Wednesday, June 28, 2006

ecommerce error: table input hidden and encrypted

Here's a rare post, in which the hero, Vaspers, transparently discloses a deficiency, a shortcoming, a confusion about a web object.

I refer to my inability to Copy with my Firefox browser the text on this page:

Misc. Books and Press

I love the promotion text on this page.

The phrase "self-deprecating humor" caught my eye.

Click on that link above and read the promotion copy. Makes me want to buy the book, and I probably will soon. It talks about how they selected the Best Blog Writing, not by number of comments, link popularity, A Listing, or high traffic criteria. They selected the best material, by judging it from high editorial style standards. If "self-deprecating humor" was a standard, this should be a pretty good book.

But my zeal and enthusiasm were soon quenched.

I was unable to Copy and Paste this clever and intriguing promotion text into my blog post here, with all the proper credits and link.

When I went to View Source for this page in my Firefox tool bar, the code indicated: table input hidden and encrypted. Table input hidden? Hidden from the web browser, but displaying on my computer screen, this promotion text.

Why? Why encrypt the product promotion text? See, a really smart ecommerce entrepreneur will realize that a clever description of his amazing product's benefits to users...this is very Quotable Text!

Wake up and smell the coffin. The coffin of your competitors. You now know something they don't know, because chances are, I haven't taught them this lesson. I'm teaching it to you.

EXAMPLE: In the realm of web images, Randy Primm liked my Vaspers the Grate sidebar button "Blog. Beauty. Brains. Bold." He liked it so much, he now displays this clickable promotion button on his Reality Frame blog sidebar. Result: his readers can easily visit my site, and may be attracted by the nice image button.

Why would I seek to somehow "protect" this image, by using hidden values or encryption? To prevent people from voluntarily advertising me, for free? Make any sense at all to anyone out there? I didn't think so.

Wise up. Promote your blog by making it easy for users to Copy and Paste your promotional text and images into their blogs.

And by providing FREE stuff constantly. I'm talking especially to ecommerce sites, but all blogs should strive to do this. Surely you have something to share with your readers, huh? FREE advice, anecdotes, experiences, how to tips, photos, gardening facts, games, philosophical insights, shopping secrets, retail savvy, corporate culture analysis, recipes, poems, cartoons...right?

You are productive, aren't you? If not, learn how. It's fun to be creative in many different realms. My realms that I explore personally are web usability analysis, blogocombat, digital art, computer noise music, deconstruction philosophy, IT consulting, and organic gardening.

If you have published a book, you absolutely need to provide some FREE samples. Choice, and I do mean provocative, brilliant, and unique, excerpts. Entire chapters, the best chapters in the book. Put your best foot forward, soldier! Marketing really is War. (Al Ries & Jack Trout)

Music mp3s downloads--an EXAMPLE

You can, right now, provide your blog readers with tons of FREE, legal music mp3s.

If you don't have your own original music you made yourself, you can go to IODA (Independent Online Distributors Alliance), and register for an abundance of FREE music mp3s, of a wide variety of musical styles, I'm searching for Arabic Ambient Chill today, and post them to your blog.

I'll post one here, as an example for you.

[give me a few minutes, return later to see the IODA mp3 link here]

Here's "Mr. Anonymous" and "Good Vibe" by Mr. Anonymous. I love it when a band has a song about itself. Nuclear Forehead has a song called "Nuclear Forehead", for another example. Rare, but cool. And this song is a reggae/hip hop/acoustic folk song. Lilting, happy summer music: "My name is Anonymous, to you I'm invisible, but inside it's unanimous: I'm always incredible! ...I'm never gonna bring you down, never gonna waste your time, give me one chance and I'll make it worth your while..."

Good lyrical triumphalism.

Mr. Anonymous

Mr. Anonymous

Mr. Anonymous
KAB America


Mr. Anonymous

Mr. Anonymous

Mr. Anonymous
KAB America



steven edward streight said...

Sarah Hatter, of The Best Weblog Writing book, emailed this clarification to me:


Just as an FYI, your rant about our "hidden" table input was...interesting, but actually incorrect.

We've actually made plenty of promotional images available to anyone who'd like to use them, in
fact we did this over a month ago when we first announced the book,
as you can see by the attached screenshot of our homepage.

The words "get some promo code here" are pretty clear, don't you think?

We haven't had any complaints from anyone who's used them on their site.

So, perhaps it's not that we're not smart enough, perhaps it's just
that *you* didn't look carefully enough before passing your judgments
on our business practice?


P.S. If you check our book listing at Lulu and Amazon, you'll find a
20 page preview readily available for anyone to click and read.
Again, something we did from day 1.


steven edward streight said...

P.S. I have an account at Lulu, the downloadable product compnay, and have been working, sluggishly, randomly, on a book of my own.

Very interesting that they're using both Lulu and Amazon.