Chrome’s Ad Blocker Goes Worldwide in July

Posted on January 10, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Cloud with 21 Comments

Google announced this week that its ineffective ad blocker for Chrome will be distributed worldwide starting in July.

“We follow the Better Ads Standards when determining which websites to filter ads on in Chrome. These standards were developed by the Coalition for Better Ads, an industry group dedicated to improving the web advertising experience, based on feedback from over 66,000 consumers around the world,” Google senior product director Ben Galbraith explains. “The Standards identify 12 experiences that users find intrusive and that advertisers, publishers, and technology vendors should avoid showing.”

In other words, Chrome’s ad blocker doesn’t actually block ads, which makes sense when you consider that over 90 percent of Google’s revenues come from ads. Instead, it blocks only those ads that do not conform to the standards developed by a consortium of which it is a part. And as I’ve described in the past, this consortium exists for only one reason: To ensure that ads remain a central part of the web experience. Their strategy is to not support the ad types that most annoy users.

Anyway, Google added this ad blocker to Chrome back in February 2018, though it only supported users in North America and Europe. Starting July 9, it will be rolled out to the rest of the world.

“Our ultimate goal is not to filter ads, but to build a better web for everyone, everywhere,” Google confirms. “Chrome’s enforcement of the Coalition’s standards has inspired many website owners to improve the advertising experience on their sites in a way that benefits users. In the U.S., Canada, and Europe, website owners have successfully been able to make changes to the ads on their sites. As of January 1, 2019, two-thirds of all publishers who were at one time non-compliant to the Better Ads Standards are now in good standing. Further, out of millions of sites we’ve reviewed to date, less than 1% have had their ads filtered.”


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Comments (21)

21 responses to “Chrome’s Ad Blocker Goes Worldwide in July”

  1. jbinaz

    Anyone else use a Pi-hole? Set one up a long time ago and love it. Most of the sites that I know rely on ads I subscribe to (such as this one), so I don't feel as bad.

    It's fairly stable, and it blocks about 26% of the traffic. I did find that some of the lists I used were over-zealous in blocking Microsoft sites, so I have had to add a number of exceptions. But it does make a huge difference, as I don't see nearly as much crap.

  2. Eric Dunbar

    Others have mentioned Brave. Not a bad browser but the fact that it has a company behind it does make it suspect. When profits get involved we can never trust someone with our privacy.

    Brave does have an interesting idea that I would like to see expanded. BAT. A way to pay sites based on the amount of time you spend there.

    The problem with the current ad driven model is that either you can't pay companies for an ad free experience or to stop tracking you or when they ask for payment it's too much relative to the value the item provides.

    Quite often the price to go ad free just boggles the mind. It's as if they don't want you to go ad free.

    It would change the way we relate to ads if we could automatically pay for articles in an a la carte fashion to avoid ads. Me, I would love to set a $20/month budget for my reading, for example.

    I'm sure I'm currently not worth much in the way of advertising because I use browsers or browser extensions to block ads or never click on them. I'm also not inclined to drop $60 or $100 on content sites I visit only once or twice a month. Purchasing access to articles also often costs more than a few dollars, to encourage you to buy a subscription, no doubt. Not worth my time or my money.

    But, if each publisher were to get $0.25 or $0.50 per article I read I'd be happy.

    In the end our best and last hope for a truly privacy respecting browser (advertising is the opposite of privacy respecting) is Mozilla. It's about as trustworthy as you'll find and it's a testament to the robustness of its founding charter that it's still around and doing well in the face of the deep pockets of Microsoft, Google and Apple.

  3. MikeGalos

    So, basically, it blocks ads from all of Google's competitors on Google's dominant phone operating system.

    I'm pretty sure that's almost the textbook definition of Abuse of Monopoly Power.

  4. ZeroPageX

    Unfortunately, pop-overs are considered fine. These are the most intrusive as they require input to get out of the way. Why does every site think this is OK?

  5. irfaanwahid

    Auto video play on websites is what I cannot stand.

    That should be blocked right away.

    I have been using Brave for a while now and I really like it. It is brilliant in blocking ads.

  6. kjb434

    if it can't block all ads, it's not an ad blocker. Ublock Origin is the best domain blocker (which blocks ads) out there for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge.

    P.S. Works great on Edge.

    • kjb434

      In reply to kjb434:

      For you more adventurous, you can also get a Raspberry Pi and installed Pi-Hole to do this for your whole home network. This works wonders too. Picture no ads on YouTube on Xbox One and your mobile devices.

  7. RM

    OK, Google exists because of advertising. I am very skeptical that this solves much, Google is just trying to get people to not block ads. However, while I don't mind ads on web sites, I find there is a lot of web sites with very obtrusive ads still. So, I am not sure this "Better Ads Standards" goes far enough. With Google's billions at stake, I am betting on there still being a lot of obtrusive ads.

  8. ChrisRDale

    I wonder if it will do anything for the sites that have Pop Ups that don't let you access, or strong arm you to take out a memberships when they detect an Ad Blocker extension installed in your browser?

  9. AnOldAmigaUser

    A Google ad-blocker...probably blocks any ad not served by Google. Talk about the fox guarding the henhouse.

  10. chris122380

    uBlock Origins extension on Windows still does a better job at blocking annoying ads then does chrome without it.

  11. curtisspendlove

    Woot! False sense of security for the win.

  12. Chris_Kez

    I really wish all the tech companies that don't rely primarily on advertising-- and the content providers who do-- would come together and find a way for sites to monetize and connect with readers so we can largely end tracking and greatly reduce advertising. Surveillance capitalism has got to go.

  13. Skolvikings

    Well at least they are blocking the really annoying ones. Am I right? #sigh

  14. dontbe evil

    does it block also google adsense? :D

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