The 2015 Ad Blocking Report

We are pleased to publish our 2015 global report on ad blocking, once again in partnership with Adobe.
In this report we drill into geographic detail, providing per-country and per-state information on ad block usage rates, monthly active user counts, as well as estimates of the total cost to publishers in many regions. We find that not only has ad blocking continued its fast growth on desktop, but it has also leaped onto mobile in Asia, and will soon go mobile in the West with the upcoming launch of content blocking on iOS.

Download 2015 Report PDF Download 2015 Report Charts

Quick Facts:

  • Ad blocking estimated to cost publishers nearly $22 billion during 2015.
  • There are now 198 million active adblock users around the world.
  • Ad blocking grew by 41% globally in the last 12 months.
  • US ad blocking grew by 48% to reach 45 million active users in 12 months up to June 2015.
  • UK ad blocking grew by 82% to reach 12 million active users in 12 months up to June 2015.

Since our last report, the existential threat of ad blocking has become a pressing issue in the boardrooms of publishers across the world. A concerted response is required, founded upon a renewed focus on user experience, and enabled by secure ad serving technology like PageFair’s. We hope this report will continue to help publishers, advertisers, consumer groups and technology vendors come together to define principles that support a sustainably free and open Web.
Note: the PDF and slideshare versions of the report were updated on 26 August 2015 with minor corrections. The figure in the chart on page 6 has been updated, replacing the Q2 2015 median with the June 2015 median for Germany. This brings it into consistency with the data in the tables on page 17.

Comments
  • Until advertising sellers get responsible and weed out all malware ads, all intrusive ads, and don’t delibrately slow down sites by trying to increase their revenue. I will continue to block every possible advert for my own safety. I don’t look at advertising except to confirm it is advertising and not part of the page (a grave sin committed by far too many publishers).
    Advertisers and publishers have failed to take into account annoying their customers & potential customers is stupid, irresponisble and ultimately counter productive they will FAIL.

  • If I were a publisher giving free content, I’d block my content to these ad blockers. It’s high time people realized that there are no free lunches even on the Internet. Personally, I don’t use any ad blockers and quite like many ads that I see. It’s only when they’re repetitive that I tend to tune off them.

    • A more reasonable response is that of those sites who gently insert a message like “Hey, we see you are using an ad blocker. Would you like to support us another way?” The message also has a link to subscription options, etc.
      Such a message me tells me the site owners care. For them, i will re-evaluate my use of a blocker, and much more often than not, turn it off for them.
      There are too many free sites that are nothing more than click bait, stealing content from others and barraging viewers with questionable ads. Those sites deserve to die, and the sooner, the better. If it takes ad blockers to do it, so be it.

    • Yes, and the solution I have already implemented is to just disguise the adblocking. A small greasemonkey script effectively hides the fact that I am using adblock, and as a bonus makes the “Hey, we see you are using an ad blocker” notices go away. For a while, when the ad-block notice showed up, I tried it. I turned adblock off, and every single time, without fail, was barraged with flash adds, music playing, and giant adds in the middle of an article. I am done playing.
      I use adblock plus, adblock, ghostery, noscript (on firefox) and have a host file with thousands of ad servers listed. The host file is extra special; it prevents the browser from even being able to contact the ad servers, and isn’t trackable like adblock is.
      For added fun, and mainly because I was bored, I turned an old computer into a firewall, and even added extra ad-blocking to the firewall. So after all this work you want me to turn ads back on?! Not a chance.
      The publisher is not in charge anymore. No amount of trickery on their part will get in between infuriated users and their ad-blocking. No begging, pleasing, demanding, or threatening will stop me from blocking ads.
      You have to remember why people block ads. Google sells static adds that show up in the search results. They also show up on the side of their gmail inbox. They are static, silent, and still. Other publishers started using ads that popped up in front of us. It got in our way. Then they started playing music. Animated flash adds started playing before the website even finished loading. Then everyone’s favorite, full page adds that showed up after I started reading the page. Youtube? 30 second add to watch a 15 second clip. Adblock takes care of those as well.
      That was the last straw. I will continue to block ads until the static adds return. No music, no flash, and definitely no full page ads. My time is valuable. If publishers are so adamant in wasting my time, I’d just as soon ignore the site for good. Now they’ve not only lost ad revenue, they’ve lost viewers as well.
      All it takes to make all the annoying ads go away is a few simple clicks, and suddenly, silence. The ads are gone. I can enjoy my internet in peace, and leave you to sort out your broken business model.

      • Adblock, small greasemonkey script, ghostery, noscript, host file etc. – all this sounds excruciatingly painful to me compared to seeing a few ads here and there. But if that’s your idea of enjoying the Internet, that too in peace, so be it.

          • Good luck with selling that idea! It takes one click to block all ads again, and in any case ABP is very much not the only adblocker around – even Safari on iOS offers blocking via the ‘reader’ function. And as Dranon suggests, its all completely painless, unlike trying to deal with ads that don’t behave again and again and again.

          • Aren’t you contradicting yourself here? If all it takes is one click to block all ads, then why is it so painful to deal with ads that don’t behave again and again and again?

          • The clue is in “again and again and again”. One click* vs repeated action. No brainer really. And you rather miss the point that I really can’t stand most of the drivel pimped by ads and wouldn’t click anyway. I simply dislike the model. No one has ever really tried micropayments seriously, priced at a level that reflects the actual revenue lost without advertising. I regularly donate to sites I really do like if they offer that as an option. I don’t have a problem with small, per page payments as an alternative, but many others do. I won’t however pay in lieu with either tracking or personal data, or by viewing a drip drip of drivel. Life’s way too short.
            *EDIT: perhaps you misunderstand ‘One click’ is for all time, not per page.

          • Ah, micropayments. My favorite topic. Or it used to be until around 2009. At the time, Walter Issacson, the former Managing Editor of TiME magazine, had hailed them as the “savior” of the online publishing industry. Many publishers tried it out. Contrarian as I usually am, I wasn’t too drunk on the micropayments Kool-Aid and had predicted in my blog post at the time that micropayments could only be an enabler, not savior, and that it would help the industry only if enough people wanted to pay for content in the first place (http://sketharaman.com/blog/2009/02/20/micropayments-%E2%80%93-saviors-or-enablers/). Not that I wanted things to turn out this way but, several years later, micropayments has virtually become history because a combination of factors including authentication friction and loss of SEO juice has unwhetted the appetite of people to pay for content even though I thought it was priced reasonably (http://gtm360.com/blog/2012/02/05/why-pay-for-content-when-you-can-get-it-for-free/). Reputed publishers that relied on paid content (e.g. GigaOm) have downed their shutters. So publishers are back to advertising. Not that I love ads or anything but c’est la vie!

          • I responded to you stating “excruciatingly painful” and you respond with something completely different! I really don’t care what they do I just care that I am not being inundated with ads! So far its worked great for me. If a few ads slip through here and there due to being white listed I don’t know because I JUST IGNORE THEM!

          • What is excruciatingly painful to me seems to be so easy for you and vice versa, so I dropped that line of comment. Like you, I know many people who desperately hate ads, take a lot of trouble to install additional software and make many tweaks so that their ad block software works, yet, when they hear that marketers get their ads whitelisted by paying off ad block software providers, like you, they say they couldn’t care less. How sensible is that? Now I know exactly how marketers keep thriving. As for ignoring ads, you’re not the only one I’ve heard saying this. In fact, in the decade-long existence of Google Ads, I’ve rarely come across anyone who says they click online ads, yet clicked ads drive almost 90% of Google’s revenues, which has been growing at a steady clip year after year. How’s that possible? The only I see of reconciling this disconnect is by believing reports that over 90% of ads suffer from click fraud. But that would cast such a huge aspersion on the integrity of business practices of such a venerated company like Google that I don’t want to go there.

