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The Ad Blocking Arms Race May Now Be Over

12:00 pm on Apr 17, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The battle between ad blocking software and adversing industry may be over thanks to a researchers at Princeton and Stanford University. For the past few years all we've heard about is ad blockers, and how the ad industry is working to clean up its act so that people are less likely to use ad blocking software. I don't know how far that battle has gone with the vast majority of users, but it may be a long way down the line.

This one may be a game changer.

A team of Princeton and Stanford University researchers has fundamentally reinvented how ad-blocking works, in an attempt to put an end to the advertising versus ad-blocking arms race. The ad blocker they've created is lightweight, evaded anti ad-blocking scripts on 50 out of the 50 websites it was tested on, and can block Facebook ads that were previously unblockable. The Ad Blocking Arms Race May Now Be Over [motherboard.vice.com]

Earlier stories
IAB Lays Out Plans on L.E.A.N. Scoring to Stem the Tide of Ad Blocking [webmasterworld.com]
Report: Ad Blocking is Worth $22 Billion in Lost Revenue [webmasterworld.com]
7:44 pm on Apr 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I used to feel that way. I kept hearing about all the traffic SM had but I never saw much coming my way.

Then I decided I would go get it. I opened accouts at most of the SM sites, read all the developer pages, created the files and proceeded to get back the traffic they were stealing from me.

Make constant posts w/ images that link to articles at your site. Give them a reason to come. Engage your audience. "Like" their posts & comments. Establish trust and develop brand recognition.

Sorry again to go off topic from the thread...

I actually did follow this procedure until recently. I have 51 sites, so I've set up 51 Facebook and Twitter accounts (if for no other reason than to prevent people from pretending to be me). My largest site is the one that I promoted the most, and I have a little over 3,000 Facebook followers.

And keep in mind that my largest site turns 15 years old this year, so I've been around a LOT longer than Facebook or Twitter. For that matter, I predate Friendster! lol

Anyway. I would make a post on Facebook 2-3 times a week (less often on Twitter), pointing to our top threads or "Hot News". But I don't want to encourage discussion about it on social media... I want them to talk about it on MY sites!

Then I started paying attention to the "Reach" value. In January, the weather report called for snow and the local school Board posted on my site about school being delayed. I posted a link to it on Facebook, and as of today that link has been viewed 184 times. So out of 3,000 followers, only 184 of them ever saw the post.

(In comparison, the thread on my site was seen by 184 people in about 15 minutes)

I also did a test run on my personal page, thinking that maybe they were just punishing businesses and trying to make us pay for exposure. So I posted a photo on my personal page, along with the caption of "Please do me a favor, and like this if you see it. I just want to know how many of my friends look at their News Feed". I have about 800 FB "friends", and that post had roughly 70 likes.

The HIGHEST "reach" I've seen was in February 2017, when the county's largest employer announced a major layoff. I posted a link to that on Facebook, and it had several shares. As of today, that post has had a reach of 1,307 people.

But looking at Analytics for that week, we only had 7 "new users" come to the site from Facebook. But we had 517 people share something on Facebook (I don't track what, just a count). So I think it had the opposite affect; people read the headline announcement on Facebook, discussed it on Facebook, and didn't bother to click through to my site to read more or to discuss it.

After seeing that, it's hard to get excited about posting anything. I don't see an uptick in social media acquisitions when I post, and only a small percentage of my followers even see it. Between my "reach" results and the post I made on my personal page, I suspect that the majority of people (at least, in my demographic) rarely look at their News Feed unless they're specifically looking for something.
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