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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Should Google Offer Ad Opt-Out Based on Categories or Companies?

Should Google give its users the chance to opt out of specific ad categories? Giannis thinks so, writing (spacing adjusted):

I’ve been so sick of watching the same ads again and again, that I’ve event tried using AdBlock. Great software, but I don’t want to block all of my ads but just the annoying ones!

You would think that by showing the same ad over 20 times in 5 minutes (that’s no exaggeration, I’ve counted them), Google would understand that I’m not going to click it anyway, but that’s asking too much I guess.

I don’t believe that there aren’t any other relevant of useful ads for me to see. Google needs to try harder.

It would be great if I could choose my ads somehow or perhaps block a specific category or vendor.

Every now and then, as webmaster of, I’m getting a mail from users along the lines of “My family won’t ever look at your site again because there’s half-naked sword-yielding ladies seen to the right”. Or, “The game to the left won’t load properly, all I see is the ad banner” (sometimes the Flash-based ads seem to block other stuff). It would be great for the site if users had a button to hide those ads users don’t like (replacing them with perhaps more agreeable ones), or offer users to apply temporary company blocks or so (half a year?). This would also provide Google with statistical info on which ads might be dubious and worth checking again. All I can do in replying to those requests is say that I wish these ads weren’t there, and that I didn’t manually pick them, though that I don’t necessarily even see the same ones from my country... then ask them to tell me the domain, which I can add to my AdSense domain block list.

What do you think?


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