back to article Adpocalypse 'will wipe out display ad growth' by 2020

Ad-blocking threatens to snuff out growth in the digital display advertising market, reckons Optimal, a startup with an interest in talking up the Adpocalypse. According to Optimal’s trackers, 11.7 per cent of online display ads were blocked last year, which when married to a prediction on adblock growth, will see $12bn worth …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OR, the service which rely on intrusive ads could go away, and the web could go back to being lean and less commercialised. Like in the 90s when everything was more awesome, and the music/movie industry hadn't woken up to wrecking the internet.

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      And who pays the wages of people websites? Where does the revenue come from? For sure, the joy in the nineties was reading websites created by, and for, enthusiasts as their hobby - but at the time it was a supplement to magazines and newspapers. In reality, I spent a lot of pocket money on dead tree magazines, like PC Zone and later (thankfully I expanded my hobbies beyond gaming) Mountain Biking UK, the latter worth it for the beautifully painted full-colour artwork*.

      Yeah, everything was more awesome in the 90s, but paying £14 for a CD album wasn't so much.

      The buzzword back in the '90s was 'micro-payments' - it didn't take off at the time, but the idea was to make it easy to pay website you like a few pence per visit. Now one can imagine paying a modest subscription to read content from a group of websites. Some tradition journals now have apps or subscriptions available through tablets (primarily iPads). The tradition of having full access to a website if you have a subscription to a dead-tree magazine is long established (New Scientist, Which?)

      It might not have escaped your attention that the focus of stories on The Register is changing slightly, with more stories about storage, since these are of interest to the people who might just buy the goods and services advertised.

      *Nice picture: http://www.thisiswhy.ip3.co.uk/thisiswhy/index.html I do note that the hand-written text is often too small to read on a 1920 x 1200 display, but it looked lovely on the glossy page of a magazine. It would look good on a high-res tablet, though.

    2. defiler Silver badge

      alt.fan.optimal.die.die.die

      Am I close?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Until the ad industry starts attempting to get their house in order people are going to flock to AdBlocking software.

      Currently they're just attempting to pass the buck and blame everyone but themselves.

  2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

    The issue is mostly with trust

    As any of the el-reg readers who have tried an "ad-free" (quotes intended and quotes needed) experience can testify, it is not ad-free.

    It is simply what in the Soviet Union used to be referred as "Queue for the ones do not Queue" or as George Orwell once wrote in the Animal Farm: "Some animals are more equal than the others". This means being served ads by the ones who have paid more.

    So until the publishing industry develops some resemblance of honesty and treating the customer differently from the way it is treated by marketeers and admen, any attempts to monetize the "ad-free" experience are likely to be a very challenging proposition.

  3. noideas
    Facepalm

    Is it just me ....

    ... or has the World gone mad? Why would I want to pay to not see something that I don't want to see in the first place? There is little point in flinging ads at me because I don't take any notice of them - whether they are on a hoarding, in a newspaper, on the television or on the Interweb. Adblockers to me are the equivalent of being signed up to the telephone preference service (a fat lot of good that does though). If I am forced to dodge web adverts I will probably stop viewing content that carries too much of this dross.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why would I want to pay to not see something that I don't want to see in the first place?.

      Sky viewers might say the same ...

    2. kryptonaut

      Re: Is it just me ....

      That's the wrong way to look at things. Instead of asking "why should I pay to view this interesting site without ads?", try asking "why should this interesting site be offered to me for free?"

      There might be little point to you individually in having ads served, but you are not the only person in the system - to the content provider it makes the difference between being paid for their work or going out of business. I don't know if this suggestion is viable, but it's looking at an alternative way to fund the websites which, presumably, you want to see.

      Adblockers are not the equivalent of TPS - nuisance phone calls do not offer anything of value to the consumer whereas the websites that contain ads have content which is of interest, and which is supported by the serving of ads. Block the ads, the content will dwindle unless an alternative way is found to finance content developers.

