Stop, Thief! Why Using an Ad Blocker Is Stealing

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apiltch

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Like a number of extensions, a new Android web browser blocks Internet advertising. However, filtering out ads is wrong and puts millions of job in jeopardy.

Stop, Thief! Why Using an Ad Blocker Is Stealing : Read more

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OnkelCannabia

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Nov 9, 2013
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Advertisers have brought this on themselves. I used a PC with a 3 GHZ single core when my main PC had hardware trouble and I could barely surf the internet because the ads brought it to its knees. Once I installed adblock plus performance was normal again.

Then there is all those ads trying to trick you. Fake download buttons, fake warning messages, scripts that install toolbars without your consent and whatnot. I daresay surfing the internet without adblock is more dangerous than surfing the internet without a good firewall (as long as you still use the windows firewall or some other basic protection).

I don't just use adblock plus I recommend it to everyone for their own protection. Especially those that don't know much about PCs. Not only are they dragging your bandwidth and CPU down, they are actually a security risk.
 

positr0n

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May 22, 2015
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The author failed to explain how not watching an ad is stealing. Who gets the "stolen" ad time money? If its MY attention the ads are aiming for, then I can chose what to watch or what not to watch. If I throw away junk mail is that also stealing? Poorly written and conceived article.
 

Zaranthos

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Apr 9, 2014
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Advertising is wasted on me even if I look at it. I don't click ads and I don't go buy stuff because I saw an advertisement. So blocking it just removes the pesky annoyance of blinking, annoying, trickery, spyware, adware, lies, deception, stealing MY bandwidth that I PAY for to look at legitimate content, etc.

The current state of much advertising is close to terrorism for your computer. Hijack you with deception and inject ads into your browser. I could go on and on. It's not some passive thing like radio and TV you can ignore because it tries to take over your life and force you ingest what it shoves down your throat. The normal working state of computers is destroyed by advertising at any cost and the consumer be damned. It's not just a few bad apples either it's legitimate companies like Microsoft (Bing toolbar), Oracle (Java), etc. Sure you can argue the user should pay attention to check boxes and agreements before clicking yes but most users do not because those things are time consuming impediments to what the user wanted to do.

So advertisers drove users to extreme measures of trying to block every ad known to man because advertisers abused us. You have only yourselves to blame.
 

jimmysmitty

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The biggest problem I have is the popups and the ads that take you away from the page itself. I have been to some sites that without the TPL lists in IE or Adblocker in FF I will get pushed out of the site to their site.

On top of it, 95% of the ads are junk and all they do is expose PC novices to more risk. When I worked at a local PC shop we always set the TPL lists in IE to block the ads and when we did a virus cleanup/optimization we did the same. It helped prevent novices from being exposed to stupid ads that they might click on and download junkware/malware unknowingly.

On top of that, some ad servers get compromised and are injected with malware ads that use exploits and loopholes in IE/FF/Chrome/Safari to install their programs even without the users knowledge and that is wrong.

I am all for websites and content providers making money for the mostly free content they provide but they should also make sure the ads they are using are not malicious and are legitimate ads as well. Until then I will continue to use TPL lists and adblocker to keep my PC and my families PCs safe.
 

CRITICALThinker

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Feb 2, 2014
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The two reasons I use adblock are 1 - because I am sick and tired of the 1+ minute unskippable youtube ads, I was fine with the banners and other ads on the page, as it pays for the content, youtube as well as the content creator. 2 - because I hate browsing and being a tab hoarder (not the worst offender, but I often have 15+ open) and having soulnd playing on 5 of them randomly. If I frequent sites that have no sound enabled or video ads I will add them to my personal whitelist
 

whiteruski

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Nov 7, 2013
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Site I support I disable ad-block for. Sites that are not usable without ad-block, and without being able to use ad-blocking software, I would not frequent. Its that simply.

If the site doesn't take time to pick its sponsors and place appropriate ads, it hurts the site (because I like them less) and it hurts the advertiser (because I really like them less).

I watch less TV as a result of advertising and I would consume less internet sites as well. I already do this on youtube where commercials are intrusive to the end user experience and I simple close the tab and do something else.

