Got an ad blocker on your Mac, iPhone, or iPad? I do. Sorry. I block ads. Since advertising is what makes the world go ’round, I should feel some remorse but if I do, it’s very, very little. Advertising is what keeps the world wide interwebs going these days, but advertising has gone amok. Cray cray, as they say.
What’s the problem? Advertising on the internet provides advertisers with what they never had on traditional media; television, radio, newspapers, and magazines. Traditional advertising never knew exactly who was watching or reading what or when. Online advertisers– Google, I’m looking at you– know that and more.
Advertising on websites has gone from simple little banner ads which offered a small incentive to click, to a gargantuan advertising industry with embedded ads, embedded trackers, cross website trackers and cookies, and more ways to follow you while you traverse the interwebs than you know about.
All that extra time and bandwidth is devoted to advertising, not content. Advertisers don’t like ad blocks but ad blockers eliminate more of that background garbage from being downloaded. How did advertisers and websites respond? More ads. And, worse, a pop up notice that warns you not to use an ad blocker (sometimes begs you not to use an ad blocker), or a notice that bans you from using an ad blocker to view a website.
For NoodleMac, about 30-percent of all my readers use an ad blocker and I’m OK with that. Partly because my site, as with all the Villagers websites, does not use any ad trackers, analytics trackers, or even cookies, and the few ads we have are embedded and mostly visible anyway; even with ad blockers in use.
Here’s a good example of what all those advertising and background trackers do to your browser.
NoodleMac gets a pretty good score on GTMetrix, a website performance testing site. The Google Page Speed score is 100. The Yahoo! YSlow score is 96. Not bad. In the most recent test, the Fully Loaded Time was 6-tenths of a second (almost always less than a second), whereas the average Fully Loaded Time for a typical website is 7.2-seconds.
Why the difference?
Let’s compare those results to an average website, in this case the popular Six Colors by Jason Snell. His website’s Fully Loaded Time is 7.2-seconds which is average. Total Page Size is just under 600k, far less than the average of 3-megabytes. And his site’s total requests came in at 46, again, far less than the average of 88 requests.
Websites with advertising that uses trackers will take much more time to download, and take up much more bandwidth. That’s why advertisers try to block ad blockers. They want those background tracker scripts to work and will block entry if you use an ad blocker. What do those background trackers do? They cull users for information that is compiled into or integrated into their user databases. Google and Facebook do it more than most advertisers, and it’s those background processes which take up the most time and bandwidth while you browse.
NoodleMac has advertising because that’s what makes the world go ’round, but no trackers means faster website page loads and less bandwidth used. Websites that block ad blockers are on the increase, yet we have even more browsers that block ads and trackers. My favorite is the Brave browser which runs on Mac, iPhone, and iPad, and the Trend Micro Zero Browser is a delight for iPhone and iPad users.
I am not opposed to online advertising. I am opposed to incessant advertising stalkers.