      1. Palpy
        Facepalm

        Re: "Content will dwindle." Oh, if only --

        -- we had an economic system in which smart, motivated people could figure out solutions and be rewarded by making money. For an off-the-cuff example demonstrating this impossibility:

        X: Website owner: "Ads no longer make money for my guitar-making blog. I wish I could cut a deal with a vendor like Stewart-MacDonald, and host a mini-storefront on my site to sell some of the tools I write about."

        Y: Guitar tool vendor: "I sure wish our company could connect up with some of those great blogs, maybe with a mini-storefront app or something. Does such a thing exist?"

        Z: Web dev startup: "I wonder if there's any demand for a mini-storefront API, which would allow site owners to connect to a vendor's online store and sell stuff?"

        X + Y + Z = $profit!

        But I guess we can't expect the free market to find solutions to the adpocalypse. The internet is doomed, innovation is dead, people are stupid, nothing will change, the only thing to look forward to is the heat-death of the universe.

      2. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: Is it just me ....

        That's all valid. If the ad tossers clean up their act by killing Flash, auto-start videos, loud music, dancing bears or whatever, not cover the entire page on the screen, no tracking, then maybe, ad-blockers won't be needed. And then there's a malvertising.... You want to display your ads on my computer... clean up your act, advertisers.

        Content providers wondering why we ad block should just look at what I said above. If they push the advertisers to clean up their act, they will benefit also.

        I do unblock sites that have "respectable ads", might even click on one or two occasionally just to add some change to the content provider's pot. But too many times, I unblock and then immediately block due to the advertising content.

        1. Dr Scrum Master

          Re: Is it just me ....

          That's all valid. If the ad tossers clean up their act by killing Flash, auto-start videos, loud music, dancing bears or whatever, not cover the entire page on the screen, no tracking, then maybe, ad-blockers won't be needed. And then there's a malvertising.... You want to display your ads on my computer... clean up your act, advertisers.

          Content providers wondering why we ad block should just look at what I said above. If they push the advertisers to clean up their act, they will benefit also.

          I do unblock sites that have "respectable ads", might even click on one or two occasionally just to add some change to the content provider's pot. But too many times, I unblock and then immediately block due to the advertising content.

          Well written Mr 85.

          Someone should print this out and shove it in the faces of the advertisers until they get the message.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Is it just me ....

          Mark 85 said: I do unblock sites that have "respectable ads", might even click on one or two occasionally just to add some change to the content provider's pot.

          Well well well... I was about to say something about "pennies" but I checked my facts. Seems your clicks are worth about a dollar, or a pound, even. Or they were last year. The calculus isn't working for advertisers now that they have to spend $50 to make a sale, thanks to people like you :)

          Myself, I never click ads, but I will occasionally spend/donate $10+ for something I really like.

      3. Ben Boyle

        Re: Is it just me ....

        @Kryptonaut

        You'd have a fair point if the ads weren't obnoxious, invasive, or occasionally carrying a malware payload. Until the online ad industry can clean up its act, then blocking is the only way to stay safe.

        Site owners should be applying pressure to the ad industry, not to their customers, if they want to keep the revenue stream.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Is it just me ....

      "Why would I want to pay to not see something that I don't want to see in the first place?"

      Its a protection racket.

  4. Neil Alexander

    split the revenue 70:30 with publishers

    Very ominous sounding, given that this would either require them to be tracking your site visits for fair metrics, at which point you are the product yet again, or distributing wealth in some greedy, predetermined and unfair fashion that doesn't represent user browsing habits.

    I think I'll stick with current and free content filtering methods. Strangely it seems more ethical by comparison.

    1. VinceH

      Quite. From the same paragraph with the 70:30 split mentioned:

      Rob Leathern calls its a “shared subscription” service offering “ethical ad blocking”. Leathern is optimistic that users might be guilt-tripped into paying.

      It sounds to me that Javascript is going to be needed so that the site covered is able to determine whether or not to feed you ads.

