The history of ad blocking

A 4-post collection

Ad Blocker 2020: An invisibility cloak for the wild wild web?

An ad blocker of the nearest future is yet another personal assistant, that guides you to your profit and safety through the labyrinth of marketing technologies. Today ad blockers hide ads from you — tomorrow they will have to hide you from ads.

Personal assistants have recently become a very trendy type of apps. Siri, Cortana, Google Assistant are being used globally; local markets have their own products, like Alisa by Yandex in Russia or Duer by Baidu in China. But what do ad blockers have in common with these apps that tell you the weather, build routes, search the web and manage events in your calendar? »

The history of ad blocking, part 3: Lawmaking, paid content and new tracking technologies

The final part of the History contains a brief overview of the regulation measures affecting blockers in different regions of the world. We will also see how companies dependent on advertising find other ways to earn money or track customers. If you’ve missed the previous parts or want to read them again, here there are, the first and the second.

The fourth installment of the series will be the most interesting, as we will speculate on the future of blockers. »

"Sing, Goddess, the wrath": a history of ad blocking, part one

For as long as advertisements have existed, people have been trying to avoid them. No surprise there. An advertisement is an unwelcome communication that distracts attention and intrudes at its own discretion and for its own purpose.

Marketing experts writhed in agony when video cassette recorders first started gaining popularity. "It’s over now," they thought. "TV advertising is dead. People will no longer just switch channels (where they can be caught) or go to the kitchen (where they can still hear the ads). Now they can avoid an ad altogether by just cutting it off!" »