          • You seem happy to see ads. Some aren’t. We should live in a free world where people have the choices they want.
            The choice I’d like is to pay a little for worthwhile content, delivered to me on my terms. Those terms include no ads. (Which do genuine damage.)
            Instead we are faced with a bit of a monoculture, ads everywhere, no choice but to block them or block the sites they come from. A definitive way of identifying those sites and not getting them in search results would be preferable?

          • Can I, as a stranger, come to your house and tell you how you should arrange your furniture? Publisher owns its website. Visitor does not. As a visitor, you have the choice to stay on the website or get out of it. You have absolutely no choice in how the publisher chooses to monetizes its website. Why is it so hard to understand this? (That said, as I’ve highlighted in one of my earlier comments, many publishers tried to monetize content via micropayments 4-5 years ago but it didn’t work out for a vast majority of them, so they’re back to ads).

          • Ignoring the poor analogy, I’d be delighted if I couldn’t see most of the properties on the web. (Those with a pure advertising focus especially, they tend towards content free.) Not in search, not in my browser… The bad stuff makes the little that is good unfindable/unreachable.
            To paraphrase your analogy, if you don’t want the general public to see your house, don’t put it on a main street with the doors thrown wide open and people allowed in.

          • My point is not about not showing my house but what visitors can and can’t do after they enter inside. As for your expectation for not seeing websites with ads on your search results, Google (and other mainstream search engines) provides the search results and Google earns nearly 90% of its revenues from those very same ads that you don’t want to see, so good luck with your wish. That said, there could be some niche search engine (DuckDuckGo?) that might fulfill your wish.

          • I know people who haven’t used Google more than once or twice a week for several years. One reason, they saw +/-97% revenue from advertising and took action. I’ve heard it said that, post Snowden, non American search engines are a good idea, like IXQuick and StartPage. I know some who take a Duck-Duck-Go suggestion to indicate shallow analysis.
            That’s enough for me. This conversation is over.

          • I do get to choose what makes it through my browser, and I do get to choose which websites show ads on my screen.

          • I’m hearing a lot of conflicting reports: (A) Some, like you, report that their adblock software – AdBlock Plus or equivalent – blocks *all* ads. (B) Some others have reported that it blocks all ads they find intrusive, implying that it does not / cannot block ads that they find non-intrusive (without elaborating the types of such ads). (C) Still others have implied that adblock software can block only banner ads. (D) There are published reports that say that large advertisers are paying big money to AdBlock Plus to whitelist their ads so that their ads are not suppressed. From A thru’ D, the impact of adblockers on publishers would range from “apocalypse” to “hardly matters” (since we’ve been hearing for a long time that banner ads are anyway dead.).

          • In my experience Ad Blocker [not Ad Blocker Plus] gets pretty much everything.
            Weeks go by, I see no ads…my browsing is an ad-free experience.
            The occasional one slips through, but not even in ones and twos…just ones, and that pretty rare.

          • Yes, I gathered as much and checked out Ad Blocker Plus yesterday! But, since I run a marketing company, I’m in two minds about whether I can shun ads, so I didn’t go ahead and install the software.

          • Which you forgot to say, in fact it is optional. You do not have it is chose by default and you can just as easily turn it off.
            So even if the are getting the big peace of the cake, we still get what we came in the first place.

      • I’m getting a reasonable experience turning of my ad blocker and using Ghostery. The worst ads are gone, the natives (which I believe pay the site owner better) remain, and those sites that detect ad blockers don’t detect Ghostery.

    • Blocking adblockers doesn’t work either; for that there’s ‘Anti Adblock Killer’. All it actually does is to antagonise people, something the music industry knows the effects of well.

      • If website visitors can come up with Anti Adblock Killer, website owners can come up with Anti Adblock Killer Detector as well! As for antagonizing people, well, yes, that’s true but going by my experience with Retargeted Ads (http://gtm360.com/blog/2015/06/26/retargeted-ads-or-retarded-ads/), neither the advertiser who pays for ads nor the publisher who receives money for ads really cares. Freeloaders frankly overestimate their power when, really speaking, they’re just the product that website owners will seek to monetize via ads or in some other way. Businesses have also realized that there’s a big difference between what people claim they’d do and what they actually do: LinkedIn’s popup ads are one of the most obtrusive online ads I’ve come across in recent times (http://ow.ly/i/6KnG7). Many people including me keep complaining about them (https://twitter.com/GTM360/status/509967287554932736). Nothwithstanding all that, LinkedIn’s user count has grown by leaps and bounds even after introducing this ad format. Go figure!

        • So in your estimation adblocking etc is no big deal for either publishers or ad networks, who are presumably coining it. So why all the continual handwringing about lost revenue and sites going bust?
          Of course none of this even begins to address their other bête noire; the massive scale of click fraud prevalent across the web and apps, and which happens even on walled gardens like Facebook.

          • The smart publishers use Adblock Killer and Anti Adblock Killer Detector and other technologies to solve the problem. The others publishers first deny the problem, then moan about it and finally perish. There’s nothing new about that: Smart businesses across most industries use technology and smart business practices to gain competitive advantage.
            As an advertiser, while click fraud is still a problem, its severity has reduced drastically from the levels I used to suffer from when I first started advertising online around 7-8 years ago.
            In case you meant the problem of visibility and ads viewed only by bots rather than humans, I agree that’s a bête noire today. As an advertiser, I mitigate the problem by recalibrating my ad cost based on benchmark visibility level (like many advertisers do with click fraud). As a digital marketer, I’d like to point out that, since purchase decisions are now beginning to be made by algorithms, advertisers must pay for all ads, whether they’re seen by humans or bots.

          • I’ve yet to see a site where ads aren’t blocked and I’ve no idea what your ‘other technologies’ are – every time someone tries to foil adblocking, there’s a swift response, and with current delivery methods thats unlikely to change.
            I mean ad clicks by bots, with the ad not seen by a human but the advertiser having to pay. As I understand it, its causing greater problems than adblocking, eating into the credibility of the business as a whole. There are some solutions, but they’re a long way short of perfect, not least because the extent of the problem is poorly understood and a lot of people have an interest in it remaining so. I’d be surprised if you really knew how much you’re being screwed.

          • I’d be surprised if you really knew how badly you’re getting screwed and that too by people whom you’re trusting to take care of your interest: Just as readers are relying on AdBlock Plus and other technologies to block ads, the providers of these technologies are selling readers out by striking private deals with dozens of advertisers to unblock their ads: http://www.businessinsider.in/Google-Microsoft-and-Amazon-are-paying-Adblock-Plus-huge-fees-to-get-their-ads-unblocked/articleshow/46109705.cms. End of the day, if freeloaders don’t pay for content, publishers will die and freeloaders will be left with no content to freeload. As for advertisers, they’re used to paying $$$$$$$ for print and TV ads and not even knowing whether their ads were published. At least with onlne ads, they pay only $$$$ and, even if bot clicks is as high as 90% as it’s being projected, they’re sure that at least 10% of their ad spend is hitting the mark. Besides, as I pointed out earlier, bots are increasingly making purchasing decisions, so it’s not as though the balance 90% of their ad spend is getting totally wasted.

          • Screwed? You evidently misunderstand if you think there’s much ‘trust’ involved. ABP / Eyeo make money from unblocking some ‘acceptable’ ads – key word there – that I can still choose to block with a single click; I’m not out of pocket, I don’t see ads, they make a pile of money – fine by me, but not fine by others. If I don’t like that, I can pick an alternative blocker – there is after all a wide choice. Some people are unhappy about what ABP have done, frankly I’m not and just don’t see the fuss as long as I don’t see the ads. Making money isn’t a crime; taking the mick really should be.
            The notion of ‘selling out’ (quaint idea!) implies a degree of trust and ethics that I’m afraid is a thing of the past when it comes to global networks; you trust to the best of what you know, not what you’re fed, then make your choices. Ad networks seem to think they can expect users to stick to a set of rules they have unilaterally laid out, whether or not they are reasonable. Guess what, they can’t. More fool them for ‘trust’.

