This past weekend I read an article from ARS Technica by Ken Fisher, in which he describes why adblocking hurts the web sites that you love to visit. He first explained that many of the people who surf the Internet and visit sites they enjoy, did not know that using adblocking hurt the web site itself. He explained that there is a misconception that if people visit a site and do not click on ads, that using an adblocker should have no monetary affect  on the site. But the authors stated this:

Most sites, at least sites the size of ours, are paid on a per view basis. If you have an ad blocker running, and you load 10 pages on the site, you consume resources from us (bandwidth being only one of them), but provide us with no revenue. Because we are a technology site, we have a very large base of ad blockers. Imagine running a restaurant where 40% of the people who came and ate didn’t pay. In a way, that’s what ad blocking is doing to us. Just like a restaurant, we have to pay to staff, we have to pay for resources, and we have to pay when people consume those resources. The difference, of course, is that our visitors don’t pay us directly but indirectly by viewing advertising.

He also stated this:

My argument is simple: blocking ads can be devastating to the sites you love. I am not making an argument that blocking ads is a form of stealing, or is immoral, or unethical, or makes someone the son of the devil. It can result in people losing their jobs, it can result in less content on any given site, and it definitely can affect the quality of content. It can also put sites into a real advertising death spin. As ad revenues go down, many sites are lured into running advertising of a truly questionable nature.

The bottom line is that adblocking does have an affect on web sites, especially the web sites you enjoy visiting. But what was also presented was an experiment that ARS Technica tried, in which the company blocked out the entire content of their site for those who used adblockers. The experiment worked very well, but the results were mixed. The assumption was that people who used adblockers were doing so to stop a web site from making money. But that was not the case, since many people were not aware that this was the result of blocking ads on their favorite sites.

But for those of you who use the popular adblocking program called Adblock Plus which is a Firefox add-on, you can help your favorite site by a simple mouse clock. In the program drop down menu, and when you are on your favorite site, just click to disable adblocking on that site, or any sites you enjoy visiting.

Comments welcome.

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