Thursday April 20, 2017

Google Will Build an Ad-Blocker into Chrome

This could be a strange decision for Google, an ad-oriented company, but the inclusion of a native ad-blocker is likely a defensive maneuver: Google’s blocker would only block specific, "bad" ads, and that may be good enough to convince Chrome users not to install a third-party extension, which would block all ads. Some say that this is another antitrust case waiting to happen.

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The ad-blocking feature, which could be switched on by default within Chrome, would filter out certain online ad types deemed to provide bad experiences for users as they move around the web. Google could announce the feature within weeks, but it is still ironing out specific details and still could decide not to move ahead with the plan, the people said. Unacceptable ad types would be those recently defined by the Coalition for Better Ads, an industry group that released a list of ad standards in March. According to those standards, ad formats such as pop-ups, auto-playing video ads with sound and "prestitial" ads with countdown timers are deemed to be "beneath a threshold of consumer acceptability."