ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Should You Use AdBlock?

Updated on August 16, 2016

With the rise of the internet came the rise of internet ads. And with the rise of internet ads has come the rise of ad blocking software. The most popular of these being the "AdBlock" extension.

Now, I'm not a fan of ads. But I understand why they're there, and why they have to stay. AdBlock is very handy, make no mistake, but it is also dangerous. It has the potential to negatively impact on everybody's internet browsing experience, even those who don't use it.

Please Note:

It is worth pointing out that in this hub I will talk mainly about AdBlock. However, this article applies more generally to all advert-blocking applications and extensions.

What Is AdBlock?

AdBlock is an extension that works with most modern web browsers, including Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari. It does pretty much what it says on the tin - it blocks almost every ad on the page, from banner ads to popup windows. And what's more, this extension is free (though you can donate to the creator).

This all sounds great. But, there's a reason AdBlock isn't on my list of the best apps and extensions for Google Chrome.

The Problems of AdBlock

I love the internet. I really do. Sure, it's got its flaws, but it's still an incredible creation. Almost any information or funny cat video is at my fingertips, and it's almost all available for free.

And there lies the problem thrown up by AdBlock.

Everything needs money, and websites are no exception. Between paying for web hosting, maintenance, and even purchasing a domain in the first place, every website needs money to keep it running. Why do you think Wikipedia asks for donations? And why do you think most other websites run those things we hate so much - adverts.

People Should Be Paid for Their Work

People work hard on their websites, often expending large amounts of time, energy, and money to produce their content. For many websites, ads are the only way owners can get a return on their investment. Blocking ads mean a reduction in site revenue, meaning less money for the people who make them. This in turn means the site may be shut down, so you lose access to the content you enjoy. Not to mention the fact that the site owner loses their income - and for some people, their web content may be their only source of income.

For me, this adds up to a no-brainer - I want the content, and I want to support the content creator, so I'm happy enough to see adverts.

Paid Memberships

Some of my favourite sites on the internet operate on a model where their content is free, but premium users or sponsors get extra perks, for example: early access to content, or fewer/no ads.

If sites like these start seeing a reduction in ad revenue, they may decide to change to a business model under which all users have to pay for the content. That's fine for some people, but personally I'd rather see some ads, buy merchandise, and sponsor projects, than have to pay for all content.

Ads Can Be Relevant

We all tend to think of ads as a nuisance, rather than something useful. But with the increasing use of cookies (for better or worse), most of us will see a marked increase in the relevancy of the ads we see. The internet knows what you want to see. These days, I find that many of the adverts I see online are for upcoming movies, games, or music that I am genuinely interested in; sometimes things that I wouldn't otherwise have known about.

By using programs like AdBlock, we are limiting the potential of the internet to deliver us content we want to see.

What To Do if You Really Hate Those Popups?

Personally, I also hate popup ads or a website with too many annoying ads. But most modern web browsers already have a built-in (and rather sophisticated) popup blocker to get rid of annoying popup ads.

More importantly, the internet has come a long way in the last few years, and popup adverts are very much out of fashion.

In fact, if you get a popup ad on a web page, it's probably one to avoid: either it's not been updated since 2004, or its content is of questionable legality. Good websites do not use any popup ads. So, using a popup blocker will not do any harm.

Switching Off AdBlock

Typically, my recommendation is to use popup blockers only instead of ad blocking software. If however you are a big fan of AdBlock then all is not lost. If you're visiting a website you love, and you know it makes its money from ad revenue, then why not turn off AdBlock?

As the picture on the right demonstrates, you can stop AdBlock from running on a page, or all pages on that domain. So if you wanted to support, say, YouTube, or Hubpages, you could allow AdBlock to show you adverts on those domains. You get to avoid annoying ads, and you get to support your favourite websites. I think it's the best of both worlds, personally.

Ads are the price of free content

Ads can be annoying, and AdBlock is a great program. If it makes it easier for you to browse the web, go ahead and use it. But personally, I'm going to be careful with it. Some sites virtually beg you to use AdBlock - if they have just too many ads or popups, you can't help it. Still, I feel I have to acknowledge that I don't need to use it all the time.

Cast Your Vote

Do You Use AdBlock on Your Web Browser?

See results

Thank You!

Thank you for taking the time to read this hub.. I hope you found it interesting. If you have any feedback, please feel free to vote in the poll, and you can also leave a comment below.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      buddhaanalysis 

      3 years ago

      I started using adblock when i saw very annoying ads placement on few online news paper. And many times ads are placed on websites were so irritating.

      But i myself want to make money using ads therefore i feel that publisher should avoid irritating ad placement so people could avoid adblock it's own.

    • Nesbyte profile imageAUTHOR

      Nesbyte 

      4 years ago from UK

      Hi Imogen,

      You're right, there are a lot of sites out there that go overboard on the ads, and it's really annoying (though I guess it must work for them, else they would have shut down).

      I'm certainly with you as far as targeted ads go; I find them a bit creepy and always turn off cookies because of them.

    • Imogen French profile image

      Imogen French 

      4 years ago from Southwest England

      I do use AdBlock, but have it disabled for any site where we the users earn revenue from the ads - so I do allow ads for HubPages of course. I do understand the point you are making, but find the shear number of ads on a lot of sites quite overwhelming, they flash away at you, distracting you from what you're trying to read, and it often take ages to load the page because of them as my internet is quite slow where I live. I also hate the way they target ads at you because of your age or gender, I find it intrusive.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)