iOS 9 Safari content blockers debut to demand, denouncement & a high-profile delisting



  • Reply 101 of 421
    Apple looks to fix things that are in need of repair...sadly, the Internet itself is broken with grossly invasive ad structures, trackers, and an overall user experience that generally discourages web browsing, especially on a smaller touch screen like the iPad. Site designs and interfaces are all over the place, and anyone that can register a domain is an expert without having to belly up to the bar, financially or intellectually. It's a saloon on the Wild West.

    So things like Apps and News will hopefully create a conduit for legitimate content producers to create experiences tha provide some sense of great consistent design and delivery, no or minimal ads that are not invasive to the end users goal is consuming content, not avoiding ad land mines...
  • Reply 102 of 421
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,726member
    An unusually 'clean' thread. Virtually no 'garbage' posts. Really refreshing.

    I'd like to see an in depth and truthful article on on-line advertising. I struggle to see how it can work. I understand the technical aspects, but who ever clicks on these ads other than inadvertently? What are the ultimate conversion rates? At what point does a page no longer attract views due to over saturation of ads? Assuming that invasive ads will not go away but instead get worse and as a result sites like AI will offer a paid ad free gateway, at which point will such a gateway become self defeating by drawing away the very people the advertisers need i.e. People with money?
  • Reply 103 of 421
    freediverx wrote: »

    Perceived morality aside, there's a big difference between the two examples you cited. When you block web ads you are directly cutting off revenue from that site. When you mute or skip ads on TV, the advertiser has no way of knowing this and there is no immediate impact to the TV channel's revenue.

    Actually, over time, they are the same. Advertisers pay for the effectiveness of their ads, for ROI. If their ads are blocked or otherwise ignored, in all cases it will affect pricing and revenue for the ad host.

    On the web, of course, it is possible to measure impressions and clicks immediately, which makes the financial impact of ad blocking more immediate. But the effect is the same. Ad pricing ultimately depends on the number and types of viewers whose behavior you are able to influence.

    In addition, given the pernicious nature of user tracking in web advertising, I'm in favor of ad blocking. There are many other ways for publishers to monetize content. Customers should have options, and there is nothing wrong or immoral about that...
  • Reply 104 of 421
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,926member
    jessi wrote: »
    Gruber charges an arm and a leg for people to come to his site which is itself all advertisements- you can't block it because all he writes about is his app, his friends, himself, his political opinions (ignorant of course.) and then there's the "sponsored posts" which is %50 of the posts these days.

    There's nothing but advertising on that site.

    You must be going to the wrong site. One paragraph a week and a little blurb on the left is all the advertising I see. And it's free.
  • Reply 105 of 421

    Originally Posted by arthurba View Post

    Need more convincing? I don't think you are earning $9 in advertising revenue from me per year. More like $0.20 - as others in this thread have written - impressions don't pay well and I absolutely never ever click on ads. So getting a one time fee from me is way more cost-effective. And I doubt I'm the only person that feels this way (though the price point other people are ok with is likely to be quite variable).


    This is the problem with paywalls.  If sites would target to get the same revenue from paywalls as they get from ad revenue, then I am sure many people would gladly pay for an ad free experience.  Hulu offers to remove all ads for $4 a month for content from multiple content providers as opposed to CBS offering to remove ads for a single network for $6 a month.  I don't want to pay $6 dollar for each channel and end up with 20 apps for $120 a month, but I will pay an amount equivalent to the ad revenue if all my shows are in one app.


    In order for paywalls to work, they need to be easy (all content in one place and easy to find) and fair (not trying to get 10x the revenue from paywalls compared to ad revenue). Napster forced the music industry to sell music online. BitTorrent forced TV networks to sell shows online.  Ad blockers may force publishers to come up with an easy and fair revenue model for accessing online content.  Maybe users can get a choice, watch an ad or pay $0.01.  I'll pay $0.01.

  • Reply 106 of 421
    roakeroake Posts: 797member
    iMore loads in less than 10 minutes with ad-blocking turned on. These adding may make the site actually usable again for the first time in years and, ironically, simultaneously kill it.
  • Reply 107 of 421
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,167member

    Online publishers and their free with ads business model killed newspaper and magazine publishers. Now ad blocking is threatening your business model. By "you" I mean every one bitching about ad blockers. What goes around comes around.

  • Reply 108 of 421
    The new version of Adblock Plus for Safari Mac has a whitelist feature whereby ads that meet their minimum standard for decency (which includes no tracking) are automatically exempt from being blocked and the user doesn't have to white-list sites individually, though can presumably still blacklist them if their advertising is over the top. This is also on by default so users must opt out if they want to block all ads.

    I'm guessing they'll release an iOS version soon.