      My use of NoScript isn't primarily to block adverts. It's really about better security and privacy, and has an added benefit of making most websites quicker (though advertising has a bearing on all three - security, privacy and speed). As such, enabling scripts so that yet another third party site can be contacted to fetch a sodding script to run on my computer is not an option.

      Just keep them unscripted and static to get them on my screen, rather than trying to find alternatives.

      1. Vic

        It sounds to me that Javascript is going to be needed so that the site covered is able to determine whether or not to feed you ads.

        Not *necessarily*.

        You could use an IP-based system - which would mean you get ads while away from home.

        Or you could use a cookie-based system - whic means you get ads if you ever clear your cookies.

        Frankly - whatever system is put in place, it's going to upset someone.

        So what's really going to happen is people are going to carry on using ad-blockers in the way they are currenly using them.

        Vic.

  5. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    If I were to encounter a subscription site worth subscribing to, or if I were running a subscription site, I'd expect the deal to be direct between subscriber and site. Why should a 3rd party horn in and get money for nothing?

    Ad blocking by ordinary users might be costing the ad industry some money. But we may reasonably expect to find that some of those using ad blockers are also the advertising industry's clients - after all why should they find having ads pushed in their faces any less unpleasant than the rest of ut. And when they realise that the rest of us have the same dislike of them as they do of the rest of adverts they'll start to wonder why they're paying good money to be disliked. That's when the industry's problems really start.

    1. kryptonaut

      The cost of adblocking

      It's not so much the advertising industry that bears the cost of adblockers - they simply pay to have their ads displayed a number of times, and if people run adblockers it just looks to the advertisers as though the internet has gone a little bit quieter. The ads will still be displayed sooner or later, and if not then they won't pay for it.

      The people who actually lose out are the content providers who would have been paid by the advertisers. They have invested time and effort into making the content, hosting it, and providing server bandwidth. Their hope/expectation is that those costs will be recouped by serving a few ads. If their outgoings remain but that income stream dries up and nothing replaces it, then the content will go too. Presumably we don't really want that to happen?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @kryptonaut - Re: The cost of adblocking

        Au contraire, let it happen! Anything that significantly hurts the ad industry is good for me :)

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: The cost of adblocking @Kryptonaut

        The people who actually lose out are the content providers who would have been paid by the advertisers.

        Yes there will be losers, but there will also be winners. Basically, for the vast majority of websites, a business plan based on ad-supported revenues is not a long-term business plan.

        If you don't believe me, I suggest you seek out tables of ad revenue, from memory there are only a handful of sites that earn $Bn's from ad's and you don't have to go far into the 100+ ranked websites to hit sites earning less than $1M... As you can perhaps gather the ad industry has little interest in such tables being widely published, hence why you have to seek the information out and deduce it from ad analytics websites.

      3. nijam

        Re: The cost of adblocking

        > Their hope/expectation is that those costs will be recouped by serving a few ads.

        And there, in a nutshell, is the flaw. It's a foolish hope, and it's a pity there isn't some way for us to educate them more gently. And as another commentard has pointed out, for all but a few sites, ad income will be negligible.

    2. jason 7
      Happy

      Spot On

      A site I use regularly does a cash drive every year to drum up funds for it so they don't have to use ad networks. All the money goes direct to them. No one else (well maybe PayPal) involved. I chuck them $20 a year.

  6. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    If we are talking "ethics" let's just draw our lines clearly...

    Re : “ethical ad blocking”

    There is absolutely nothing "un-ethical" about ad-blocking.

    Thanks.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If we are talking "ethics" let's just draw our lines clearly...

      Well, not entirely - publishers are offering you content, with the understanding that you'll get served some advertising in order to pay for it. If you don't want to take that deal then the "ethical" solution is to quit browsing their site, rather than using adblockers to consume their content for free.

      I get that ads can be fscking annoying, but if everybody blocks them and revenue streams dry up, then you'll potentially start losing content as it starts costing folk to provide it without any return.

