Adnauseum = A New Challenge For Advertisers.

The issues faced with Adblock have become worrisome over the past few years. Facebook has just launched new projects to build around the walls that Adblock has created around internet users. With those new attempts to flow around the wall, new methods of building larger and more efficient walls have been created in order to provide a world where advertisements aren’t in the way of user experience.

The generation that most uses Adblock is also the generation that grew up with experiences of clicking an ad that would, in most cases, infect our computers with viruses. Adblock came about as a way to block out anything unwanted. With the concept now known to digital advertisers, the methods shifted on how to not only attract potential customers but to also work around something that was working against them.

Well, as if they had enough to work around, there seems to be another ad-block project starting. This time, it’s in the form of a new program called “Adnauseum”.

Adnauseum runs the same way as an ad-blocking software, except when blocking ads, the program clicks on all of them all while the user sees none.

As for the creation of this program, the official website states:

AdNauseam joins a broader class of software systems that attempt to serve ethical, political, and expressive ends. In light of the industry’s failure to achieve consensus on a Do Not Track standard, or to otherwise address the excesses of network tracking, AdNauseam allows individual users to take matters into their own hands, fighting back against unilateral surveillance. Taken in this light, the software follows an approach similar to that of TrackMeNot, employing obfuscation as a strategy to shift the balance of power between the trackers and the tracked. For further information on this approach, please see this paper.

The response refers to the amount of data that a company can track and uses it against them by making their numbers skyrocket as a form of protest against advertisers.

The results of this program are unknown and it’s reach has the potential to become another major thorn in the side of digital advertisers, but as the arms race between advertisers and ad-blockers becomes more prominent in the community we are starting to see a new page in the advancements of ad technology.

Adblock Plus = Working Around Facebook

Two days was all it took for the anti-advertisement app, Adblock to figure out how to work around Facebook’s new advertising methods.

Facebook started developing a software that would load sponsored content via a user’s newsfeed, which is a workaround from traditional, digital ads.

“Two days ago we broke it to you that Facebook had taken ‘the dark path,’ and decided to start forcing ad-blocking users to see ads on its desktop site,” wrote Ben Williams, communications and operations manager of Eyeo GmbH, maker of AdBlock Plus, in the post. “We promised that the open source community would have a solution very soon, and, frankly, they’ve beaten even our own expectations.”

Since advertising is now a part of the “Facebook experience”, the idea of having ads is an uneasy  feeling. As Facebook starts finding new ways to reach out to users, some of these methods can be intrusive.

“This sort of back-and-forth battle between the open source ad-blocking community and circumventers has been going on since ad blocking was invented, so it’s very possible that Facebook will write some code that will render the filter useless—at any time,” he wrote.

It’s an arms race for digital advertising. With more ways to reach out to potential customers, there are equal ways to stop it. The development on both sides is an interesting experience to watch.

Tough Measures = Tough New York Times

The New York Times has released a statement that they plan to block anyone using adblock when trying to read articles from their site. With countless other mediums in the world that consumers can use to obtain information, print has been pushed down into its niche. 

Mark Thompson had this to say:

“Trying to use and get benefit of the Times’ journalism without making any contribution to how it’s paid is not good. Everything we do should be worth paying for. Everything should feel like it’s HBO rather than a broadcast network.”

Mark Thompson isn’t wrong in saying this.  Every website that you visit has ads to generate the content that you want to see. Adblocking stops those ads from being seen by viewers thus affecting the outcome of who would pay to help promote that content.

In light of how digital advertising has shifted to become a more co-existing environment between users and advertisers, it seems that the New York Times hasn’t quite figured out how to improve the way subscribers view content,or even find a better way for users to turn off adblock.

Completely blocking people from viewing their content only hurts them when you consider that they are now holding people back from actually viewing that specific content. The idea should be to make that content more readily available by giving users a more manageable advertising space in order to achieve a higher ROI.

It seems that an old medium is still trying to adhere to the way people view and obtain content from back during those times. If they want to compete in todays market for digital content, they’re going to have to change the way they interact with viewers.

Ad Blocking Attribution + A Millenials View

(Disclaimer: I don’t hate Maine)

Last night, as I anxiously readied my delicate body to browse the dankest memes this side of planet Earth, I came across a link to a GQ article that read:

“Maine: Do We Need it?”

The jokes took a totally uneducated stab at the life of Mainers. It was clearly to troll people, but it gave me something to throw at my friend (she’s from Maine).

As I have, in the past, lightheartedly mocked Maine to get a rile out of her, I was thoroughly inclined to read it and then instantly send it to her to further drive her crazy. I do that because its funny, I think I’m funny, and you should think I’m funny too. Well, that didn’t happen. In an act of karma, the universe (as well as GQ Magazine) had a different plan. As I clicked on the article, I was greeted by a pop-up ad that I could not close out of:

Now, that picture is really cool. Especially for us, here, at C3Metrics. We love everything Star Wars! So I decided to continue and clicked on the “View With Ads” selection thinking that would bring me to your lovely and articulate research as to why the United States doesn’t need Maine. Unfortunately I was brought to another page where I was pretentiously told to have a seat and listen to why sites like GQ operate off of advertisements:

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Look, I totally get it, GQ, and I agree with you for the necessity of your ads. Thats how the internet can operate. It makes total sense, but after clicking on the option to view with ads, I should have been brought to the article. I appreciate your offer for coffee and water, but I just didn’t have enough time to stay. Im sure you understand that. Im more of a “chew and screw” kinda guy. What I’m trying to say is that this should have been instantaneous. Its not out of the question –  in todays day and age it needs to be. So while you were trying to get me to disable my adblock to read your article, I lost interest and moved on. The 20 seconds it takes to disable adblock is too much work. My time is limited.

I’m not here to tell you that advertising is bad – that’s not my point. Advertising moves the world, but there are better ways to achieve traffic to sites without losing viewers like myself. I could have sent the article to numerous friends and their friends could have seen it, too. It’s not just me. Their strategy lacked the ability to give me what I wanted in an effective manner. It would have been one thing if, after clicking “View with Ad’s”, I would have been brought to where I wanted to go, but to bring me to another tab with that message wasn’t necessary. It wasted my time and they lost traffic.