I don't feel like spending 10 minutes out of every half an hour watching ads and I certainly will not tolerate it on the web.
 

Wolfshadw

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So is it also "stealing" every time I change the channel or mute the TV whenever commercials come on? How about when I add my phone number to the Government Sponsored, "Do Not Call" list? Isn't that ad blocking as well?

I've realize that the intention of advertisement is to make an individual aware of some product or service, but I, for one, do not need (or want) it shoved down my throat. If I want a product or service, I have the resources to find it on my own.

-Wolf sends
 

2Be_or_Not2Be

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Aug 23, 2013
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If sites like Tom's will let themselves be held financially liable for any harm incurred to my PC when a malware ad from their advertising networks infects it, then sure, I'll put them on a whitelist.

Also love the use of the specious argument - "Every time you block an ad, what you're really blocking is food from entering a child's mouth." Think of the children, you ad-blocking heathens!
 

Zepid

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Jan 14, 2014
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If you want me to watch ads then use your power as the press to push for legislation to remove bandwidth caps. I'm not going to waste one ounce of my 250GB Comcast data cap on non-consensual ad data.
 

Zepid

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Jan 14, 2014
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As far as I'm concerned web-ads are theft. I have a data cap I can't get around on my home and mobile internet. You're taking money out of my wallet when you display a non-consensual advertisement.
 

PEJUman

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Apr 27, 2008
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There is a solution to this problem. few people here already mentioned why adblocker exist, ads have gone insane and between the bait, diversion and intrusion. They have brought this drove of adblockers themselves.

Some of us, who read toms with ad blocker do realize we're hurting you, and sending a clear message across: i.e. we had enough!

So why not run both:
- ads supported page for non members.
- ads-free donation/subscription model login based for those who appreciate your work and would like an ads-free experience.
 

zinabas

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Apr 17, 2009
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Toms writing about ad block being evil just got it removed of my whitelist, thanks tom for showing who you really care for, I'll do the same.
 

3ogdy

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Jul 13, 2009
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Well done!
 

McHenryB

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Jan 31, 2015
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When advertisers act responsibly, and web sites ensure that they only carry advertisements from advertisers that do so, there might be some mileage in this argument. But intrusive advertisements, that sometimes seem impossible to get rid of, let alone ones that load unwanted crap on your computer have led to a backlash from consumers. Ad blockers are a necessary evil nowadays to ensure a pleasant browsing experience.

If I read a magazine I will read those advertisements that interest me and pass over, with just a glance, those that don't. If the publishers were to somehow glue the pages open so that it took some force to bypass an advertisement I would stop buying that magazine. That is the physical equivalent of what you try to do digitally.

Put your own house in order before posting whining articles that are clearly just self-interest. Think about your customers for a change.
 

tigermyth

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May 22, 2015
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What a load of garbage. I don't block advertisements because I "ain't got no time for that."

I block advertisements because they used to cripple my system to slow crawl. They also can infect my computer and have in the past without clicking.

Bad advertisements aren't just part of the deep web. Even LARGE well known companies occasionally get hit with virus plagued ad servers. Happened to Yahoo on their home page.

I used ad block and flash block and it isn't theft, it is COMMON SENSE protection of my system.
 

jwftw

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May 22, 2015
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I agree with blocking Ad Blocker users. You enjoy surfing websites without paying for those sites, then let them make some money to continue providing you with content. I remember more then a decade ago when people complained endlessly on whether their favorite hardware reviewer was taking money from manufactures or not. If Ad Blockers are interrupting a websites revenue stream then they are stuck having to make up the money else where. As I see it, none of my favorite sites charge me for the content I consume, and I am greatful for that. As for using an Ad Blocker to protect yourself, that is the most foolish method to rely on. I've been in IT for 2 decades, and I always recommend a good security suite for users who are not experienced or simply need piece of mind. This OP-ED is pointing out the obvious issue here, if you want free content, stop blocking revenue streams. You ARE entitled to look at what you want to on the internet, but you are NOT entitled to content that comes from sites you cut off from their revenue streams.
 

bob001001

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May 22, 2015
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The writer assumed that his content was worth the ad revenue that an ad blocker was stealing from him. This article proves that premise false.
 
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