    So if AI's ads are decent they won't be blocked.
  • Reply 109 of 421
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,029member

    I'm very glad that Apple has created a way for ad blockers to run on iOS 9 and Safari. We now have a choice:


    - Users who want to experience iOS in the way that its creators intended can now do so. Thank you Apple!


    - Users who enjoy ads and the persistent intrusive invasion of their user experience and workflow are still free to run their system in an unfiltered mode. Rock on ad lovers, rock on! I completely support your passion - but I don't want to be part of it. I have other things that I'm passionate about, including my time and sanity, not ads.


    Implying that Apple somehow should be responsible for metering the overly aggressive behavior of the ad creators is crazy and unobtainable. The ad blasters are too aggressive and will never play by any rules that Apple "suggests." We know that and you know that. Suggesting that Apple mediate a middle ground is a unicorns and butterflies dream, not a bottom line reality. The ad blasters will kill and eat the unicorns and crush the butterflies into a sticky paste.


    Content blockers like Ghostery, AdBlock Plus, and Purify are defensive weapons. These are absolutely needed because we otherwise have no way to defend ourselves. If the threat didn't exist we wouldn't be looking for ways to defend ourselves. But the threat is real. Suggesting that we should have no means to defend ourselves from ad invasion is crazy talk. 

  • Reply 110 of 421

    Originally Posted by dreyfus2 View Post



    Most site owners make the comparison to print and tv ads, hiding the fact that these are not at all the same. No print or tv ad tracks where I was before, were I go next, how long I look at it, how fast I scroll etc. The comparison is just plain wrong.


    I know that publishers are not to blame, but the pressure on the ad networks and their software can only come from them.

    Actually, TV ads can tell a lot about what type of shows you watch but the thing I'm surprised about is how upset people are over tracking?  Why are the not upset over things like what the banks and credit card companies know?  Loyalty cards are the worst.   If you don't believe me, check out this article from 2012.  Target.  You can only imagine how much more sophisticated things have become in over 3 years.



    The war on privacy was lost a long time ago.  There is no halfway in between - we either fight for it or don't.  From what I can see and how people behave, they are not interested in it anymore.


    I'm not a fan of tracking either but I fought that fight too long and too hard back in the mid 2000's and was told to put my tinfoil hat away so I did.  We've reaped what we've sewn.

  • Reply 111 of 421

    If AI management is reading to find out what not to do, here is something that is quite annoying, and a little disingenuous:



    On several occasions I've been tricked into clicking one of these VigLink booby traps, as they appear to be normal links to some meaningful related/interesting page inserted by the comment author, only to find out it had been conscripted (hijacked) into an ad that I never would have clicked had it been a little more obvious.


    No, the tooltip (which only appears after a couple seconds of mouseover) does not make it obvious enough, but even if they had a 0 ms tooltip delay or double-underline (like some other sites use to distinguish from normal links) it would not make up for the patently obnoxious practice of unilaterally repurposing your own readership's comments, making them appear to be advertisers.


    They don't seem to appear (with as much frequency anyway) when the user is logged in to their forum account, so I guess that's something...but better to avoid the practice altogether.


    For a non-offensive advertisement practice, stick to simple, silent, stationary banners that don't obscure the content, with the content:ads screen estate being at least 2:1.


    I know I'm in the non-paranoid minority...but I'm not terribly worried about tracking. In fact, if (as seems to be the case) I will be subjected to "buy our crap!" my whole life, I'd much prefer it be crap that - oh I dunno - I might actually be grateful was brought to my attention unbidden and that I would consider buying than for random crap that has F-all to do with my interests. I'm sure the merchants can agree with that, as opposed to wasting money throwing all the craps at a wall (me) and seeing what sticks. The same goes for something that I've already recently purchased - don't keep showing it (or competing craps) to me. In fact it would be nice if there was some logic behind just how frequently some particular crap had been panhandled to me lately, and switch it up accordingly. If I didn't click within the first few impressions, chances are I won't ever (and am probably growing sick of the ad).

  • Reply 112 of 421
    Publishers need to come up with alternate ways to fund their content, such as accepting micropayments using Bitcoin to view articles. Want to read an article? Pay a half-cent with Bitcoin. Instant, secure, no transaction fees, problem solved. Then, good content gets rewarded instead of click-bait articles.
  • Reply 113 of 421

    Originally Posted by scotty321 View Post

    Publishers need to come up with alternate ways to fund their content, such as accepting micropayments using Bitcoin to view articles. Want to read an article? Pay a half-cent with Bitcoin. Instant, secure, no transaction fees, problem solved. Then, good content gets rewarded instead of click-bait articles.