    • Then let those publishers who don’t like my use of ADBlocker deny me access to their site.
      No problem [for me] at all.
      But, it’s a problem for them, since the metrics they use to encourage marketers to advertise on their site includes: i} The number of visits ii} The number of unique visitors and iii} The number of page views they attract to their site.

      • Kudos for a very sensible comment. In fact, blocking content to adblock users is exactly what I’d do and said as much in my first comment: “If I were a publisher giving free content, I’d block my content to these ad blockers.” But I recognize that I could be in the minority. There could be many unethical publishers out there who fail to net off adblock users from the pageview figures they claim to advertisers and media buyers. I agree with you that blocking content to adblock users would present a problem for them. To that extent, it’s in the interest of the publisher-agency-advertiser to gloss over the adblocking behavior. Hopefully, the recent furore on this subject kicked off by PageFair / Adobe / iOS9 will reach the C-Suite of leading advertisers and they actually put pressure on their CMOs to dig deeper with the pageview metrics submitted by their publishers.

        • sketharaman: “There could be many unethical publishers out there who fail to net off
          adblock users from the pageview figures they claim to advertisers and
          media buyers…”
          “could be”‘s an interesting turn of phrase in that context, sketheraman, as is “unethical”
          I’m in the ad. business, as are several members of my family–one of whom is a media buyer–and we none of us have any knowledge of any publisher who nets down their Google Analytics or Comscore metrics for ad blocking, or bots for that matter.
          Let me go further: Web ad pricing has so fallen through the floor that it’s beginning to get close to its true value of a fraction above zero $.
          No seller would want–ethical or unethical!–to have their mass numbers netted down for any reason whatsoever in that kind of pricing environment.

          • @disqus_yVbvZlRROf:disqus: TY for your detailed comment. I didn’t think the ethics situation was that bad:( Like you, I’ve come across many people from the ad / media buying industry who report that ad rates are very low on web (even lower on mobile). But, I’m intrigued about one thing: How has Google, a company that makes nearly 90% of its revenues from ads, achieved over US$ 70B in annual revenues and how does it manage to keep growing quarter after quarter? Should we take reports of 90% click fraud seriously? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

          • Google makes money because it massively undercuts every advertising medium there is.
            And there’s a reason it sells low–and why web advertising sells low–because:
            1] Approx 40% of all ads are ‘seen’ by bots.
            2] That leaves 60%
            3] Allow 10%-20% for outright fraud…saw-off at 15%, that leaves 45%
            4] Of the remainder, 20-30% use an ad blocker, leaving circa 32% to be seen.
            5] Of that remaining 32%, few care about the ads…
            6] …and some love them so much they over-idulge = wasted ad. impressions.
            And the reason Google keeps growing: The web keeps on growing. If/when the web plateaus, Google will lose it’s energy…it’s still make humongous amounts of money, but the growth will have left…
            …and growth is what makes businesses…..errrrr…..errrrr….grow.

          • “The web keeps on growing.” I think that’s the bottomline. On another article, I’d highlighted this fact, especially in the context of emerging countries where more and more people are joining the Internet every day and, at least for a few months when they’re new to the Internet, are unlikely to install adblock software.

        • “If I were a publisher giving free content, I’d block my content to these ad blockers”
          That’s how you’re going to break the internet.
          Look, we don’t don’t like this intrusive advertising and tracking. Don’t tell us we’re wrong. Figure out a better way to make money.

          • Look, we don’t like freeloaders. We WILL block our content to people who install ad-blockers. They can figure out a different place to get their content.

          • Awesome mate, between greasemonkey ABP and Ghostery; I generally don’t worry about websites such as yours blocking me.

          • Find better way to find free content. Nobody owes it to you. Someone has to pay for content creation. Until now you paid by ‘allowing to be annoying and brainwashed by ads’. Now prepare for paywall and subscription fees, or less good content. Maybe when they make you pay for every single click on the internet, you will understand that advertising based ecosystem wasn’t so bad.

          • It’s not perfect, but driving content creator into the ground is not a solution. Advertisers will find other ways to spend their money and rub ads in your face. But publishers have no other means of surviving, but start charging you for content. Someone has to pay.

      • Why do they need to deny you access? Just don’t go back. Don’t use sites that have ads on them. Simple. You are stealing from them by blocking the ads. Just don’t visit. You should only give your Visit and Unique Visit to sites that “don’t sell out”.

        • Eugene: “You are stealing from them by blocking the ads”
          Rubbish.
          You are nothing more than a shill for the people who make massive amounts of money from this, many of whom doing so by outright fraud.
          There is no moral issue looking at sites using an ad blocker…
          …and I highly recommend others to do the same.
          In fact, here’s the URL for those of you who are interested: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/adblock/gighmmpiobklfepjocnamgkkbiglidom
          And, those who still think there’s a moral issue involved in ad blocking, note that this extension comes to you from Google…
          …and if it’s OK with Google to block ads, then who am I to stand in the way of this world-wide movement to block ads!
          Next thing you know, some buffoon will be suggesting I must watch all the ads on TV, too…
          …and you know where you can put THAT idea!

          • You are missing the point entirely. Ad Block does not affect advertisers.
            They don’t pay for the ads you don’t see. It is not like fast forwarding commercial on your TV. TV channel already got paid for that spot, and will continue to bring you your favorite show. You favorite website WILL NOT get paid for the ads you blocked. “massive amounts of money” on yeah. Go try making any money running the content site, produce some quality content and try to get paid for it. Some shill that it.
            Banner that you saw and ignored – wasting Corporations money, pays to content creator for their labor.
            Banner that you blocked – only benefits big corporations, as publishers dont get paid and will be forced to platforms where ads cant be blocked. Case in point, right now, Apple News. Apple allowed Ad Blockers to force publishers to shift content from WEB to their News app, where they charge a fee for every ad shown.
            You don’t like the advertisers tracking you – go stick it to them. Vote with your dollar – don’t buy their product. WASTE their money, CLICK ON THEIR AD (GASP!). Sign a privacy petition. But punishing your favorite site for it – that’s plain stupid.

          • “You are missing the point entirely…that’s plain stupid”
            I’m fortunate to have met someone of your intelligence, so it’s my luck day.
            But your intellectual muscle notwithstanding…nor are you getting my point.
            My point: I’m blocking all ads.

  • Just for the record, I use AdBlock, Ghostery, and Click-To-Plugin, all on OS X. Turning off AdBlock will eliminate the “adblock in use” message I mentioned in my other post. However, Ghostery still blocks the ads by blocking the tracking networks and beacons (including PageFair), because in addition to not wanting to be bombarded with ads, I really, Really, REALLY, REALLY don’t want to be spied upon (tracked). And Click-To-Plugin blocks Flash, for those sites antediluvian enough to still use that fossil.
    For the really, truly odious adverts, I edit my hosts file so that those domains cease to exist on my view of the Internet. See also http://winhelp2002.mvps.org/hosts.htm
    If I could get ads anonymously, I would feel differently. For quality sites, that anonymously serve their own ads, that are related to the material on the site, I do not try to block them. But since ad networks are bound and determined to spy on my, and deliver unrelated ads, I feel I am within my rights to thwart that spying.
    Edward Snowden is a great patriot, and he has taught us much.

      • Exactly this. Relevancy is either based on content or tracking. Contextual ads don’t perform anywhere near as well as ads that are targeted to the user.
        And this is the fundamental problem for the industry.

