back to article Ad biz now has one less excuse to sponsor freetards and filth

Project Sunblock is a technology that might help make the internet less of a cesspit. It tells advertisers where their ads are appearing on the web, which would be unremarkable in any other medium: shouldn’t the ad spenders know exactly where their ads are appearing? But it’s not that simple. Web advertising can entail a …

  1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Daily Fail?

    freetards and filth

    I came here hoping for an article about subhuman Palestinians and subhuman Russian-speaking people living in Ukraine getting their just desert, instead of which I served another article about "piracy". Arrrrr!

    “drain the swamp of dodgy networks, dodgy agencies and dodgy sites"

    At least the rhetoric is up to it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Daily Fail?

      As DaM has demonstrated, one problem with people who hold extreme prejudice is that they can't help but colour their expectations to fit in with their perverted perception of the world around them.

      How about keeping an open mind until you've read the article?

  2. heyrick Silver badge

    and returns 96 data points every time an ad is served,

    Yet more scripting to block? Yet another entity tracing our activities across the web?

    1. Matt 21

      Re: and returns 96 data points every time an ad is served,

      My only hope is that this leads to a better understanding of advertising and thus businesses will realise that every €1000 they spend on advertising only gets them €10 in return.

  3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

    How will this play with browsers that are configured with adblockers? Will it let the advertisers see who is blocking their ads, and perhaps allow them to circumvent the block, or suppress the display of wanted informatiion unless the user accepts the ads? Or allow them to "punish" websites who have a high percentage of adblocker users?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Will it let the advertisers see who is blocking their ads, and perhaps allow them to circumvent the block"

      It's already pretty easy to detect ad blockers (jQuery has it as a built in function). I use it on any site I create that uses ad revenue to run it, have an add blocker enabled, you get told to turn it off or signup for a premium account.

      1. Tromos

        Sounds like I now need an ad blocker detector blocker...

      2. Mike Flugennock

        "...turn it off or signup for a premium account..."

        Yeah, I see that a lot. P'wah ha hah.

        I'm too busy laughing at that admonishment to be as annoyed as I should be. It reminds me of the old days of the Web ad business, and being repeatedly, blatantly begged by sites to "please click on an ad...". (smirk, giggle)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "...turn it off or signup for a premium account..."

          > "...turn it off or signup for a premium account..."

          Or click "back" and find another website to use, there's always at least one.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Premium Account or nowt?

        Well Mr AC web developer, if I ever come upon this choice I will make sure that I go elsewhere. If I can't find it then I'll do without.

        I don't like adverts. I don't like adverts blocking what I'm trying to read on the page I navigate to.

        I don't like adverts that send all sorts of tracking date to god knows how many big brother systems out there.

        As a result I will continue to use Adblockers. Your sites will get no revenue from me.

        Yes I am an Old Git (and very tasty it is too).

      4. Kiwi

        have an add blocker enabled, you get told to turn it off or signup for a premium account.

        Or go elsewhere.

        I discovered AB due to my frustration of trying to read a largely technical article, and having animated ads moving all over the screen. I used to manually block them until infrustration I searched for "better ways to block ads" .

        Have the video ads play through ONCE then come to a static image, or have a static image. Anything else and I block it.

        If your site annoys me, I won't visit your site. I'd quite happily look at and even sometimes follow ads on sites (if the ad is for something I have an interest in), and really don't want to block them, but as so many ads are just plain annoying and have no way to turn them off (whatever happend to the "play once" function in Flash? - or right-click and turn off "loop" or "play"?), I won't allow them. (You can still advertise y'know - plain text in the article, with a picture and link.. Even something PHP generated to give you dynamic content while appearing static to the blocker... Not that hard!)

    2. Charles 9

      I think they're already doing that with ad-blocker-blockers and hosting the desired content on the same server and system as the ads, thus making it an all-or-nothing proposition.

  4. Crisp

    I see the CLOP are throwing their weight around again.

    Where exactly is their jurisdiction?

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: I see the CLOP are throwing their weight around again.

      Very limited - but it doesn't actually matter. In this case, they don't need jurisdiction because they are only acting as a helpful party in negotiations for voluntary action. On those occasions they do perform police actions outside of the city, they do so in cooperation with local forces - usually anti-counterfeiting operations.

  5. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    Reducing the cesspit and filth?

    Get rid of the whole advert-funded mess; that'll get rid of all the pointless clickbait and aggregator sites with zero information. Might even take down some of the sex sites too, but somehow I doubt it.

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: Reducing the cesspit and filth?

      At least with pirate sites, you usually find what you want at the end. The worst of them are those 'driver download' sites that just seem to be an endless loop of bad 'search' engines and links to links to links to links, always promising that the obscure driver you want is right around the corner only to instead send you towards an affiliate site with an assurance that it can be found there.

      1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

        Re: Reducing the cesspit and filth?

        And those bloody datasheet sites...

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I like filth

    I like filth, the internet would be a very dull place without it.

    1. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: I DON'T like filth

      Dull is good. Dull is how it was before Web 2.0, and it was perfectly fine that way.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I DON'T like filth

        Before web 2.0 it was certainly full of filth; the only change is that the filth is better quality and easier to find.

      2. Mike Flugennock

        Re: I DON'T like filth

        Actually, the Web was much more interesting before Web 2.0 buried us in an avalanche of bland, cookie-cutter site designs and even more bland, empty, buzzword-choked articles.

        I mean, c'mon... could Web 2.0 have ever possibly given us the 24-Hour Church Of Elvis?

