AdBlock Plus: Facebook’s ad-block sidestep is ‘anti-user’

Popular advertising filtering service AdBlock Plus has criticised Facebook after the social media firm announced plans to sidestep ad-blocking software.

In a blog post earlier this week, Facebook said that its new ad controls and designs “address the underlying reasons” for people turning to ad-blockers.

“As we offer people more powerful controls, we’ll also begin showing ads on Facebook desktop for people who currently use ad blocking software,” Facebook elaborated.

Now, AdBlock Plus has reacted, calling it an “unfortunate move, because it takes a dark path against user choice”.

The ad-blocker said there was no reason to overreact however, as “cat-and-mouse” games have existed in tech for a long time.

The service said users should be allowed to choose what they want to block, especially when Facebook “apparently agrees” that people are justified in using ad-blockers.

AdBlock Plus: Facebook’s move takes a ‘dark path against user choice’

“In any case, it’s hard to imagine Facebook or the brands that are being advertised on its site getting any sort of value for their ad dollar here: publishers (like Facebook) alienate their audience and advertisers (the brands) allow their cherished brand name to be shoved down people’s throats. Yikes,” the AdBlock Plus post continued.

Related: The future of advertising agencies: technology killed the ad man

The service asked whether it would’ve been better for Facebook to consult ad-blocking users instead of side-stepping the software.

“If nothing else, all this attention from Facebook shows that ad blocking has finally made the big time. We’re ready for our close up…”

It’s also worth noting that AdBlock Plus didn’t respond to Facebook’s comments regarding paid whitelisting — a practice AdBlock Plus engages in.

“Some ad blocking companies accept money in exchange for showing ads that they previously blocked — a practice that is at best confusing to people and that reduces the funding needed to support the journalism and other free services that we enjoy on the web,” Facebook wrote in its initial blog post.

As part of its Acceptable Ads programme, AdBlock Plus gets paid by “larger properties” to serve up “non-intrusive advertisements”.



Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights. sign up

Welcome to Memeburn

Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights.