reCAPTCHA was my CAPTCHA of choice, and easy to implement in php. However a new captcha for marketers has arrived and I think I’m in love.

Either that or I’m about to make you all hate me. We’ll see :)

Advertisers are not evil.

What do Advertisers dream of? Targeted audience members fully engaged with their client’s marketing message. (oh and track-ability and measurement, but that’s for another post). The question all advertisers are asking everyday: Where can we get the undivided attention of our target audience?

Do you listen to Pandora? Do you notice the audio ads? Do you watch online video, consider the pre-roll or ads during a video (not youtube’s overlays, but hulu’s can’t-get-past-without-watching ads). These ads are something you have to live with to get the free content you so desire. People have to make money to generate high quality content. You’re either going to have to pay (netflix, iTunes) or deal with advertising.

I used to think Ads were annoyances and that there were only to quality of ads: either really annoying (local used car salesman, or the Menards jingle) or fantastic, (apple’s I’m a Mac, or the Mayhem ads). But then I realized how most of the “free” services I use need to pay themselves and the ads/advertisers are the ones shelling out the dough. Consider any program like Cobert, Conan, or even the Tonight show. We wouldn’t have a single program like this if it weren’t for advertising, instead we’d have public tv shows. (Not saying that all public TV is bad, but have you watched the public access channel… ??)

What is a CAPTCHA? and who is reCAPTCHA?

recaptcha is a free anti-bot service that helps digitize booksA Captcha is the annoying task you must do at the end of most forms. Some are simple and fun like “Whats 5 + 3?” or “Please type the word blue in the box below.” reCAPTCHA had the best service in this newer industry. First off it was legible, at lease more legible than Google’s homespun captchas. More importantly reCAPTCHA used crowd sourcing to help accomplish a task. One of the words, the control, was known and you have to get that word right. The other word was scanned in and needed to be confirmed that the OCR software was right. reCAPTCHA uses humans (crowd sourcing) to digitize old books.

If I have to suffer through proving I’m a human then do something with my efforts.

And reCAPTCHA did just that.

I found a CAPTCHA to replace reCAPTCHA

Imagine a marketing message that a user needs to type to prove they are a human.  Just watch the video below and see if it explains why I think this is important.

Essentially they use brand messaging to replace the words used for CAPTCHAs. “Write it down so you don’t forget.” Get it? You have to read and write the brand messaging. Which is perfect for brand advertisers. Engaged audience with a recall. But what if you disagreed with the brand message? What if the message you had to type was: “BP loves the environment” or “I want an F150” or “Drano is right for me”?? Would you type it? Would you bash your head into your computer screen?

Some might consider this old news or super annoying but I am seeing Solve Media’s CAPTCHAs appearing in more places. And I feel that you needed to know about it.

So what do you think?

  • Annoying?
  • The Future
  • Advertisers need to burn, I’ll pay for my content
  • Wow I’ve never seen these
  • Thanks Paul, I wondered what the story was

Feel free to let me know what you hate or love about these. And spew forth your dislike of me now that I like CAPTCHA ads versus solving digitizing book issues.