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I DON'T like filth

        there was filth long before that "web 2.0" marketing thing. Even though it was grainy and took ages to get our claws on.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I DON'T like filth

        "Dull is good. Dull is how it was before Web 2.0, and it was perfectly fine that way."

        Perfectly fine for those who were very easily pleased. The sort of people who thought Compuserve via dial up was exciting.

        1. F0rdPrefect

          Re: I DON'T like filth

          Compuserve via dial up WAS exciting compared to what came before.

  7. Purple-Stater

    (Potentially) Interesting Morals

    If I'm understanding this correctly... Big Cookie Company (BCC) decides to pay Super-Marketing Firm (SMF) a bajillion bucks to advertise all over the big ol' internets. Then the bobbies decide to crack down a bit on the funding of a few scurvy websites by intercepting and blocking/replacing those ads with legal warnings? So the BCC's paid-for advertising is now rather hijacked with zero recompense and they're supposed to be okay with it, because they're helping do the right thing?

    Are these coppers somehow authorized to mess with international trade? After all and for example: Spanish BCC pays French SMF to advertise on Lithuanian website, then English coppers change it all up. Doesn't seem like this should be legal, and certainly not ethical, to me. Is it illegal in England to advertise on such sites (I honestly don't know)? It seems that that should be at least a minimum requirement for this little project.

    Also, politician's aren't afraid to slap infringers. They are, however, hesitant to slap voting parents or neighbors of infringers when the only "proof" is an extremely unreliable IP address.

    1. the spectacularly refined chap

      Re: (Potentially) Interesting Morals

      Try reading the article and engaging your brain cell. They're working with the advertisers and brokers, not short-changing them. If the ads in question were simply being substituted the whole exercise would be pointless since the illegal sites would still get their advertising money. This is cutting off their revenue stream and replacing the ad with one they won't get paid for. The advertisers need to be fully on board to pull their ad from "disreputable" sites - hence the point at the end about what the gambling sites are willing to advertise on.

      1. Purple-Stater

        Re: (Potentially) Interesting Morals

        @Mr. Not-So-Refined

        Yes, the article does state that Sunblock is (normally) used just to gather data and works with advertisers and brokers. The article then goes on to say that the London police are using Sunblock to "zap & replace" ads. It does not say that the police are working with advertisers and brokers.

        You are correct in that illegal sites would still get their revenue stream if the ads are simply being substituted. However (to the best of my limited knowledge), I believe that most web advertising has switched away from the old "blanket ads" that were simply displayed, and now mostly pays for click-through advertising. In the case of click-through ads being replaced, then this actually would, in the exact purpose of the program, eliminate the websites revenue source. (This is probably what you were trying to say.)

        In any case, going somewhat back to my original question, how do the London police claim the legal authority to remove non-London-based advertising from non-London-based websites? Will this only affect people in London, or throughout the UK? I am not ranting here, I am not even from the UK, but I am genuinely curious as to the legal justification.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: (Potentially) Interesting Morals

      It loks very much like the rozzers are up to another one of those things the politicians love to call 'eye-catching', which seems roughly to translate as 'ultimately pointless and vapid but highly visible'.

      The police seem to get up to an awful lot of this, one of the more common examples being to 'investigate' particularly vigorously things that skate pretty close to being non-crimes, but which a) happen to look a lot worse than they actually are to the casual observer, and b) are getting a good deal of media coverage. I'm guessing the plan is a very Blairite 'double-win', wherein the public are reassured (yeah sure) that the worst thing that happens in the UK is a celebrity chipping their nail varnish after a shouty and ever so slightly tipsy dinner with the boyfriend in the cliquey restaurant du jour, and that gosh, aren't the police doing a wonderful job investigating literally every crime so studiously that one even gets on telly. A cunning strategy, save for the fact that anyone who lives in a london postcode starting with a "E" knows 'crime-lite britain' is utter bollocks, and no one else will have missed the fact that the image is a wee bit at odds with the number of times they're caught either fitting people up or covering up celebrity kiddy fiddling.

      Targets and media strategies the police do have in spades, morals and actual functionality they seem very short of these days.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: (Potentially) Interesting Morals

      Don't worry about big business, this is the City of London police, they know exactly who pays for their staff christmas parties and they'll make sure no money is harmed.

      BCC doesn't want their ads to be showing up on pirate or pr0n sites because it would make for bad PR, so they'll be right on board, it'll be the ad broker who'll be left out of pocket if anyone.

  8. Mike Flugennock

    "Last year, US Congressmen finally stirred into action..."

    Oh, that's just fucking great.

    Now, for even more fail.

  9. Snowy Silver badge

    I could accept adds if...

    They did not try and run scripts in them and they could guarantee them not to contain things that could compromise my system. Until then adblock stays.

  10. damian fell

    So how many people actually look at the adverts? These days I'm pretty sure that my brain is programmed to tune them out, the only time I ever seem to notice them is when I try to scroll a website on my touchscreen and there's an ad in the side bar (ebay is particulalry bad at this).

    1. Denarius

      @Damian not quite

      for those on sloooow and expensive comms links, those irritating animated anythings and attempts at popups et al take up bandwidth for parts of the page I might want. Don't mind ads if they are static and small as the sites have to generate revenue somehow, but 10 links to add sites, add snoopers and multiple little gifs make web surfing frustrating. Ad blockers are on full for that reason. The advertising firms might help themselves by using small well designed static adds more.

  11. Kiwi

    Fake Police...

    Probably already been said but...

    The page pictured reminds me very much of one of the variants of the "Fake Police" virus.. Actually several variants of it..

    oh.. City of London Police..

    Appropriate imagery then...

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