      • He does and it’s not hard to provide. If you can build a web site and you actually have a relevant company that wants your traffic, you can put the ads on there yourself. I provide this type of advertising on a lot of sites I’ve put up and I also use it as a fallback on other sites in the case that an ad blocker is in use.

    • Lately, I’ve turned of my ad blocker and just relied on Ghostery. The ads are tolerable. What I see are native ads, so I assume the site owner is getting a better paycheck for posting them.
      @Erik – Relevancy can, and should be based on the nature of the site. Native ads succeed at this.

    • I’ve just added pagefair to my hosts file. I site I use regularly and actually moderate is completely unusable with ads. Starting today, the site apparently started using pagefair. So, in order for me to perform my moderating duties, I’m forced to block pagefair.

    • I could say that, ad blocking just block ads from showing but sites still have your data and continue collecting it and use it for other purpose, like Facebook timeline or google search where results you are more likely to want are brought first, this data is corrected continuously and its the same used to serve ads as well enhance your user experience in a website, the only way for sure to avoid being tracked it to use private browsing or simple request the companies not to tailor their ads according to your history, they usually stop at least the big ones (Google, FB, twitter, you tube), the small ones that serve annoying ads like popups, auto play videos just block them because most of them do not have such a mechanism. The reason for this is because, i believe a balance need to be struck between the content creators and consumers, no need to create a had stance on one either side. Respect the consumer by providing reasonable ads, 1 per pages (5-10% give or take of the page, relevant to content not tailored to user history, provide an opt out mechanism where users can pay for your content to take way ads plus vet all your ads for malware and viruses), clearly indicated as an ad stop confusing readers and for consumer respect that the content creator needs to earn something for his troubles during content creation and also to get you more quality or be able to continue. This way its a win win

      • This, you’re only enabling the massive giants to be more massive and more invasive. A random blogger running OpenX advertising has no way of collecting, storing, and attaching your data to you – but the big websites do it all the time and no one bats an eye.

        • Also a random blogger will act as a conduit for those giants to collect our data by using their tools like Google Analytic and even adsense, this way the giants gain your data without even visiting their website.

    • Tracking doesn’t equal spaying you twit. It helps marketers understand how to best customize your web visit and improve your experience. If yo dont want to be tracking IRL dont drive a car, don’t walk into a store, dont walk down a sidewalk, dont use an ATM, don’t use a credit card, dont use Google maps or Android, dont use an iPhone, dont use Facebook messenger
      Advertising cookies are almost always anonymous while the above are all personally identifiable and easily tied to you.

      • Are you seriously so stupid that you think a tree falling in the woods doesn’t make a sound? You’re not a twit, you’re a f*ing idiot.

      • You are stealing from me everytime you place an ad or anything else of a commercial nature. This is absolutly still valid. If you feel ads from silly little useless startups and other big startups such as Uber (that STILL hasn’t turned a profit to my knowledge…guess they didn’t learn anything from the crash of the hubristcally named “new economy” in 97’….that was pure delight for many people).
        From Tim Berners-Lee the founder of the web (though to hear the pro ads people whine about their cruddy little business failing youd think THEY invented the web for their RIGHT to impose advertising).
        And please don’t try to justify your pro-ad view by saying “that was then, things change” because that is a good saying for the justification of ALL internet ad companies going under.
        Anyway, enough ranting, from Scientific American: “Tim began to get concerned, though, about universities and companies like Microsoft creating their own networks that might compete with the Web, or charging for content, which would violate his core principle: that everyone should be able to communicate freely with everyone else. To stop this from happening, he got management at CERN to release all of his source code under a general license so that any programmer anywhere could use it for free”.
        Two words stand out; freely and free.
        History eh?

      • It’s a good thing tracking doesn’t equal spaying, or the internet would be finished. In all seriousness, advertisers and webmasters are actually hurting themselves in the long run by abusing a good thing. If a site can’t make it with ads that are not malicious or annoying, then they should just stop producing the content and get out of the business. There is way to much crap on the internet already.

    • Get real, dude, you are fooling yourself. For all of your attempts to maintain anonymity, your Internet provider(s) know everything you do and every site you visit. The only way to be anonymous is to stay the hell off of the Internet and move to Siberia.

  • Ad blocking is the new Napster.
    Harmful to the industry, but an easy solution for annoyed consumers who don’t understand the nuances of the biz.

  • Let’s keep in mind that the advertising industry is there to prime us to consume more stuff that typically is either bad for us or for the planet (or in many cases both). So the more ad-blocking, the merrier–and if that undermines consumer capitalism, well that’s a positive side-effect as well.

    • Turn off your computer, stop wasting electricity. Consuming free content is still consuming, as it costs money to produce it and keep it up for your reading pleasure. Yes, there will be positive side-effect, when you have to pay fee for every site you want to visit, for use of your email, social network, for posting comments on the internet. Why do you do all this? Just stop now. Save the planet.

      • LOL.
        Internet was not made to paid for. You absolute moron. It was a way of letting people communicate. “When you have to pay…” stfu there already. People won’t visit those sites. Which means it is automatically dead.

  • Ads are not only annoying, they’re downright dangerous to you PC. There are so many unscrupulous ads that run crapware or are so bloated with media they almost kill your browser. There’s no way I would tolerate browsing without a blocker.
    Secondly, this is just a BS number. It’s like the RIAA claiming that every single song shared is a loss in sale. The math was bogus then, it’s bogus now. I never, ever, ever, click on click-bait ads.
    Furthermore, someone leaching off me to sell my browsing behavior without my permission is morally bankrupt. The model needs to die.

  • Maybe cluttering our browsing experience with ads isn’t actually the way of the future. I like how there’s this notion that we are obliged to consume all content sent to us.

  • I use ad block and for the record, I dgaf how much money your losing. The guy who invented it lives on donations and thus is legally untouchable. I think he’s the kind of inventor and industry leader that we want changing the game like this. You want to not lose money? Don’t make my browsing an experience an intolerable hell of 30 second non skippable commercials for a 2 min youtube video! Don’t make me watch or read anything just to read n article! I don’t min advertising if its done right but when it actively inhibits my browsing experience I say fuck that. Who’s doing it right? Reddit. Do what reddit does and restrict ads to one or two non pop up, non videos per page. Or Nexus, which does the same but offers a 1 time $2.00 fee to permanently disable them. Adblock has changed the rules of the ad game and these big corporate spenders need to adapt or get out of the game.

    • Agreed but I’d say “adapt or you’re fucked”. What you need is to level with your audience and find out what types of messages they’re open to receiving. I like Google AdWords because you’re only shown ads that are relevant to your searches. That’s a form of advertising that I can get behind. I go to some sites that are like “Hey – we know you hate ads but if you turn off adblock on our domain we promise to only show you stuff that we approve and nothing that we don’t. Also here’s our privacy policy which should be favorable to your browsing habits.” Advertising serves a very necessary purpose in our world, it’s just gotten out of hand because nobody was holding anybody accountable…ABP changed all that.

  • The ad industry has shown a total lack of respect for the audience they want to monetize.
    1.)They’ve refused to participate in compromises like Do Not Track.
    2.)They’ve made their ads obnoxious with auto play audio and video and pop overs
    3.)Their security screening is lackadaisical at best, which is why reports of xyz site’s ads serving malware have become all too common. Yahoo being the most recent example.
    4.)Privacy invasion is the norm.
    5.)They dramatically increase page load times.
    Ad blocking taking off should be no surprise, you simply can’t treat your audience this poorly and not expect a response.

