Popup blockers – evil tool of anti-establishmentarianism types or simply better browsing?

(Last Updated On: November 21, 2018)

I’ve been accused of several things over the years, nothing too serious I think, but enough random oddness to make me chuckle.

One thing I was recently accused of was being disrespectful to companies that have paid for adverts on websites.

Because I use a popup blocker.

I disagree.

I would not buy anything just by seeing it advertised on a website.  I’m a geek.  I research. I ponder. I spend literally hours checking and double checking if, what I’ve decided to buy, is what I really need.

Sometimes I have to actually stop myself taking too long over things.

Fortunately it’s more of an issue for personal purchases, I can reign it in in a business situation a lot more.  And that’s not to say I rush things, but I can condense the process.

Now I accept that companies have paid for adverts in most cases.  And I also accept that by blocking them I am reducing their effectiveness.

But consider it from my perspective.

My duty is partly to make things run smoothly. To try to help staff work easier, better and with less stuff that puts them off.

I’ve attached two screen grabs to this – one is looking at a website with no blockers, and the other is with an ad blocker running.

The difference is obvious.  And since many of the ads include animation or video content it’s equally as awful to load and browse as it is to look at!

My instincts as a technology guy are interfering with my need to be marketed to.

I occasionally get asked about social media access in the office.  Want to know what I usually say?

You sure?  You probably won’t like it.  (It’ll become a blog post at some point no doubt!)

Block it!  Or restrict access to it outside of core hours.

Unless you’re a company that needs to have its staff accessing stuff like that it’s entirely within your remit to prevent access.  Just as we’d prevent access to other types of content.

If you’ve never known a filtered internet connection before you should ask a teacher what their systems are like!

So ads.  Yes.  I accept the fact it’s often paid for.  But looking at those screengrabs you can see how some sites are littered with them.  And those ads are a drain on resources as well as internet bandwidth, far more than you might think.

I have to use multiple browsers as part of my daily work, this is so I can remain logged in to certain accounts, my time would be impacted so much if I had to log out, log in as someone else, log out, someone else, all day long I think I’d go mad!

So trust me when I tell you that using the wrong browser on the wrong website can literally bring even a brand new PC to a standstill.

And so we must block.

A recommendation?  Sure.  Try uBlock Origin.

It’s a fab little product and it’s totally free.  Even the basic install starts to be effective straight away, no configuration needed.

It’s a true killer app.

But now it’s even starting to protect from malicious code. And that just makes it even better.

So I’m sorry if you feel I disrespect companies by blocking their adverts.  But it’d probably be enough to put me off a supplier based upon how hard they market me.

Do you ever look up companies online?  See any reviews?  Does that put you off?

It’s the little things that stick in our brains that influence our choices.  And since we all have the freedom to choose then that’s up to all of us how we operate.

I’ll keep operating with fewer ads.