Forced Registration?

The other day I made a small rant about what I called Post Hiding. But, several blogs that I’ve visited since have taken this to an entirely new level. It’s what amounts to, give me your email or you can’t read my blog.

I suppose some marketing guru somewhere is espousing this wonderful technique to gain newsletter readers. What they do is you can see their blog unobstructed just long enough to read about 2-3 sentences of their site and then this giant box appears on the screen asking/demanding that you sign up for their newsletter. No where on the giant box is a place to say “No thanks”, “Not now” or “Maybe later.” No where is there a tiny “X” or button saying “Close”. Clicking on the page off of the box does nothing. Scrolling down the screen just keeps the box firmly over the content further down the page.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve spent hours disinfecting my mother’s computer after being infected by a virus from clicking on “No” as in “No I don’t want your XYZ thing” and the virus downloaded anyway. It escapes me as to why Internet marketeers think that people are going to willingly give up their email address (a good one anyway) and sign up to get yet more spam in their inbox from a blog they are visiting for the first time.

There’s no blogger out there that is so all-knowing and insightful that people are going to willingly sign up for their newsletter without being able to read at least one or two posts first. Well, perhaps some of these folks who have established cult-like followings might be able to use this strategy but the typical Joe or Jane blogger out there won’t get very far.

I just don’t get it. Why work so hard to create something of value, get it indexed nicely enough to bring in some search engine traffic and then basically tell folks that they’re not wanted? Even some of the major newspaper websites that have gone to a paid model will let you see the story that brought you to their site.

If you’re reading this, please don’t do this. It might get you a handful of registrations but more than likely it’s only going to get folks to move on to the next site and not come back.

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