand, and will pay more for owning product from this brand. It's only normal and a part of human nature.

People enjoy content from PornHub, but they want to be associated with something advertised on WSJ/FT/NYT/etc. People want to signal status, not just own a good stuff.


>It does not work that way. If some average person sees some brand advertised on WSJ and FT, and another competing brand on PornHub he will attach more 'premium' value to a first brand, and will pay more for owning product from this brand.

That doesn't explain the connection of "porn" with "less than premium". You call it "normal and part of human nature" but looks like totally cultural.

Historical prudery, and a past that associated looking at adult content with "low status", lesser citizens (and not what the "proper people do", does explain it.

(While we of course know that people of all statuses and walks of life look at porn, from the industrialist, to the bank executive, to the judge).

>People enjoy content from PornHub, but they want to be associated with something advertised on WSJ/FT/NYT/etc.

I'd understand it if we were talking about high status ads, yaugt ads, hi-fi ads, expensive clothes ads, and so on. But most people don't read or care for WSJ/FT/NYT -- that's a small minority. Most people read magazines just as popular/mass market as People, Reader's Digest, CNN, FOX, USA Today and the like, and advertisers have no issue advertising at those.


There is still massive stigma around consuming porn. Less than half of Americans think that watching porn is morally acceptable. https://news.gallup.com/poll/235280/americans-say-pornograph...

Brands don't want to be next to content that has that stigma.


The people with that stigma aren't going to be looking at that content anyway.


They think it's immoral but they definitely still look at that content. For advertisers it's about brand perception and not appearing next to immoral content.


No, but they will gladly indulge in a bit of pitchfork-and-torchery when someone shares a screenshot on Facebook of a Proctor & Gamble ad for baby powder next to a young woman with pigtails and tube socks in the questionably named 'teen' category getting spit roasted.


Oh yeah, nobody would do something they say is immoral, especially when it comes to sex.


> people want to signal status

People are biological animals first and humans at a distant second. It's short-sighted to so brazenly dismiss the long term effects of periodically associating a brand with the strong feelings that come with an orgasm.


>From my experience in dealing with very rich and very poor people of many different cultures, the only people who give a damn about status to that extent are the young and dumb

Sorry, you are mostly wrong here.

Let me present you with example of an ad targeted to 50+ very rich audience. This is an ad directed by Cohen brothers ("Big Lebowski", "No Country For Old Men", etc) advertising Mercedes AMG Roadster and shown during SuperBowl -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=exxaJrtH2kg -- and pay attention to a punchline -- "still looking good". Pure signaling for an older folks.

This may sound illogical, but most people who buy "signaling" products (such as Mercedes AMG Roadster) are in +40 y.o. cohort. They got money to spend, unlike millenials who can only signal status while choosing craft beer on Friday evening.

Also, your guess about me living in my "pristine little bubble" was too personal, tbh, but I'm fine with that. No offense taken here.


> Let me present you with example of an ad targeted to 50+ very rich audience. This is an ad directed by Cohen brothers ("Big Lebowski", "No Country For Old Men", etc) advertising Mercedes AMG Roadster and shown during SuperBowl

These concepts are not mutually exclusive concepts:

- targeting a group of people that are 50+ years old

- for the people that actually buy the cars to be vain, young and dumb, and insecure.

> This may sound illogical, but most people who buy "signaling" products (such as Mercedes AMG Roadster) are in +40 y.o. cohort.

That's not illogical at all; that's mainly who I see in Porsche dealerships and nothing about that contradicts what I said. In that individual statement, I was merely commenting on the set of people who care about their things being associated with a porn advertisement, not the intersection of people who care about status to that extent and have money to signal their status.

> Also, your guess about me living in my "pristine little bubble" was too personal, tbh, but I'm fine with that. No offense taken here.

It was, I'm sorry about that and I've removed it; Frankly, I am frustrated and probably overly sensitive (to the point of false positives) to the trend I noticed in the Bay area where people who couldn't be bothered to leave their home/tech bubble and interact with people outside their comfort zone, remarking on how people the world over work. Their abstractions are incredibly wrong if you just go 50 miles outside the bay area.

Due to having family and their friends spread out over the world and due to having a remote job, I've seen and lived with people of diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds; the Bay rarely understands any of those people except those in their bubble and despite that, it's not uncommon for them to speak with authority on them; I find that audacity infuriating and is something I need to work on.


>That's not illogical at all, that's mainly who I see in Porsche dealerships and nothing about that contradicts what I said.

I don't know, I think signaling is OK, and I don't consider people why buy signaling products as "vain dumb and insecure". I just don't see that anything wrong with that. I mean, you made enough money to choose good, quality product, be that t-shirt, bike or even a car. Why not choose some premium brand with some signaling attached to that, instead of just buying generic nike t-shirt or toyota corolla car? If you like that Mercedes AMG Roadster because you think that it will make you more attractive to chicks (and btw it will, I guarantee) -- and you got money to spare, well, go for it! You made enough money to buy Porsche 911, why drive Honda Civic then?

I see people signaling with their choices wrt premium products, and I don't judge them at all.

