Ad Blocking

Posted on 9/18/2015 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (1)

Are you tired of ads for things you absolutely don’t want of need interrupting your favorite news or entertainment TV shows? Almost one-third of every hour is taken up with ads.

Rather than watching TV programs live are you recording them and looking at them later so you can skip the ads?

When you’re trying to read something online do the pop-up ads that are often very difficult to get rid of interrupt your reading and train of thought? To get rid of one recently, I had to close down my computer and re-start it twice. This certainly doesn’t encourage me to go back to that web site.

Are you worried that the delivery of ads online is slowing down your access to information and entertainment, particularly on mobile devices?

Yes, we know that ads pay for a large share of the production of content. Image producer activities are on the content producer side of the business. Thus, they may be more inclined to put up with the inconvenience of the ads, and the time wasted, in order to insure that there is some money out there to pay for our services.

However, the general population that earns its living in other ways may not be so tolerant.

Ad blocking on TV

By 2014 many DVR programs such as Windows Media Center, SageTV and MythTV had the capability to skip commercials segments in recorded TV broadcasts after installing third-party add-ons such as DVRMSToolbox, Comskip and ShowAnalyzer, which use various advanced techniques to locate the commercial segments in the video files and save their locations to text files. The text files can also be fed into programs such as MEncoder or DVRMSToolboxGUI which can delete the commercial segments from the recorded video files.

Digital Ad Blocking

A new report from Adobe shows that 198 million people globally are now blocking digital ads, up 41 percent from 2014. In the US, ad blocking grew 48 percent from last year, to 45 million users. Although the 198 million monthly active users in Q2 2015 represents only 6% of the global internet population, ad blocking is estimated to cost over $21B in 2015, which is 14% of the global ad spend.

Adblock Plus has 50 million users and it forces companies like Google and Microsoft to pay a fee to make sure Adblock doesn't block their ads.

As long as customers are “paying per click” ad blocking may not be costing advertisers any real money, (just reducing the revenue the Internet service provider might have earned), but it does make it more difficult for advertiser to get their message in front of potential customers. Google is already losing 10% of its ad revenue to ad blockers. As a result, the advertisers run the same ads more and more times in more and more places hoping something will stick.

iPhone users who update to the iOS9 operating system can block ads seen through the phone's Safari web browser. Many think Apple’s goal is to make its paid apps more attractive and make it harder for publishers to fund their content production with advertising. Apple makes money when people get their digital stuff from the App Store. It makes almost no money from the web. The appeal is obvious — faster loads, lower data use, fewer annoyances.
This will not be all-out ad blocking on Apple devices. First, the user has to be using Safari on an Apple device. Second, the user has to opt-out of ads. Third, the opt-out process will likely be granular, with individual settings to block specific types of ad formats like pop-ups, pre-rolls, and so forth. Already Germany has a higher rate of blocking than the U.S. and UK. 25% to 30% for gaming sites.

Those who want to better understand how ad blocking is likely to affect the future of publishing may want to listen to Joshua Benton’s interview of Justin Kint, CEO of Digital Content Next on the Nieman Lab website.

Copyright © 2015 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


  • Deric Shengchun Jin Posted Sep 20, 2015

Post Comment

Please log in or create an account to post comments.

Stay Connected

Sign up to receive email notification when new stories are posted.

Follow Us

Free Stuff

Stock Photo Pricing: The Future
In the last two years I have written a lot about stock photo pricing and its downward slide. If you have time over the holidays you may want to review some of these stories as you plan your strategy ...
Read More
Future Of Stock Photography
If you’re a photographer that counts on the licensing of stock images to provide a portion of your annual income the following are a few stories you should read. In the past decade stock photography ...
Read More
Blockchain Stories
The opening session at this year’s CEPIC Congress in Berlin on May 30, 2018 is entitled “Can Blockchain be applied to the Photo Industry?” For those who would like to know more about the existing blo...
Read More
2017 Stories Worth Reviewing
The following are links to some 2017 and early 2018 stories that might be worth reviewing as we move into the new year.
Read More
Stories Related To Stock Photo Pricing
The following are links to stories that deal with stock photo pricing trends. Probably the biggest problem the industry has faced in recent years has been the steady decline in prices for the use of ...
Read More
Stock Photo Prices: The Future
This story is FREE. Feel free to pass it along to anyone interested in licensing their work as stock photography. On October 23rd at the DMLA 2017 Conference in New York there will be a panel discuss...
Read More
Important Stock Photo Industry Issues
Here are links to recent stories that deal with three major issues for the stock photo industry – Revenue Growth Potential, Setting Bottom Line On Pricing and Future Production Sources.
Read More
Recent Stories – Summer 2016
If you’ve been shooting all summer and haven’t had time to keep up with your reading here are links to a few stories you might want to check out as we move into the fall. To begin, be sure to complet...
Read More
Corbis Acquisition by VCG/Getty Images
This story provides links to several stories that relate to the Visual China Group (VCG) acquisition of Corbis and the role Getty Images has been assigned in the transfer of Corbis assets to the Gett...
Read More
Finding The Right Image
Many think search will be solved with better Metadata. While metadata is important, there are limits to how far it can take the customer toward finding the right piece of content. This story provides...
Read More

More from Free Stuff