  • Two items in particular (the stats aside) stand out from the report; one suggesting a little light may finally be dawning, the other a fine example of the ‘yesterday’s thinking’ that still prevails:
    “A deeper problem is that ad blocking is endemic only
    because online advertising has become so invasive that hundreds of millions of
    people are willing to take ma&ers into their own hands. To sustainably solve ad
    blocking, we must treat these users with respect, not force feed them the popovers, interstitials and video ads that they are trying to get rid of.”
    – Sean Blanch!eld

    Couldn’t agree more. If you can get the whole industry to hum this tune, and take on the additional ‘red lines’ mentioned by other commenters here, you might have a way out of the gargantuan hole you’ve all been digging. Hats off to a bit of common sense.
    Then on the other hand…
    “Advertisers, who have a right to communicate with consumers;”
    – Campbell Foster

    No, sorry you just dont. Communication is usually considered to be a two way process; at the least it assumes that the receiving party has seen the message. You have the absolute right to put your ads out there, but you have no ‘right’ at all to insist that we view them, even if only to ignore them. That is what adblocking is about; choice, and that line quoted above in effect offers none, notwithstanding that it is followed by “Consumers, who have a right to choose what they read, listen to, learn and feel. Or perhaps the wording was just very poorly chosen.
    Users get to decide whether an ad is seen at all and an impression registered, and if you think that ‘right to choose’ is going back into Pandora’s box you’re living in Cloud Cuckoo land. Make your ads acceptably behaved and tracking free and we might make the choice that you want. Just don’t kid yourself that you get to dictate terms – just ask the music industry how that works out.

    • The more you block the more other users are hit with ads, ultimately leading to content blocked like on Forbes.com and ultimately leading to the demise of small publisher websites who can’t afford to lose as much revenue as the big publishers.

  • Maybe if the ads weren’t so bloated, annoying, difficult to distinguish from content all the time, and didn’t spread infections through ad servers that are poorly maintained they wouldn’t be blocked as much. The ad companies made their own bed by letting things get so bad in the name of profit and people found a way around them and will continue to do so especially when they are attack paths for infections.

    • Maybe if you paid for the content, you could be the arbiter on what to charge. Frankly, if you have an adblocker, you are a shoplifter.

      • is blocking an ad stealing something? I completely disagree with that opinion. Ads nowadays are like being given a dog to hold when you step on a scale, before being charged by pound on the scale. You may want the dog, you may not, but either choice will probably not be the primary cause for you to buy a dog later. The dog may be nice and soft, or it may bark and pee on you as soon as you’re holding it. However, the type or personality of the dog doesn’t matter when you’re still getting charged by weight, after being forced to hold extra. The owner of the scale is getting extra money to give you the dog to hold, both from the extra weight *and* from the dog owners who want you to see their dog.
        The dog is all/any ads, the scale is your bandwidth amount, and the extra price is time (you load pages slower and have youtube ads) and money (bandwidth caps are exceedingly common).
        Now add that 20% of the dogs you’re forced to hold will pee on you, 50% will bark, and only 10% will be nice and fluffly and do nothing (you hope). And you’re given an option to instead use a scale that never allows you to hold a dog while being weighed again. According to you, choosing to use this scale means you’ve stolen from the people leasing the dogs. This, to me, sounds absolutely absurd.

      • For which content publisher or ad-tech company do you work?
        Industry folk who don’t change that attitude will soon be looking for work in other industries. When the current revenue model results in an abysmal click through rate of 4-6 out of 10,000, there is A LOT of room for improvement.
        Most would agree that advertising is useful and desirable. In the very near future it will move to contextual and consensual. The Internet is all about positive user experience, not interruption and assault.

      • Not true at all–I already pay to access the internet, then I pay for the data I use. Bandwidth-heavy ads, like video that automatically loads and plays on parts of the webpage you can’t even see until you scroll down, are the equivalent of paying to drive on a highway for a period of time but being forced to take on hitchhikers that weigh-down the car and cause you to need more time on the road than you originally paid for.

        • Very true, forgot to include that in my useless rant above. I was so surprised and astounded the first time I came across the “ad-blocking is stealing us” slogan they’ve come up with. Since then I’ve come across it frequently.
          I’ve used computers since the early eighties, I have an instiable curiosity which I’ve happily indulged, science, art, surfing, ancient history…wonderful. But, LOL, if this goes on i’m thinking of just sharpening up the old library card and throwing the laptop and the dumb phone out the 2nd story window.
          Anyway thanks for your post, thats valuable infomation.

      • WHAT A BUNCH OF F*iNG BS YOU ARE. I’D LIKE TO KNOW JUST WHEN YOU STARTED TO GO ONLINE? Two years ago? That seems to be when the whiny crying really started from scam/shame businesses. It wasn’t some vauge ideology the founders (for lack of an inclusive word) initiated a service that was intended to be, “GASP” free! You need to read some history about the internet/WWW…as long as your controllers are moving the monkeys mind around you will be on the wrong side. Just as i see ads in the REI WHEN I GO THERE, i will look at their ads for items i like. You and other libertarian morons don’t seem to see that there is a certain amount on continuity between blocking your crap and the crap i get in the NYT. Before the paper even gets in the house the chaff, the equivalent ofyour shitty looking ads, goes right in recycling unless I DECIDE TO BRING SOMETHING IN, its not stealing and its NOT YOUR CHOICE WHAT I DO WITH CRAP THAT APPEARS ON MY COMPUTER! So F*ck you and your moronic libertaritard philosophy AND YOU ARE INSULTING TO THE PEOPLE THAT MIGHT BUY YOUR JUNK IF YOU PEOPLE HAD HALF A CREATIVE BRAIN AND UNDERSTOOD PEOPLES JUSTIFIABLE ANGER. YOU COULD COME UP WITH CREATIVE IDEAS FOR ADVERTISING, slight chance of that I know since that would cost more money and which would interfere with the next useless IPO from Silicon Deash Valley. Useful, non-intrusive, educational (remember thinking?), fill in the positive blanks not shit that can give you virus’ because idiots like you dont maintain your apps consistantly. YOU AND THE OTHER ADVERTISING WHINERS NEED TO STOP THIS COMPLETE ASININE CLAIM ABOUT AD BLOCKING BEING THEFT….you are just unbelivable.

        • No, YOU are the one who is unbelievable!
          Blocking an ad while viewing content is the same, EXACT thing as pumping gas and running off without paying! That’s called STEALING!
          Guess they didn’t teach ethics where you grew up.

          • Not unless you’ve found some ‘miracle’ gas where the same gallon can be used and sold again and again, in which case capitalism would probably be over. However the exact same content can be viewed over and over again; if you block ads you may be infringing the copyright owners right to charge to view the content, but that is a civil matter, not a criminal one.
            And when it comes to ethics, harvesting user behavioural and personal data without consent by far outstrips adblocking in the ‘unethical’ stakes, so I’d be a bit more circumspect in assuming you have the moral high ground. Publishers and ad tech firms don’t have the right to make a living, they only have the right to try. If they’re making a pigs breakfast of it, they have no one but themselves to blame.

          • So, a father with 2 kids and a wife who merely wishes to augment his income by creating an interesting website and receiving modest compensation via advertising revenue must also be denied? You prefer to take food from the mouth of a child?

          • Is that the best you can do? I don’t think “won’t you please think of the children” counts as a coherent argument against adblocking. Or anything else come to that.
            If your example father is facilitating abuse of my personal data without my informed consent, he’s playing fast and loose with his kids diet, not me.

          • Depriving someone of property is stealing. Failing to provide them revenue isn’t.
            I doubt anything beyond repetition was taught where you grew up.

          • His choice. My heart bleeds for him.
            They do indeed have schools, but they teach real world facts, not variations of “it’s not fair”.

    • Native Ads (the ones hard to distinguish) arose from costs inflicted by adblockers. That being said we could work harder for a uniform, more secure way to display ads. Simply blocking them isn’t the answer as it hurts small startup publishers the most.

