by, 18th August 2012 at 11:00 AM (2080 Views)
As a browser nomad, I find it hard to keep up-to-date with extensions and remembering to install even the basics when I jump from one browser to another. In the case of my work computer I have no say in the matter, but at home I have used no less then four different browsers since installing my OS. One extension I have routinely forgotten about is AdBlock, as you can probably tell from previous hilarious failures in targeted advertising.
Unfortunately the landscape of advertising has changed and I find myself finally forced to run an ad blocker on Google Chrome. Over time I have noticed a significant increase in the use of advertising by legitimate companies, which is fair enough, but also a significant increase in how invasive adverts have become. Let's take YouTube for example, their monetisation scheme means everyone is placing adverts on their channel thinking they will make an extra income on the side. For a few people, this is true and how they make a fair living. For others, they will never see any returns because their videos aren't popular enough. If anything, they are damaging their channel by adding a 30 second pre-video advert for 5 seconds of their cat doing something stupid.
Unfortunately such examples are why I have been forced to install an AdBlocker, depriving those making a genuine living from advertising of their entitled money just so I can browse the Internet without companies intercepting my requests and placing irritating videos in the way. You could argue it's theft of money but I could argue it's theft of my time and privacy. Had all adverts been merely 5 seconds or so long I wouldn't mind and left my browser open to their advertising. When full-page banners appear or minute-long unskippable videos get in the way the adverts frankly become intolerable and everyone suffers. I have lost count how many times I have given up on a site because it insists on thrusting the same advert in my face even if I back out and go to another page/video. The record I have seen for pre-video ads is also one hour long(!)
So I guess I now join the ranks of those warring against intrusive advertising companies blockading our browsers and trying to serve us what they think we want. The reality is those who install AdBlockers clearly don't want anything from them at all.
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