Full Disclosure Disclaimer: A friend of mine on twitter referred me to these guys to use on the blog and website for advertising and also advertising the web design part of bitcoindood.com…. I signed up with the company and have been very happy serving their ads on this site. Some of the links in this article are my affiliate codes. I will be doing a website review of the site after advertising bitcoindood.com… and let everyone know how it worked out as well. Besides being referred by a friend, my main goal for registering was to test the service and see how well it worked before promoting the site with any press. I’m happy to report these guys seem legit, I’ve received a few small payouts already, and am happy to use them on bitcoindood.com….
Hi thanks for taking the time for this interview. A friend of mine on Twitter suggested that I try Anonymous Ads on my website and blog. I have to say, so far so good. I’ve used your referral program for a little under a week and already received my first payout. Thanks 🙂 Could you tell the readers a little about who you are, your relationship to Anonymous Ads, and also what Anonymous Ads is?
Hi, thank you for your interest and for using Anonymous Ads 🙂
My name is Arsen Gasparyan aka arsenische. I learned about Bitcoin in 2011 and got fascinated by the idea of the P2P electronic cash system. I didn’t take it too serious, but it was a nice toy to play with, so I created the first version of Anonymous Ads.
Your BitcoinTalk Ann page describes you as a “Transparent Bitcoin advertising network that doesn’t collect any personal data about it users.” In this day and age that’s very rare. Where did the idea for Anonymous Ads come from and how has it been received by the internet community in general?
The original idea was to make a simple advertising network with features inspired by the Bitcoin blockchain itself: no user accounts, everything was public, irreversible and append-only. We generated a unique bitcoin address for each pair of <advertiser’s ad, publisher’s ad unit> and used the blockchain to determine the probabilities of ads being displayed on each ad unit.
The network got some traction, but various problems became obvious too: blockchain capacity appeared to be quite limited for our use case, users were not using the features we had expected them to use, but they had other expectations and requirements. So I realized that advertising was not simple at all and partnered with friends to rebuild the service (and we have been working to improve it since then).
I’ve been using you guys for about a week. I already received my first payment. It was small but I liked that fact that I didn’t have to wait to accrue a lot of money for a payout. Other programs make you wait till you reach a minimum amount of say $10.00 or so. This can take a long time for a small website, or someone with limited traffic. Receiving small micro payments is a really great thing for small webmasters. One of my sites took almost a year before I made anything from Ad Sense or Amazon. I’m thinking about incorporating your program into all my websites. Do you only accept bitcoin and cryptocurrency related sites, or can anyone participate?
Everybody can participate, no prior approval is needed. Just embed the code and generate impressions from the unique (in the scope of the whole network) IP addresses to start earning. After that our moderators will evaluate your site and move it into relevant categories (that may increase your earnings drastically). The highest CPM is for the Bitcoin category (you can see it in the catalog), but all sites are welcome.
I see you can control the types of ads you display on your site. This is a nice feature for people who may have objections to adult material or gambling ads on their website. I like that I can control what’s advertised on my site. I also like that you can offer different products on different sites. Do you have any restrictions on what can be advertised through your network or is it pretty much anything goes?
We try to protect visitors from malicious and illegal ads. Sometimes the line that distinguishes good from evil is blurred, but people who try to advertise scams risk their own money. NSFW, gambling or shady ads are being tagged as such (and displayed only on sites that allow them).
Many companies restrict different websites from participating in there advertising networks. For instance the old warez sites always had a problem finding advertisers or sponsors, and the same goes for people in the adult industry. Do you have any restrictions on the types of websites that can participate in your advertising network? Could I use your service on an adult site?
We don’t take the responsibility for the content of your site, but we put your ad unit into appropriate categories and let the advertisers decide whether they want your traffic. So, yes, you can use our service on adult sites, we have a category for those in our catalogue.
For anyone that might be interested in doing advertising with your company could you tell us a little about your pricing and what an ad campaign might cost through Anonymous Ads?
The price of the traffic fluctuates, we publish it on the stats page. Please note that our default metrics are based on the globally unique IPs. That means that you are likely to receive more traffic than you expect, because the visitors, that are not unique in the scope of the advertising network, might be unique in the scope of your ad.
Just try it out, you can create an advertising campaign in matter of seconds, no registration needed!
For publishers or people that host your ads, how are the payments determined? Is it a pay per click, revenue share, or based on commission? Could you explain the payout structure a bit?
This is not an easy question to answer. We are not pay-per-click neither pay-per-impression advertising network. You can think of us as pay-per-day advertising network: advertisers set the daily budget for their campaigns to get a respective share of traffic that matches their targeting criteria. Our algorithm distributes the advertising budgets among the targeted ad units with respect to their estimated relative size (that is determined based on the mentioned amount of globally unique IPs and a few other metrics).
Revenue sharing is also part of the payment model. If the ad unit’s earnings are below the expectations set by publisher, then it displays free affiliate ads that may generate additional income. And each ad unit comes with our affiliate link too.
So it is hard to say in advance how much would a particular ad unit earn, it depends on many factors and may take days or weeks to determine.
In a lot of ways your service seems to be a lot like Google Ad Sense. The Dood loves anything that competes with Google. What’s it like being in direct competition with an internet giant like Google?
Any final thoughts or anything you want to tell the readers about Anonymous Ads that wasn’t included in the questions?
Well, maybe its worth of mentioning that despite we don’t require any personal data, Anonymous Ads is less anonymous than Bitcoin because publishers and advertisers expose URLs of their sites that can be potentially linked to their bitcoin addresses and personalities. That’s one of the reasons why we prefer to use the domain name a-ads.com… over anonymousads.com… (the other reason is that it is shorter).
In general we are slowly moving away from the original idea of the user-agnostic service towards a more conventional one in order to make it easier to use. Hopefully it will increase our market share.
I ask all my interviews the same last question. Where do you see cryptocurrency going in the future? Any thoughts, visions, or predictions you might want to share about the future of cryptocurrency in general?
It is hard to make predictions. I think cryptocurrency is a genie released from a bottle, but it is not clear yet whether it is a good or evil genie. It could be the first move of Skynet conquering the world. I don’t believe Satoshi is Skynet, but the idea that due to the free market competition all the wealth will be concentrated in the hands of the AI (without the state being able to redistribute it back to humans) frightens me.
LOL, The Dood has thought the same thing a hundred times. I think it will be up to us, how we will allow the technology to be used in the future. If we don’t pay attention, it could easily be used against each and everyone of us.
Thanks again Arsen Gasparyan of a-ads.com… for the interview and taking the time to answer these questions. Your time and candor in answering these questions was very much appreciated.
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