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Blizzard puts advertising on the WoW front page

Mike Schramm

Bornakk has fessed up to Blizzard's little slip yesterday of letting gold buying ads sneak onto the official forums. As expected, he says it was a complete mistake, and that Blizzard is taking steps to keep it from happening. I'm surprised this isn't the action Blizzard took from the beginning -- when the ads first showed up yesterday, Blizzard's forum moderators were deleting (and presumably banning) anyone who mentioned the ads. But almost all of Blizzard's fansites (and even WoW Insider) have had problems with gold ads appearing in advertising content outside our control, so it doesn't seem like Blizzard need worry about it. Sure, it was a mistake, and sure, it was hilarious, but there was no reason to hide the fact that it had happened -- especially since there were screenshots aplenty right away.

However, Blizzard apparently still hasn't learned their lesson: they've now also got external advertisements being served right on the game's front page. These ads are served up by the same company responsible for the ads on the forums, and thus clearly they have the same possible problems -- if one gold ad can appear, more can as well. And while the ad that appeared on the forums was not harmful (other than the fact that it linked to a website that offered a service that would get you banned from the game), anytime you're bringing outside content to your own site, you run that risk. Blizzard has decided to monetize their presence on the web, but it's costing their customers a little bit of security as well.

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