    Micropayments are an excellent idea, but Bitcoin might not be the best way to do it because its price is so volatile (down 15% in one day, recently).  Maybe Apple could provide a micropayments scheme based on iTunes accounts, or someone could write an adblocker that turns a monthly subscription fee into monthly payments to sites based on usage.  

  • Reply 114 of 421

    I have never been bothered by ads on AppleInsider.  In fact, I like some of them.


    I love AppleInsider.


    PS  I would happily pay to subscribe, as I do the Washington Post.

  • Reply 115 of 421
    Originally Posted by hledgard View Post


    I have never been bothered by ads on AppleInsider.  In fact, I like some of them.


    I love AppleInsider.


    PS  I would happily pay to subscribe, as I do the Washington Post.


    AppleInsider may not be the worst offenders, but they're pretty bad.


    Here's my experience just now with ad blocking disabled:



    Section in red indicates actual content.



    Followed quickly by a modal pop-up ad, blocking the entire page.




    And now the experience with ad blocking:



    I'm sorry but if people continue to put up with this escalation of advertising without fighting back, we'll end up with this:




  • Reply 116 of 421
    WARNING: I'm going to be brutally honest here and it might get long in the tooth. However, it may contain nuggets of truth that you Kasper The Automated Slave and your team here at AI might consider as discussion points in the near future.

    1. Kasper The Automated Slave - a truthful screen name if there ever was one, because a) congratulations for "automating" curation (see [@]proline[/@]'s post above); and b) for not being a very good editor because editing is a hands-on activity that can't successfully be automated. Regardless, you're continuously trying anyway and want to continue "automating" the making of money from a computer-generated process. That's no longer going to be easy, automated... or successful IMHO.
    2. Appleinsider - a name that I can only assume that you luckily fell upon very early on and very possibly wanted to become...which unfotunately... you are not. Your posts are 90% regurgitated web content found elsewhere and with better depth. Your 2 "exclusive" topics are those either created by DED and woefully lacking any editing (double paragraphs, repetition of thoughts and themes, etc.), or playing around with your drone and keeping tabs (of late) about the progress of the new Apple Campus. Your "hands-on" posts are technically true only because you touched them for a couple of minutes, whereas the common and colloquial meaning of hands-on is a lie and a rehash of what you have scraped from other sites or have been told at a demo.
    3. Content presentation - apart from the above, how many times in the last 7 years that I've been coming here have members continuously told you here in these forums that the front-end of the site is too bloated, is slow, and often times the worst site they visit daily? How many times have you worked diligently to fix that? How many ads, banner-blocks and divs have you and your team decided to... painful as it is... EDIT from this site as a compromise to your faithful readers?
    4. Most Valuable Asset: the AI forums and a core number of AI Members that contribute here. Oddly enough, actual industry "insiders" and "insights" that are not reflected on the front page, nor monetized or used efficiently to bolster your importance as a "must visit" web entity within the Apple community.
    5. Technical Intelligence - In close relationship to both #3 and #4 above, rather than clean up your web presence, you decide instead to develop and use your limited funds to create a "web app". Besides being widely despised and even discouraged by Apple itself because it adds NOTHING but unnecessary bloat to the App Store, even your most valuable followers either a) don't use it, and b) have spent THEIR time to tell you what's wrong with it... rather than concentrating on THE site and forums and making them better. Wasted effort, energy, resources... and in the end... opportunity to stand out among your competition.

    Ads - so now we come to the meat of your post and are offered a whole platter of foul Swiss cheese with an abundance of sour w(h)ine. Rather than embracing the opportunity (that word again!) to "ask" for suggestions from your loyal readers, or objectively state your faults and a mission statement how you plan to address them, you take the easy way out and point to why ads are needed (like we don't know that!) and why WE should white-list your site without giving ANY reasons beyond "think of the jobs" (i.e. children") lost. IF YOU WERE doing your job to the best of your ability and using the collective intelligence available to you... dare I say... you would NOT need to ask for support nor suffer the consequences of your pathetic buffet of excuses.

    OK. That was brutal... and no... I will not apologize for my assessment. IF you are serious and once you take an objective hard look at what you have here at AI... and what you don't... and decide to leverage the positives, you just might survive the "Website Culling of 2015".

    You stated "adopt or die" as a footnote. Now start to believe that and plant seeds for future success, rather than becoming a "smelly fish head" more commonly known as a "victim".

    Disclaimer: I've been working in multiple industries in constant flux since the very early '80s, from typesetting, litho, offset printing, dead-tree publishers, photographers, ad agencies, education and entertainment.

    If there's anything in my post here that I can tell you as fact and absolutely not simply an opinion, it is the reality of "adopt or die". That is a choice that only you and your team can make and act upon to have even a small chance of influencing the outcome. I have experienced certain entire industries that have died no matter what the individual proprietors have done to mitigate it. I don't believe that is what you/we are facing here.

