Comment D5JW Re: I don't think they are going to get much sympathy...


Google lost an estimated $6.6 billion to ad blockers last year


I don't think they are going to get much sympathy... (Score: 4, Insightful)

by Anonymous Coward on 2015-07-02 13:44 (#D3KJ)

Reasons I use an ad-blocker:

a) Ads are obtrusive: although we are (largely) past the days of "punch-the-monkey" and other in-your-face advertising pop-ups, they still are far too pushy and obtrusive. Unless I am going to, I am not surfing the web looking to buy something; I am usually looking for a particular piece of information. Ads get in the way of that.

b) Ads are manipulative: Ads don't just present their product and its features and then let you make a decision about its merits; rather, they try to trick you into wanting it. I know we all assure ourselves that - while the common "sheeple" may influenced by ads, we ourselves are immune. But that's bullshit and we all know it. Advertisements worm their way into your subconscious, subtly influencing us in ways of which we are rarely aware.

c) Adverts use up bandwidth: Some of us are on slow link-ups. Others have data-caps. And regardless of anything else, most of us have better use for our internet connection than downloading ads. Advertisers subsidize their business by making the viewers pay for the privilege of fetching their product.

d) Advertisements are a security risk: Not a month goes by that there isn't another news story about how an advertising network got subverted and served out malware. Worse, because these networks are so ubiquitous, it is not as if you can try to avoid them by only going to the "safe" parts of the web. Even the most innocuous and best-intentioned website can accidentally infect its users if it is partnered with an advertising network.

e) Advertisers harvest personal information: Adverts wouldn't be half as bad if all they did was promote the products, but no; these days they do everything they can to track your movements and likes across the Internet so that they may compile a detailed dossier about your likes and dislikes. Not only do they then use this info to tailor more effective adverts for you (see complaint "b") but they then re-sell this information to their partners. Oh, and you can be sure they aren't putting security first either.

f) Advertisements influence content: Oh sure, the website INSISTS that their editorial content is free from any influence from advertisers, but when there's money involved, everyone is going to check their own words if it risks slowing that precious income. It might not always be obvious, but its there.

So boo-hoo if Google supposedly lost umpty-trillion dollars (as calculated by an advertising company; it smacks of MPAA/RIAA accounting techniques) to ad-blockers. Not using ad-blockers costs me too, and not all of it counted in money.

Re: I don't think they are going to get much sympathy... (Score: 2, Interesting)

by on 2015-07-02 17:02 (#D48B)

I find some small amount of advertising useful. Some new products are genuinely useful, and if you avoid advertising, you'll be the last one to hear about them. And how do you find out about new TV shows and movies you may want to watch? DVR users were the first to find that, if you skip all advertisements, your world just keeps getting smaller.

I can't say I've found myself being manipulated by ads. Instead I'm consistently disappointed when no amount of useful information about the product is presented... They aggressively go for name recognition, and fail miserably to give anyone a reason to care about their product, versus a competitor's. I mostly buy cheaper generic/store brand food & drinks. I only buy cars used, and then only after my current one has proven unreliable. Even more, I simply don't spend much money, and save most of what I earn.

Mostly I'm annoyed with them. Even if they had good information, after about the 3rd time, I'm done, and yet will typically have the same damn ad pushed down my throat 10 times a day for weeks on-end.

Re: I don't think they are going to get much sympathy... (Score: 1)

by on 2015-07-03 02:32 (#D5JW)

Pretty much same here. I don't mind useful, unobtrusive ads. I don't mind occasional brand-recogntion ads. I do mind being punched repeatedly in the eyeball by the same damn ad everywhere I look. Yeah, I'll remember that brand, all right -- as one to avoid.

I don't bother with AdBlock. Between HOSTS, Prefbar, and NoScript, and occasionally "block images from this server", 99% of the obnoxious stuff fails to penetrate my desktop, and what's left doesn't amount to much.

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