eBay Contextual Ads Can Be a Bit Too Graphic

Aug 22, 2006 • 7:47 am | comments (2) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Contextual Ads

eBay launched eBay AdContext a while back and ShoeMoney is currently running those ads on his blog. When I went to his site yesterday, I notice that one of the ads (aka listings) had a racy image of a woman in a bikini (or at leas that is what the ad implied). You can see a screen capture of the ad here.

The ad was contextually relevant, in terms of the service selling web site submission services on a site mostly SEO related. But the image the eBay seller uploaded with his listing, was not contextually related to the ad, nor the site audience.

Should eBay allow merchants to control those images? I think they have no choice in that matter.

Should eBay display those images in the contextual ads? I think they are taking a huge risk by doing so.

Forum discussion at Search Engine Roundtable Forums.

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08/22/2006 03:21 pm

Of course the picture is not out of the line. The image is uploaded by the seller and eBay has little control over it. As for it being not relevant to their listing, if it were really irrelevant, the seller will be "punished" by less bidding action. Its free market at its best. Should eBay use image on their banner ads? Of course! That is the whole point! For buyers to see the image and want to buy the item.

Barry Schwartz

08/22/2006 03:25 pm

Well, according to Google's and Yahoo's TOS for their contextual ad programs, this would be in direct violation. The question is, should eBay tighten up on the images part of the contextual ads or not? Dominic, you obviously think eBay is doing a swell job...

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