    You simply have work to do, and no... at this point... it can not be "automated".

    Thank you. Brilliantly said. I am one of those that have been bitching for ages to fix this POS (technically/ad bloat) site. Great suggestion for AI to actually listen to their loyal readers and take suggestions. AI is the SOLE reason I installed Crystal but after reading some of the forum posts have now switched to Purify so I can whitelist other sites. My original post on this subject was brutal but short and to the point. Here it is...

    "Your website is the problem! You reflect 100% of the problem!

    When it comes to performance hindering bloat loaded with crap ads AI is the king! You are the absolute worst site I visit regularly in terms of bloat and slowness to load. Now that I have installed Crystal, solely because of YOUR site, instead of the absolutely horrible performance you have been providing, your site now loads MUCH MUCH MUCH faster and is no longer a huge annoyance. You are a victim of your own stupidity for building a dog of a site from a performance and advertising bloat standpoint. So get off your soapbox and fix it! Figure out how to build a proper infrastructure stripped of all the bullshit that annoys to no end, then come back to us begging for forgiveness and only then ask us politely to whitelist you."
  • Reply 117 of 421
    dysamoria wrote: »
    I must admit this was a decent article. It's also one of the very few Apple Insider articles that didn't have any egregious typos, grammatical errors, or other of various types of mistakes that proof reading can solve. But there's part of the problem: quality of content and effort to behave like a professional. It's sorely lacking in the current print magazines (here's looking at you, Future Publishing), which obviously eliminated proof reader employment and production time time in order to compete with instant publishing of the Internet and eliminate jobs... and that's saying nothing of how utterly awful the "free" Internet is. If web publishers across the board were actually interested in their content, they'd possibly put a bit more effort into it and that would make it more worthwhile to deal with unobtrusive ads. But ads aren't unobtrusive, which now takes me to my final and key point:

    Yet another sob story from the "capitalists" (specifically marketing warfare people) that saw a medium, invaded it, corrupted and hijacked it, and utterly ruined that medium for everyone but themselves. The Internet has gone from being an incredibly useful information utility, to being an incredibly slow, convoluted, obfuscated disaster of distraction and wasted bandwidth (and time).

    Let me clarify: ad blocking tools are an invention to service a necessity.

    Clarification of clarification:

    They did it to themselves!!!!

    If this leads to new pay sites with quality, curated content, and ads that aren't a burden to the reader and their Internet devices, then maybe we can finally move into some kind of maturity for this medium, after the unregulated free-for-all that went from "great free content for everyone" to "horrible and near useless for everyone but ad impression counters".

    While we're at it, let's do the same with software and instill some damned warranty laws (in the USA there's nothing at all).

    Computers have been a Wild West of unrestrained abuse. While the corporations were busy complaining about intellectual property theft by their own customers, they were doing everything in their power to avoid having any and all accountability for their own behaviors. Capitalism has, historically and contemporaneously, repeatedly shown that it requires regulation in order to restrict it from abuses without end. There's no self-regulation. Ultimately, the people and/or their governments have to step in and say "actually, that's not ethical". The irony here is how capitalists abuse and destroy the system and then have the audacity to tell us that WE are "morally reprehensible" by attempting to take back a little of the sanity they destroyed.
    That is the most sane perspective on this topic I've read yet.
  • Reply 118 of 421
    Its not that consumers are unwilling to pay for content by watching ads; it how much are they willing to pay. When ads were displayed along the sides, it it was unobtrusive and felt much like reading a magazine. Ads were there to be seen, and could be read or skipped past at the users discretion.

    Apparently these methods were insufficient or content providers got more greedy, wanting to sell more and more ads. the in-you-face methods used these days, multiple pop-ups, false clicks taking you to other sites are much too much. If users are resorting to ad-blockers I think content suppliers have no one to blame but themselves.
  • Reply 119 of 421

    Originally Posted by igorsky View Post

    Then Über comes along and completely uproots their safe hiding hole, giving power back to the riders. And now drivers of yellow cabs are up in arms over their livelihood, as if they're entitled to earn one by providing a terrible service.


    Cab drivers are up in arms that Uber is not regulated the same way that their own service is, despite the fact that Uber is obviously a direct competitor and provides an identical form of service. In other words, the gripe is not about having to compete on quality, but rather that the same rules should apply to everyone within the industry. 

  • Reply 120 of 421
    clemynxclemynx Posts: 1,552member
    I block all ads, everywhere. Every time I try disabling Adblock I only see stuff I couldn't care less about, ugly ads, stupid ads, ads for stuff I don't want to see. Ads aren't elegant, they disrupt the design of websites. If I don't want ads in an OS why should I want them on the web?
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