      This is a crappy solution - who the hell is going to be interested in a 70/30 split with some random middleman? - but there has to be *some* mechanism for content providers to cover their costs.

      (anon because around here, suggesting ads are a necessary evil is about as socially acceptable as saying you like Win10)

      1. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: If we are talking "ethics" let's just draw our lines clearly...

        The content providers can push back on the advertisers. Have a standard and only accept ads that meet that standard. Just because an ad agency is offering money, doesn't mean that the ads don't need to be acceptable to the content provider. Newspapers, radio and TV used to do this in the past.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: If we are talking "ethics" let's just draw our lines clearly...

        who the hell is going to be interested in a 70/30 split with some random middleman?

        It's middlemen all. the way. down!

        More seriously, though: a significant part of the problem is that there are middlemen. This is a scheme to add another layer. WTF?

        An alternative: 'our/my little bunny slope on the internet doesn't welcome you with an avalanche of ads; instead, the not-insignificant costs to me of keeping the site up-to-date and current on $TOPIC can be defrayed by you, dear reader, by choosing to opt into my preferred micro-payments scheme via the links on every page, where you can select an auto-expiring micro-payment in proportion to the value you derive from this site...' .

        That's where the entrepreneurship comes in: invent the micro-payment scheme and nearly give it away. The micro-profit you make on each instance (or even each transaction) will quickly translate into global ubiquity and an interminable flow of virtual cash. Micro-payment scheme should neither be a product nor a service but a public service (possibly as near to pro bono as makes no difference).

      3. nijam

        Re: If we are talking "ethics" let's just draw our lines clearly...

        > ... with the understanding that you'll get served some advertising in order to pay for it

        That is a misunderstanding, not an understanding.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If we are talking "ethics" let's just draw our lines clearly...

      Being lectured about ethics by corporations is like being lectured by a psychopath, or a paedophile priest. They don't have the moral high ground to begin with.

  7. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    "Leathern is optimistic"

    Thanks. I'm just as optimistic that Optimal, like 90% of the other so called "web middlemen" (read : web parasites) will be out of business within the year.

  8. Archie Woodnuts

    Suggestion

    How about Optimal pay me to view their ads? That's a business model I can really get behind.

    1. Dr Scrum Master

      Re: Suggestion

      How about Optimal pay me to view their ads? That's a business model I can really get behind.

      Just don't tell them that it's not actually you viewing the ads but a bot.

  9. IGnatius T Foobar Bronze badge
    FAIL

    Ad-supported sites FAIL

    Imagine if the zillions of ad-supported sites actually had to deliver content worth paying for. Oh my!

  10. defiler Silver badge

    Protection?

    So they want us to pay them to *not* do something?

    Say, that's a nice web browser. Shame if something were to happen to it...

    No, no, a thousand times no, and whomever was suckered into this business model just doesn't live in the same world as the rest of us.

    1. kryptonaut

      Re: Protection?

      No, they don't want us to pay them not to put ads on the site. They want us to pay them to enable content providers to continue providing content, given that the ad-supported development model seems to be failing (due to the excesses of the advertisers, not the content developers themselves)

      I really don't understand why people here can't see that adblockers hurt the wrong people. There are typically at least four parties involved: content providers, ad brokers, advertisers and viewers.

      Viewers want to see the content (obviously, otherwise they'd visit some other website instead, or abandon the web). Providing the content incurs costs. One way to finance this is to ask an ad-broker (eg Google) to fill some space on the webpage with an ad. Advertisers pay the ad-broker for this space, and the ad-broker pays the content developer a cut.

      Viewing the site with an adblocker does not cost the ad-broker or advertiser anything at all. But it does mean that the content provider receives no payment from the ad-broker despite having given you the content you want.

      I totally understand that people don't like ads. But I don't understand why that seems to make it ok to expect people to give you great websites for free.

      1. defiler Silver badge

        Re: Protection?