  • This sounds to my like the world upside down. I’m responsible for these companies missing money for something I didn’t ask for? Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with ads, but when someone is canvassing rubbish at my door I also slam the door in his face. So why should I accept this behavior in my browser, which has become my virtual door in the online world. Perhaps if the ads are less dominating my screen or do not feel like a canvasser putting his feet between my door, I’m willing to accept them. So perhaps we should return this one to those who force me to use adblockers. Come with less annoying and less intrusive methods, and maybe I’m willing to play the game.

    • Because your browser is not your house. Consuming content on internet is not your birth right. It is more like visiting someone else’s house and eating their cake, but not wanting to hear their boring stories. What makes you entitled to all this free content? Who owes it to you? Every site belongs to someone, who works hard to keep it up. Hosting costs money, content producing costs money. Ads are the only way publisher can get paid. If you feel that site is using annoying intrusive ads, don’t come back. Go and get this content somewhere else. But if you want to keep consuming – don’t steal. You are not punishing the advertisers and corporations. They don’t lose money on this, they save money because not they don’t need to pay publishers. Content creators are the ones that suffer from your ignorance. The bottom line – there is no free cheese. Someone has to pay for your access to information. Until now advertisers did it. Now prepare for paywall and subscription fees, or less good content. Maybe when they make you pay for every single click on the internet, you will understand that advertising based ecosystem wasn’t so bad.

      • My browser is my house. I paid for it and I maintain it. Just like my house.
        Juno.com was attempt back in the day to provide free dial-up Internet service in exchange for seeing their ads. I just looked at their site; they’re selling dial-up for $14/month.
        So much for the down-your-throat ad model.

      • Your logic is fucked.
        What you are comparing is nothing what it is in the real internet world.
        Let me give you a better example with the cake shit your going on here.
        This is what is happening.
        You come over to neighbours and he offers you a cake. But before you get it he will have to tell you a short story. And your like fine, It should be worth it. (Just as clicking on the Video and the ads appears before you watch) As soon as it finishes it starts a new one (just like how ads works) and then the new person pops out starting to say his story and then there is another 10 people telling you their stories. And because these ads track your data. Guess what they start telling you your own stories. (Website ads)
        At this point you are like fuck the cake, I’m leaving.
        But of course ad block comes in, who allows you to just skip all the stories and take some of that cake.
        Just like “qka” said, my pc/browser is my home. I worked, bought a computer with the hard earned money. Why the fuck would I not want to enjoy some of the free content. As everything in this world is already pay to use/view/do.
        To the content creators, well fuck you and tough luck. Time to get a real job, most of the people get paid RIDICULOUS amount of money for playing games/vlogging and doing MAKE UP!??
        People who build house for people to live in do not get a quarter as much as games. Making videos before was not a way to make money, people used to do it as a hobby.
        To get into Youtube, Twitch and people are trying their luck. Just because I clicked on the video that was shared/recommended by someone doesn’t mean I don’t get to watch it because…. I Don’t support them by having and ad block on?
        Who the fuck supports people in the real world. “Oh look, you made a real good room here’s a £2,000 donation, oh wait there is another 1,000 people who are also going be subscribed to you on MONTHLY Basis.”
        The only money you get in the real world, is in fact your set pay rate. You will not get more nor less (if you do your hours). Yes it is hard when the company pays you per 1,000 views which 50% of the percentage has an adblock on.
        But YOU KNEW that before you boarded the boat.

        • Mantas by buying a PC has nothing to do with the internet. I get not wanting to be tracked but the fact is the ONLY reason you can access that “Free” content online is because of advertisements. If Ad Block becomes big enough one of two things will happen. The “Free” content will go away and you wont have anything you can watch or view online, or you’ll have to pay an access fee to the website that you view their content on. Ads are the price of admission to get the content you like. I disagree with the model a lot of advertisers use online but don’t be deluded into thinking people blocking ads will have no impact, it will, it will either make the free content cost something or make it go away.

        • You clearly don’t understand the meaning of the term “logic.”
          A LOGICAL way to look at this is that I put an ad in craigslist looking for steak which is analogous to doing a search on Google for steak. I get hundreds of responses one of which is from you. You have cake. I don’t want cake. You answer my craigslist ad trying to tell me how great your cake is and that I really want cake. When I ignore your offer of cake, or tell you I don’t want cake, so you break down my door and try to force the cake down my throat. And then you have the gall to criticize me for blocking your phone and email, and perhaps getting a restraining order.
          If I could limit search results to only sites that advertise within a set of reasonable guidelines, then I would be happy to NEVER see the other results, but I have no choice. In fact, the search engines push the ad heavy sites to the top of the damn list. If the industry does not start to police itself, then it will get what it has coming, and it is not good.

    • You ask for the ad when you visit a website for free, or we could go back to subscription paper news delivered to your door for only $20 a month

      • Great idea. Switch to a subscription model and stop whining. Then you are explicitly giving users a choice. Please let us know which sites you manage so we can all make a choice to block them explicitly.

      • “You ask for the ad when you visit a website for free”
        No you really don’t, certainly not on the first visit. Click a link in Google and you are unaware if the site you are visiting is carrying advertising, has a subscription, or neither and is just simply free – funnily enough, plenty are. By the time you are in a position to make an informed decision on whether the ads for content is a fair exchange, you’ve been served ads, had 3rd party cookies dropped and had whatever personal data they can rip off added to a dozen profiles for the advertisers use and resale.
        For what you suggest the to hold true, the site would have to put up an interstial page informing the visitor of their intent to serve ads and track and profile users, while refraining from doing so before consent is obtained.
        “Implicit contract” doesn’t begin to cut it without having full disclosure in advance.

      • You just made my case. Make your site subscription based and you won’t have to worry about ad blockers or check for ad blockers and don’t let them access your site…..stop whining.

  • We don’t actually need adverts thrown at us all day every day any more. We have the internet, if we want something we can search for it. We don’t need it shoving down our throats. I personally have never bought anything just because I saw it in an advert. I decide what I want to buy and whether or not I actually need to buy it.

  • inside program vuze i pop ups some spam or some thing like that. when you are on free version you get pop ed. just install peerblock v 693 or newer. it will get blocked by peerblock program. easy done IT.

  • stop fucking advertising and get a real job, i personally use no less than 7 seperate add-ons to remove tracking, ads, cookies, flash and java from the net. instead of the corporate world throwing away countless billions on stupid fucking pictures and clips that have almost nothing to do with the product, they could instead invest those countless billions into making a product good enough that it does not need advertisement beyond word of mouth, in fact the rise of adblockers online should demonstrate to any advertiser that no ad has ever succeeded, thart commercials on television, or pictures on billboards are ignored and despised, this should be the revelationt hat advertising has ALWAYS been a waste of the advertisers money and that NOONE HAS EVER FUCKING PAID ATTENTION TO ADS EVER.much like buying a pet rock, buy a picture of your product to paste on a wall is a stupid naive idea.

    • You are really sticking it to the man! Except you dont punish the corporations, you only save them money. But you do punish content creators who rely on corporations to waste this money, so they can continue create free content.

  • If someone kept jumping out at me in the street shoving pieces of A4, with advertising slogans written all over them, in front of my face as I browsed a shop window I’d punch their effing lights out.
    There’s no difference to me as I browse the web.
    If I want or need something I will do the research on that thing. I don’t need someone telling me how great their crap is when it’s something I’ll never buy.

    • And you’d be arrested for domestic disturbance or fighting in public. You’re also not in public when viewing a website but costing the person running it money on their property.