>Frankly, I am frustrated with a common trend I noticed in the Bay area where people who couldn't be bothered to leave their home/tech bubble and interact with people outside their comfort zone

I've never visited USA in my life, and do not plan to, so your guess about me being SF resident living in SF bubble is wrong. :) I do work in ad-tech / advertising, though, so I learned something about how industry works. JIC, during my daily commute (I don't own a car and use public transit) I see more people who make $500/month than people who make $5000/month, so no bubble here. :)


I'm not saying signaling is wrong; I'm saying to the EXTENT that someone cares so much that they wouldn't buy it because there may be porn associated alongside it, is a symptom of being in the set of vain, insecure, and young and dumb people.

I own a Porsche, I couldn't care less who they are advertising to so long as it doesn't hurt anyone. Moreover, I've learned with anything that attracts that much attention, it's not signaling any kind of attention you would want. I get really annoying attention, on a daily basis. If it wasn't for the tears of joy that I get from driving it down twisties, I would sell it in a heartbeat.

From my perspective as someone in the 1% of my age group and was apart of the set of young and dumb, vain and insecure people, signaling with expensive items is childishly overrated; it's far more fruitful to signal with kindness, compassion and intellect; any trust fund baby can afford a porsche and be as vapid as anyone else.


Well, I get that you want the world to function in a slightly different way, and you don't want people to associate advertised product to content around it; I'm fine with that. However, the world around us functions in a way where people subconsciously associate the product and content.

This is, in fact, a billion dollar opportunity -- ads on porn sites are so abundant and so cheap, first person who will help sell more premium product by advertising it on porn sites will become a billionaire. Not happened yet, and most porn sites advertise, well, other porn sites. There might be a reason for that (and it's not a hidden cabal of puritans who run marketing departments of well-known brands being haters of porn. trust me, those folks will sell their souls to the devil for 10% uptick in sales).


It's not that I want the world to function in that way, it's that sex is such a fundamental part of our biological nature that I believe it supersedes any human abstractions we place over our animal nature; to the extent where, the unworkable symbiosis you posited, of porn associated with the advertising of well known brands, is wanting the world to work in a different way than it actually does. More succinctly, just because advertisers haven't done it well, doesn't mean it can't be done.

In fact, as this generation of baby boomers dies off, I have a strong feeling porn will become far more normalized and have more prestigious non-porn brands associated with it, so long as more prestigious porn brands can rise up.


Would depend which way the pendulum ends up swinging afa "sex positivity" vs. puritanism in modern feminism, plus of course how mainstream porn develops. Looks to me like it's ending up equally or even more compartmentalized, just for very different reasons.

I mean current moves are more along the lines of dropping topless women from tabloids/Playboy ending nudity, Britain trying to age-limit porn, etc.

Also probably comes down to the basic technical difficulty of targeting ads on websites often browsed in private mode. Which will probably keep being the case for a lot of people, for practical reasons, regardless of how normalized porn might be.


A great deal of advertising revolves around "brand awareness". You may not be selling a particular product to the consumer, but keeping your brand in the mind of the consumer. Understandably so, not all advertisers want their brand associated with adult content.

Where an ad is seen can be just as (if not more) important to the advertiser as the ad itself. So, if your site serves up adult content -- you can guarantee that companies with large ad budgets won't be buying ad space.


>A great deal of advertising revolves around "brand awareness". You may not be selling a particular product to the consumer, but keeping your brand in the mind of the consumer. Understandably so, not all advertisers want their brand associated with adult content.

If all brands allowed their ads to appear next to adult content, then it wouldn't be any special association for any particular brand, just another outlet.

So I guess it has more to do with the historical prudery of some countries, when an ad appearing next to adult content would trigger angry letters to the editor, editorials, and so on from "concerned citizens".

That said, advertisers didn't seem to have much issue advertising all kinds of stuff on Playboy back in the day, or FHM and the like today...


> That said, advertisers didn't seem to have much issue advertising all kinds of stuff on Playboy back in the day, or FHM and the like today...

I guess it’s because Playboy and FHM are somehow considered tasteful and for connoisseurs?


I suppose that was Hugh Hefner's brilliance. That if Playboy was seen as "tasteful porn", then advertising space instantly became more valuable.


> If all brands allowed their ads to appear next to adult content, then it wouldn't be any special association for any particular brand, just another outlet.

Well yeah. Brands aren't going to put in the effort to solve a thorny collective action problem just to open up a bit more ad space. They're trying to make money, not repair broken social norms.


Big brands (i.e. the only companies with budgets that matter) are violently opposed to being associated with anything that might degrade their brand. It isn’t surprising, and it has nothing to do with morals or prudishness.

They are equally put off by pirated content, for example.


Big brands with the big ad budgets tend to be run by or depend on sales to socially conservative people.

See this line from the FAQ on Automattic's ad service:

>> "The ads tend to be broad national campaigns, rather than targeted local or topical campaigns. We have found that the broad campaigns pay better. That said, visitors from countries outside the US and Europe will often see targeted local ads."

https://wordads.co/faq/

Companies like that have to think about sales everywhere, not just in places with progressive views on sex.




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