Seventeen major U.S. newspaper publishers issued a cease and desist letter to Brendan Eich, Mozilla co-founder and creator of a new web browser called Brave that features built-in ad-blocking software. The letter, signed by legal representatives from Dow Jones, Gannett, The New York Times Company, Washington Post, and others, called Brave “blatantly illegal” and accused the software of trademark and copyright infringement.
The Brave software operates by blocking and replacing third party ads with its own “safer and faster” ads, and offers to split revenue with publishers, ad partners, and consumers. Eich responded to the letter, stating that Brave does not interfere with first-party publisher content, it merely replaces third-party ads.
Source: The Drum
Hamburg-based publisher Gruner+Jahr announced that recent efforts to limit ad block rates through messaging, content locking, and ad recovery on its sites Geo.de and essen-und-trinken.de have been successful, decreasing ad block usage by 43% and 38%, respectively.
The publisher advocated for user messaging, in particular, citing an experiment on its community site urbia.de, in which it solely employed ad block messaging strategies, resulting in a 27% decrease in the ad blocking rate.
A German court ruled in favor of Adblock Plus after one of Germany’s largest newspapers, Süddeutsche Zeitung, challenged the legality of the ad blocking company’s Acceptable Ads initiative. The court dismissed the newspaper’s argument that Adblock Plus was interfering in a contract readers were entering into with the newspaper that included accepting ads.
Other German media companies have also unsuccessfully challenged Adblock Plus, including publisher Axel Springer, business title Handelsblatt, and broadcaster RTL Interactive.
Source: The Guardian
Departing U.S. Federal Trade commissioner Julie Brill pointed to the failure of the ‘Do Not Track’ initiative and the ad industry’s resistance to doing things the “easy” way as catalysts for increased consumer action in adopting ad blocking.
Brill, who spent six years working on consumer privacy issues, suggested that had there been wider support for ‘Do Not Track’, which was meant to let consumers opt-out of invasive tracking, consumers might not have installed ad blockers for privacy concerns.
Three in four U.S. marketers say ad blocking will have a negative effect on the programmatic advertising ecosystem, according to research by RBC Capital Markets and Advertising Age.
The survey asked 1,960 U.S. marketers what effect ad blocking has on the programmatic advertising space, to which 58% said it has a somewhat negative effect and 20% said it has a significantly negative effect.