      • The web publisher has a right…..publish or not publish……the user has the right to block their ads or not as well. it is the publisher’s responsibility to ensure that their ads are not annoying or malicious if they don’t want their ads blocked. The fact that the publisher is pushing unwanted content into a user’s PRIVATE space is even more reason for the content provider to be cautious. If the content providers don’t get control of this, and start policing themselves, then they can expect the animosity they are creating to grow, and even the good content providers will go out of business. Assaulting the user with annoying and/or malicious ads, and worse, getting on a blog and insulting them further, is just bad business. User’s have a right to be pissed and a right to block. The abusers will get what they have coming to them in the end. I sincerely hope we don’t have to throw out the baby with the bath water, but the baby is looking more and more like a evil gremlin all the time.

        • No. You do not have a “RIGHT” to take someone’s property, period. Consumers do not (or should not IMO) pay for the internet based on their usage, but on the speed of which they can use the internet. Websites do pay based on their usage (and often the speed) at which they can transmit content to users. Therefore a user is not losing anything by viewing a site with an ad that loads slightly slower, but a website IS losing something by transmitting content and paying for it. If you block their ads you are then taking that content for free. It’s just the same if you were to walk up to someone selling Apples at a Farmers Market where they paid to be and you did not pay to be, then stole one of their Apples and ran off saying you had the right to not starve.
          If you don’t like ads, stop visiting websites that display them.

          • Again, your analogy is ridiculous. It says that if I don’t want to be assaulted, I really cannot use the internet because the abuses of most sites are not obvious until you are on them. A more appropriate analogy is that a customer is walking in a market. They stop to look at the vendors wares, and the vendor comes out and tries to force them to watch very annoying ads or even tries to place unwanted software on the sell phone or push advertising material into their pockets and down their wife’s blouse. As soon as I figure out that a site is abusive with their ad policies, I stop using it, but the only way to find that out without exposing yourself and your computer to the abuse is to use an ad blocker. Any site can sense the use of an ad blocker. If you don’t want people with ad blockers on your site, then you can block them from using it. If I find sites that are not abusive in their advertising, I unblock them, but the only way to find out without exposing yourself to the abuse is to use a blocker. As I said, police yourself, switch to a different revenue model or suffer the consequences dictated by a free market. The natural result of the abuse of the advertising model is Ad Blocking programs. Stop whining and abusing your customers.

          • No one is TAKING your property when they view a website that you make publicly available. That would be like saying I can’t look at a building because I don’t own it, and if it has an offensive ad on it, I can’t put my hand up and block the ad but still look at the building. Under your twisted “logic” the building owner would have the right to keep me from putting my hand up or worse have the government prevent people from having hands. Switch to a subscription model and stop whining.

  • It’s interesting that everyone here seems to think when they visit my website. The one I have put up and worked hard to create and make beautiful, it is theirs? I’m not coming to your door, your coming to my window. And if your browser is a door you went out through it. If you consume the content I created. You don’t think it’s fair to throw a penny my way?
    And of course I don’t use dodgy providers, Google and internal ads only.
    Your just all self-righteous and greedy!

      • From the company that owns YouTube — scene of the biggest copyright theft in history.
        The company that steals photographers’ images: presenting them almost fullsize on Google Images so people don’t have to visit the original site that did all the work.
        Scanning magazines and making them available worldwide forever when the photographers originally licensed their images for a low fee for “one use” in a specific country.
        The company that intimidates copyright holders who complain about a copyright theft. Handing their details to a site called “Chilling Effects” which then publishes them. While the thief remains anonymous. Some of these are one person businesses. Not corporations.
        Moral? Don’t make me laugh.

        • I’m not the one who’s making you laugh…you’re not getting my point.
          A small part of my point: I use YouTube a fair amount, and I haven’t seen a single ad there in 3 years.

    • yes, you have the right to be paid, but you do not have the right to scream in my face PAY ME at the top of your lungs 24/7

  • When I was in Sales, my manager always reminded us to listen to the customer.
    Ad-blockers are a clear signal that many sites are falling down in serving their customers’ needs & wants. We want news, info & entertainment, but not at the price of the time-, privacy-, bandwidth- and sanity-destroying ads & their trackers. Some of us pay cash—I pay a couple thousand a year for news, music & video services—for most purposes, almost everybody would be happy enough with a nice, clean site even if it also has ads.
    Google long ago established that it’s OK for a Big Company to scan thru sites, taking the particular information it wanted for its huge business model; ad-blockers are the same thing for the little guy, letting us request what we want for our purposes.
    But the very same “web developers” who told us we didn’t really want DNT, have created a Tragedy of the Commons, blasting the supposedly-sacred Open Web with such a steaming pile of ads & trackers that sites have gone unusable for most mobile users, and many desktop users as well. The fact that, in 2015, users regularly see un-moveable ads blocking content, auto-play videos that disrupt our workplaces and other such sins is testament to how greedy the Ad Network people have become in their feeding frenzy.
    DNT wasn’t the best way for users to show they didn’t like being tracked when they wanted to read a story. Ad-blockers aren’t the best way to tell a site that they’ve gone beyond the pale and destroyed their value. But as long as the industry doesn’t show any signs of giving customers what they want on mutually-acceptable terms, they’ll have to do.

    • I won’t say that there aren’t bad ads out there and even harmful ones. I won’t say that we as advertisers and marketers can’t do better, we can and we should. But that doesn’t explain the meteoric growth. A lot of it is based on FUD, complete misunderstanding, and a sense of entitlement among youth born into the internet savvy world. Frankly I love what Imgur is doing and to a lesser extent Reddit but that’s a difficult proposition to demand from all small publishers who deserve to make money from their own unique content.

  • By the twisted logic I see here, you shouldn’t pay taxes because you don’t want to pay taxes. You shouldn’t have to pay for groceries, insurance, etc., because you don’t want to pay for them.
    There are sites that show respect for their visitors with how they display ads and there are sites that are crammed with them. If you don’t like a site crammed with ads, don’t go to it.
    All you’re really doing is rationalizing a free ride. It’s no different than rewiring a cable box to get free cable.
    If you refuse all ads on all sites, those of us who work our butts off and try to make a living with ads to produce the sites that you consume have a right to block you. And pretty soon, we’ll have the technology in place to do so.

  • blocking ads is harmful to whole world because when people start blocking ads, bloggers get no income since most of bloggers depend on the adsense money, then they stop writing, then people can’t find valuable knowledge in internet. ad money encourages many people to make their own blog and writes something in their field. so please don’t block ads that ain’t annoying, like google adsense.

    • and the world was that much worse off before the Internet? If the Internet went away tomorrow, the world would not stop spinning. All that would happen is a bunch of people would no longer make a million bucks a year uploading cat videos.

      • I am not talking about cat videos. I am saying those who truly work hard to earn money. I admit cat videos are a bit stupid with million of views but people watch that’s how they become popular. when there is a demand for something, there will always be a supply line for it.

  • I never, ever, EVER intentionally click on an advert. By blocking the adverts I’m honestly reflecting the ineffectiveness of the ad. The manufacturer of the product is no longer paying the ad agency for an “impression” that doesn’t work – and my ISP is spending less on bandwidth to deliver content that isn’t useful or needed in any way.
    I find products by looking on review sites, and by using search. If your product is truly better, I’ll buy it. If you merely shout loudly that it’s better, you’ll annoy me, and I may not buy it even if it is better.
    What the world truly needs is zero advertising – but instead some really, really good review sites…people like “Which” magazine – who do serious, independent tests of products and let you know the pro’s and con’s. The world needs to switch to a model where we can trust reviews.

  • Pure propaganda, I’d love to see where they’re getting this 41% from when ad-block addons like ad-block pro have been losing users due to allowing ads through their filers. Same goes with Ad-block sometimes.

  • I prefer choice.
    In my case I don’t want ads. I’m happy to pay a
    small amount for worthwhile content though. (There must be fairness too with
    click-bait rubbish, etc.)
    So you have come down on the dark side for
    me. In the name of fairness I suggest you publish all domains / end
    points that you serve from and that serve your spyware. Those who care,
    can then simply block all of you. Let’s see whether you are really for
    fairness or just after your own profit? You can put the list here and
    on your web site, from a top level menu item.

