By Yanwen Zhang
Photo source: pixabay by coyot
In 2015, 198 million
people globally are
blocking ads, up 41
percent from 2014. 
Photo source: flicker “The need to be...SAFE!”by ohsoshy14
In 2015, 47% of American readers
of news websites and 39% of British
readers are using ad-blocking
software, grew 48% from last year,
to 45 million users.  
with ad-blocking no ad-blocking
with ad-blocking no ad-blocking
Adblock Plus, one of the leading
software providers, claims 300
million downloads of its app. 
Photo source: flicker “Alliance for Audited Media launches its ad blocker detection service”by Sofiya Karki
As mobile adoption increases, ad-blocking software follow.
In mid-September 2015, Apple released iOS 9, its first operating
system to have built-in ad-blocking support for Safari.
A few days later, Tumblr Founder Marco Arment released his $3
ad-blocking app called Peace, which quickly shot to the #1 paid
app in the iTunes Store.
Photo source: flicker “Apple CEO Tim Cook” by Mike Deerkoski
Photo source: taken by author December, 2017
with ads being one of the most important
financial resources for lots of websites, ad-
blockers are causing problems to them.
“Imagine running a
restaurant where 40
percent of the people
who came and ate didn’t
pay. In a way, that’s what
ad blocking is doing to
-- Ken Fisher, writer for technology
news website Ars Technica 
Photo source: flicker “AIOLI-AD-18” by flashlive2007
Google lost more than $6-billion
(USD) in revenue forgone from
advertising blocked by Google
Search users. 
Photo source: flicker “google” by Neon Tommy
Digital publishers are
estimated to stand to lose
over $27 billion by 2020,
accounting for Almost 10%
of Total Digital Advertising
Photo source: flicker “Sad” by Tabi Aziri
“Rather than scream “theft!” at ad-block users, we need to
find a new approach that takes into account their fears while
ensuring that online media still has a place in business.”
-- Danny Crichton, TechCrunch contributor
Photo source: flicker “Self reflection” by Stuart Beard
700 publishers and bloggers have been paying to get whitelisted on
Photo source: flicker “good list” by agings
However, Adblock users
can also tailor the app
to exclude even the
Ask users to pay for ad-free sites
Google lunched Contributor program that proposes ad-free navigation
in exchange for a fee ranging from $1 to $3 per month.
Photo source: pixabay by firmbee
Dating site OkCupid shows a
message to ad-blocking users
complimenting their tech savvy
and asking for a reasonable one-
time donation of $5. 
Photo source: flicker “Online Banking” by Daniel Foster
The Guardian prompts donations with the message: “We
notice that you’ve got an ad-blocker switched on. Perhaps
you’d like to support the Guardian another way?”
Photo source: flicker “The War Logs” by Alex "BuckyBit" Covic
Having acceptable ads
• Adblock Plus introduced the idea of Acceptable Ads. Users
can now opt to block all ads or allow the less-ugly, less-
intrusive ones through.
Photo source: flicker “Hand Shake” by oddbjornbrenden
“We built all these sites
and places for ads to live
but rather than give real
thought to the
landscaping, we just let
everything grow. Now,
everyone is saying,
‘we’ve got kind of a
mess here so we need to
take a step back and
clean things up.’”
-- Jay Lauf, Quartz publisher
Photo source: flicker “Clean Up” by Resha Juhari
IAB introduced its “LEAN” program, to
produce ads that are lighter, less
resource intensive and, hopefully, less
likely to encourage people to install ad
Photo taken by author.
Content marketing has
been proved helpful to
engage readers with ads
by only showing the ads
that people want to
Photo source: flicker “Customer Insights Are Key for More Persuasive Marketing Content” by Keith Hoffart
Other ways to profit
Some non-profit news sites rely heavily on grants and donations; ad
revenue is a smaller piece of the pie. Fashion bloggers need readers to
buy their Etsy wares and click on their affiliate links. Ads are important,
yes, but they aren’t everything.
Photo source: flicker “art at priceless_012” by SharonaGott
 Rosenwald, Michael. “The digital media industry needs to react to ad blockers … or else”. Columbian Journalism Review,
September/October 2015. N.p. Web. Accessed 16 February, 2017.
 Mortished, Carl. "Readers have declared war on publishers." Globe & Mail , 3 July 2015, p. B2. Web. Accessed 16 Feb, 2017.
 Richmond, Holly. “Is Ad-blocking Theft?”. Digital Ethics, 13 October, 2015, N.p. Web. Accessed 16 Feb, 2017.
 Baker, Sam. “Worldwide Digital Advertising 2016-2020”. Juniper Research, 11 May, 2016, N.p. Web. Accessed 16 Feb, 2017.
 Filloux, Frederic. “The Rise of AdBlock Reveals A Serious Problem in the Advertising Ecosystem”. Monday Note, 8 December, 2014, N.p.
Web. Accessed 17 Feb, 2017.
 Bilton, Ricardo. “2016 Year in Preview: Ad blocking will force the industry to put the user experience first”. Digiday, 8 December, 2015, N.p.
Web. Accessed 16 Feb, 2017.
 Matrix, Sidneyeve. “Module 02: Promotional Media”. 24 January, 2017. Presentation.