        Yep. I totally get that. And as a rule I don't bother with blocking adverts. Except when I went to benchmark a DSL line and it hoovered up the bandwidth downloading ads instead.

        I'm generally not bothered by adverts unless they pop up and down (Tom's Hardware) or start playing noises. Even been known to click on them when they've been relevant.

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Protection?

        Viewing the site with an adblocker does not cost the ad-broker or advertiser anything at all. But it does mean that the content provider receives no payment from the ad-broker despite having given you the content you want.

        A temporary situation! Remember we are talking about markets, and supply and demand. Hence at some point the ad industry will be forced to increase the payment they make to websites for the placement of ad's. Likewise they will be forced to pay the ISP's (most probably mobile ISP's like Three sooner rather than later) to carry the ad's.

        So in time we can expect the volume of ad's to decrease and the micro payments involved to increase in value, creating a new norm. Obviously, at some point we will also most probably reach the point where more sites introduce a paywall, just like the newsagent who doesn't let you flick through the magazines without buying.

      3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Protection?

        "I really don't understand why people here can't see that adblockers hurt the wrong people. There are typically at least four parties involved: content providers, ad brokers, advertisers and viewers."

        Your second sentence is something I've pointed out here myself. But the only technology available to viewers is the ad-blocker and for reasons of security, if nothing else, the ad-blocker is not going to go away.

        Also, I'm sure the advertisers themselves, if they go online without an ad-blocker, find the obnoxious ads - and by association their advertisers - as obnoxious as the rest of us find them. At some point they're going to realise that that's how they're seen by the rest of us. Then they'll start to wonder why they're paying good money to have the general public find them obnoxious and whether this is costing them more than just the price of the ads.

        So there are a couple of reasons why the old business model is in its coffin being nailed down. If you're in the content industry you'd be better occupied in looking for a new business model rather than fighting ad-blockers. I don't think the present idea is going to be the one; it's simply a variation on micro-payments and the problem with micro-payments is likely to be the unit cost of processing each payment being too big a proportion of the whole.

      4. Richard Read

        Re: Protection?

        I understand, I just don't care.

        The content providers have brought this on themselves by not insisting on standards for adverts displayed on their sites. By standards I mean no malware, no scripts, no tracking, no autoplay audio or video, no popups, no slideovers, no interstitials, nothing that slows down loading times,

        As it stands the only solution that I will accept from the content providers that would lead to me not blocking ads is for them to charge me to view the site without any of the above. I would take either subscripts or micro-payments.

      5. nijam

        Re: Protection?

        > ...I don't understand why that seems to make it ok to expect people to give you great websites for free

        Almost the whole of this discussion has been about how to fund sites without advertising. Almost none of it has been about getting content for free.

      6. Vic

        Re: Protection?

        Providing the content incurs costs. One way to finance this is to ask an ad-broker (eg Google) to fill some space

        There are other way to pay your costs.

        An obvious example would be Groklaw. It was a high-volume, high-quality site for a decade. The reason it shut down[1] wasn't to do with a lack of funding - it was a lack of ensured privacy.

        Groklaw had a tip jar. We all put a few quid in - often a *very* few*. But it was enough to pay the bills - and when money was running out, PJ would ask for more money, and more would appear. That's the thing with community - people do their best to support the things that matter to them.

        Funding your site by advertising is more like dipping into your users' posckets without their say-so; you'll get away with it for a bit, but no-one really likes it.

        Vic.

        [1] Technically, Groklaw hasn't shut down - it just isn't very active any more. But it was extremely lively for a good decade...

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Faulty business model

    Most people simply won't pay for ad-blocking when they can get it for free.

    Especially when most of the content is crap.

    ESPECIALLY amidst rising poverty and inequality. Viva la decline!

  12. caffeine addict

    Since subscription as an alternative to ads comes up so frequently - how much would you pay for an ad free subscription to ElReg?

    1. Swarthy

      Re: how much would you pay for an ad free subscription to ElReg?

      Probably about 15 quid, or US$20 (-ish)

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      I could see going for say... $50 USD a year. Maybe more. How much do they get per reader per year now?

    3. Arthur the cat Silver badge

      Subscription rates

      Since subscription as an alternative to ads comes up so frequently - how much would you pay for an ad free subscription to ElReg?

      Good question (although slightly irrelevant as my ad blocker works well on El Reg :-). I'm not philosophically adverse to paying for it though if that's what it takes.

      The answer is probably a (low) single digit number of pounds a months, which is undoubtedly more than the ads get them from my visits (or would if I saw them), as I don't (wouldn't) click on ads on web sites because you never know what nasties lie behind. I've no idea what the going rate for simply exposing eyeballs to ads without clicks is, but it can't be that much per person.

      The utopian technical fix is micropayments of course. If that could be made to work, web sites with decent contents would get paid, crap web sites would either fold or try forcing ads on people and fold quicker as everybody boycotted them. A technically savvy site could try a halfway house - micropayments per ad free view, but with lump sum payments up front to avoid ridiculous bank/card transaction charges. I'm surprised a company like Stripe hasn't tried it.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    WTF?

    Ad-blocking threatens to snuff out growth in the digital display advertising market

    We want more than that. We want snuff out entirely, not snuff out.

    1. Chemical Bob

      Re: Ad-blocking threatens to snuff out growth in the digital display advertising market

      Gee, they say that like its a Bad Thing...

    2. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Re: Ad-blocking threatens to snuff out growth in the digital display advertising market

      And there was much rejoicing

  14. PyLETS
    Devil

    Paying for influence

    The old saying that no electable politician argues with the man who buys ink by the barrel still holds, in the sense that those who subsidise any kind of journalism do so for a reason. The ownership by powerful and ruthless oligarchs of much of the world's loss-making mass media isn't an accident, it's an operating expense for those who can afford to have politics dancing to their tune. And I'm willing to pay myself for media which I really can't think too well without through subscription. So asking what's going to happen to media if it isn't going to be ad supported is probably asking only half of the relevant question.

  15. tiggity Silver badge

    malware

    Too often ads serve malware.

    Basic security means no ads run.

    Only ads I will see are static ones with no java script (or from whitelisted js site e.g. from the domain I am visiting)

    I'm not risking angler, crytolocker et al to see ads

  16. OchaiThenoo

    Nothing unethical

    ...about blocking a potential vector for malware. Although even if the ad servers could guarantee 100% nasty free ad content (impossible), I'd still block it. I've never deliberately clicked on an ad, I have no interest in ads, nobody I know goes to any site to be tempted by ads.

    I've never considered subscribing to any site but I may do in the future if it was sufficiently interesting.

  17. User4574
    Stop

    Here are three simple ideas:

    * No Flash, No Javascript. This is non-negotiable, these represent a substantial security risk. Content providers expecting their readers to compromise their security posture are without ethics or moral standing.

    * Keep Ads out of the way of the content. This is a bugbear when browsing on a mobile device for the number of times when just scrolling down I've tapped on an ad instead is frustrating, more so when these ads redirect you to fake "Virus Warnings". Ironic that you have to break the security on a modern smart-phone in order to improve it.

    * Nothing Obnoxious and seizure-inducing. I don't care that these pay more, they're the very ones that will drive me to competing content providers or just block them outright.

    Would it be too much for me to draw a conclusion about the ease by which you can filter out unwanted content with Firefox, while the alternatives don't provide you that option? This functionality should be baked into the user agent to provide some sanity and security controls in an increasingly hostile Internet enabled by the MVVM junkies.