  • 5 years ago, publishers thought there are enough readers willing to pay for ad-free content and implemented a slew of micropayments on their websites (More in http://ow.ly/UjVY0) Unfortunately, when they were actually faced with a choice to view ads or pay money, most readers chose the former and many micropayment initiatives died. Today, there are a lot of people who claim that they’re willing to pay for viewing content sans ads. According to this FT.com article titled “Axel Springer winning fight against adblockers” (http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/0e58d68a-8305-11e5-9dc0-186bb1146746.html#axzz3qdGhUTSc) published two days ago, such people still seem to be in the minority. When it comes to ad-free content, looks like people still don’t put their money where their mouth is. The situation is not very different with people’s claims that they never click ads: According to CMO.com, U.S. Internet ad revenues rose 19% in the first six months of 2015: http://cmo.cm/1KtVxcs. Somehow people will claim they never click ads but online ad revenues only keep increasing.

  • The fact is ad blocking makes the world a FAR better place. Yeah some sites may shutdown but that’s fine, even if its Google and Youtube. Ads have no place on the internet period except for the owner’s site meaning if its a Kraft Mac and Cheese ad it should only be seen at http://www.kraft.com, and no other place should this ad EVER pop-up, imbedded, ect. I’m a PROUD adblock user and I definitely tell all my friends about uBlock and Adtrap. Also when I see an ad all it does is stop me from using the service or refrain from buying the product. I don’t have cable tv due to ads and use the following commercial free versions of the following to watch tv Netflix, Hulu Plus (ad free version) HBO Now, and Showtime Anytime. Now for radio I only listen to Siriusxm. I suggest others to do the same. Now I need to turn my adbloacker back on, Later

  • Thats good, advertisers will give their money directly to websites, google stole enough money from publishers.
    There is two reasons that users install adblockers :
    1/ Youtube inside videos ads.
    2/ Uploading and piracy sites, including video hosting sites.
    While we can blame youtube for that, we can’t actually say much about the sites that are already doing illegal activities by free hosting and sharing copyrights content.
    And the problem is when you activate adblock by default it will block ads on all sites, i only deactivate it on sites as a way of “thanks” for good content.
    We are living in the “thanks economy” now.

  • I dont blames ads companies more like i blame content creators, they are the once who allow such annoying ads like the once served by Pop-under and info graph, why cant they just learn that forcing people to go through ads does not help at all, what content could you be prividing that i really need to be annoyed by you in order to get it, sell it instead if its so precious. Look at Facebook for instance, you get one ad per page and is clearly indicate it is a sponsored post, you can scroll past it if not interested or look at if not interested, no harm done

  • I don’t believe this is right. Clicking on Denmark shows 1.264.292 Monthly Active Adblocking Users. I take it they are not unique, why it perhaps is sessions instead? Otherwise it would mean more or less 50% of all internet users have an Adblocker installed, and I can definitely say that is not the case.

  • Here is a boon for everyone, Who are suffering with Ad Blocking Plug-in, Poptm.com has arrived
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  • I started using adblocker once I realized over half my data usage in a day was from ads, particularly video ads running in the background. I’ll stop using Adblock once I no longer have to pay to watch an ad for a product I don’t want.

  • Without adblocker I won’t go on the internet. Firefox with uBlock and I don’t care about cookies makes the internet more user friendly for me.

  • This site talking about adblocking is itself serving so many ads and tracking.
    I’m using uBlock Origin on Firefox. It is showing 140 elements blocked which includes ads and the tracking.
    This is the only reason why we opt for ad blockers.
    There’s do much tracking and ads per page.
    Numbers of ads and tracking 5-10 would be OK but 140 forces us to use ad blockers.
    Anyhow, you said PageFair’s ad are secure and are not blocked by ad blockers.
    But my ad blocker (uBlock Origin) was able to block them.

  • I find the ‘you use adblock you steal’ rhetoric quite strange. Was it always that if you stand up to go to the bathroom during a tv ad you are stealing?
    I can 100% choose not to watch commercials, ads or anything. Ads are a risk taken by a company and I have no responsibilities to watch any of them.
    Do you have to read all ads in the street while you go to the store?

  • Thank you for illustrating perfectly precisely why most of those posting comments here despise and choose to block advertising and marketing. Your post may be pure spam and the gutter end of the business, but as far as I’m concerned the IAB membership are not so far behind in the ‘purveyors of snake oil’ stakes.

  • I don’t mind advertising, but the army of flash/video advertisements that clog my connection is completely unacceptable. While advertising is OK, there should be a limitation on how much advertising should be applied to content. As it stands, if I load a simple blog post or article (text content which is often available on hundreds of sites…) a giant ad pops up disabling (or just obstructing) content for 5-30 seconds. Annoying, but forgivable on its own. Then afterward, whilst READING text content, a video advertisement pops up and auto-plays with audio, consuming high amounts of bandwidth and just generally being obnoxious. In addition, we have banner ads playing flash content above and below, side bar image ads, and tooltip adwords that spring from the text with images if you hover near them. While the article itself provides some minor value in information, this single page consumes more bandwidth than streaming the first 10 minutes of a 720p movie on netflix. People complain about youtube video ads that play at the beginning or at the 15-30min mark in videos, these are nothing compared to attempting to read a simple article on most sites. So having said that, it should not be a surprise that the use of adblockers has skyrocketed. These content providers should stop reporting loses when in reality its just potential revenue they feel they are entitled to as opposed to what they’ve actually earned. A tangible value needs to be defined, how much obnoxious advertising should one endure to experience your content? How much advertising can be applied before one’s audience gets fed up and adopts an adblocker? We are starting to find out.

  • How about providing statistics on how much bandwidth is wasted on unwanted advertising? (by “unwanted”, I mean “all”)

  • On Which bases you are finding numbers of adsblock user like base on “IP address” or “Mac Address” ??

  • Invaluable writing – I loved the information , Does someone know where my business could obtain a template a form version to type on ?

  • The fundamental problems are
    * my attention is worth money
    * selling my attention to an advertiser is not the same as selling a the value of the content published
    * the margin between the value of my time+my purchase power > the value of your content
    * what entitles any publisher the right to get the value of the readers/viewers purchase power in exchange for their content?
    * if a publisher is using an individuals data to sell their ads why are they not paying the individual for the value of my data that enables them to sell ads?
    Net – advertising is broken and massively inefficient. People block ads because they are intrusive, irrelevant, annoying, and ruin the online experience and the barter for content is not equitable.
    Advertising as we know it is a holdover from analog networks where we did not have the technology to empower more equitable and fair means of compensation. Advertising as it was implemented in past is in a death spiral. Any publisher or service provider holding onto the notion that traditional brokerage models will survive is mistaken. Check out PowerMyData .

  • As a publisher who has put a lot of time and effort into researching and putting up decent content, with adsense limiting me to 3 ads per page, it’s depressing seeing this argument. Though I get 200,000 people a month making use of my travel guides I now earning hardly anything off them, so I don’t bother updating so you adblockers can now get by on out of date and misleading content. Nothing is free in this life, if someone publishes a magazine it has ads, ditto TV, otherwise you can all go to the library and borrow books.

  • Thank you for sharing this information, and thank you for promoting responsible descision making. You words of warning do indeed give me pause in desciding to block ads, and makes me want for a way to block ads on a case by case basis; e.g. block only the offending ads.

  • i’v been using ad-block on my own pc for almost 2 years now and when my pc broke i borrowed my friend’s pc (no ad-block extension used) then i realized how much pain in the ass to browse any website without it.. pop ups all the time and some sudden downloads without permission other than the ads that block the whole page and refuse to close unless you remove it from “inspect” menu every single time..

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