I've replaced the Google ads on this site with an ad for my company. I'm interested if that negatively impacts the site in any way.

In default mode, Ning runs Google ads, for which they get revenue. Alternatively, Ning lets you pay $20/month and either run your own Google ads, put something else in the space, or leave the ad space blank. Unfortunately, if you leave the space blank, you can't use it for anything else... It just becomes dead space.

The K12 Computers ad is smaller than the Google ads would be, but does it change the feeling of the site? Do the Google ads seem less obtrusive? Does having my company's ad compromise the feeling of community or objectivity of the site in any way?

My participation in this community, and setting up the site, have been labors of love. Does anyone have a bad feeling about my using the ad space in this way?

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I think you would be better served not posting an ad to your company. Even if there is no selfishness at all, it could easily be misconstrued and be a less-than-positive reflection on the site. Instead, I would say you should have a team of 3-5 site moderators (perhaps who also share the financial burden) and make it very clear that the site does not rest on the shoulders of one company/person. Regardless if it is Dell or K12computers, corporate interest versus collaborative learning community doesn't quite add up for me.

That being said, I value Steve's contributions, labor and insight very much. I just don't think that everyone who enters the site knows Steve.
Steve,

You've given alot to the community with your wikis, podcasts, and now this ning site. By all means use the ad space to promote your company. I would hope that educators who enjoy the work you do would look to K12 computers when in the market for an affordable, refurbished unit. I have mentioned your company to several people.

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