  18. Cynic_999 Silver badge

    I see nothing wrong with a mixed system. Ad-free sites can offer themselves as subscription-only sites, and free sites can retain the adverts. I pay a subscription for a good Usenet service, and I'd also pay for several sites that I use regularly, and PPV for a few sites I use infrequently. The average site could have very low subscription fees (< £1 per month) and still get plenty enough income to maintain the site.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In case you people didn't notice

    Microsoft is moving Windows to this business model by making it ad supported. Hey you got Windows 10 for free so you must accept some ethical advertising on your start menu and lock screen. If you don't like it then don't... oh rats! Windows 10 is installing right now on my PC

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: In case you people didn't notice

      And Apple moved to this business model years back, even though they have held back on it's usage. Remember the changes they introduced to iOS some years back that facilitated the serving of context sensitive ad's...

  20. Paul Shirley

    still sucking value out of the sites

    "or at least free of intrusive ads, and then split the revenue 70:30 with publishers."

    So, they intend to take the lions share of the revenue and still retain the option to show me ads? Not happening. I might be interested in a non profit middleman service that passed almost all the revenue on, policed the publishers compliance and did NOTHING more.

    For profit middlemen would quickly fall to the same pressures that created this cesspit while sucking value out of the system. The internet doesn't need more layers of leeches between us and content.

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: still sucking value out of the sites

      split the revenue 70:30 with publishers

      I saw this and also thought they were taking the p*ss. From the article it would seem that all this company will be doing is acting as a payment processor, hence a more realistic fee for their service would be 0.5~3%.

      I thus suspect that the way they are proposing to provide the service is via a proxy service/portal...

  21. Captain DaFt

    Adpocalypse

    Adpocalypse, Adpocalypse, Now there's a lovely sounding word!

    Is there anyway I can help speed it up?

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Optimal wants to charge users to view the web ad-free

    And I want a blowjob from Penelope Cruz. The odds of getting what I want are probably better than Optimal getting what it wants and I have zero chance of getting what I want.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Optimal wants to charge users to view the web ad-free

      Agreed re: Optimal. As for you, extremely unlikely but not impossible...

  23. Ropewash
    Flame

    Digital herpes.

    The malware that gets dragged in along with the ads these days is herpes and the ads themselves are the clap. I wear a rubber when I'm online in the form of script blockers and tracking blockers (oddly enough no actual ad blocker since those other two cut the ads out anyhow)

    This shouldn't be hard to fathom. If you are sleeping with whores then wear the damned rubber. The whores don't get to complain that less people are fucking them due to worrying about disease, they made the lifestyle choices that brought the diseases upon them.

    Not gonna push that analogy any further.

    The system is broken and I'm not going to open my machines up to attack just so people can get paid with minimal effort. I like the internet and I realize it requires paid work to get what we have. I do pay for content I find valuable as donations, whitelisting sites with clean ads, one-off payments and even subscription for things I'm using a lot. I draw the line when everyone else with .02 to share wants me to pay for their often value-less work with my own security.

    TLDR : Fix your busted funding model or die.

  24. J Ali

    I don't have a problem with adverts relevant to what I am looking at, but obtrusive adverts that track your history are what I am against. E.g. if I am reading a review about a video game I have no problem with seeing an advert from eBay telling me how much that game is listed for on eBay but what I object to is that if I have been browsing travel websites previously then seeing an advert for holiday fares etc.

    I hate adverts that pop over the content with a tiny fiddly close button or auto play videos etc as many people do.

    What I would suggest to content providers is that they could embed discreet text or static image in-line adverts that are not served via Javascript and don't do any tracking. The only tracking you need to do is when someone clicks the advert, and you can do that within the request query string after the advert opens in a new window.

    Surely it isn't that hard to create something where you submit your content (server side) and suggested adverts come back from the ad network which then get sent back out along with the page

    Adverts should be vetted by the ad network before they are served and they should be relevant to the content being displayed, not targeted by the visitors previous browsing history.

  25. nijam

    > ...will see $12bn worth of the $50bn annual display spend blocked by users...

    It may have cost $12bn, but if the users didn't want it (as evidenced by their use of an ad blocker), there is no basis for claiming it was *worth* $12bn.

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