[:en]Last year British, American, Japanese and Australian publishers lost about $3.2 billion due to excessive ad blocking 

In 2019, British online media lost about £170 million of potential revenue due to an inadequate algorithm for blocking ads on pages with shock content, the Guardian reports.

To avoid the appearance of advertisements next to news or articles about terrorism or murders, advertisers use blocking keywords – “attack”, “death”, “sex”. Ads do not appear on pages where these words are present.

Such measures are dictated by the desire to maintain the brand’s reputation, although sometimes “blacklists” reach four thousand words. As a result, ads do not appear even on pages with relevant content.

“Our best content is sometimes blocked,” says James Wildman, Executive Director of Hearst UK. “If we write about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex (Harry and Meghan), the program will recognize the word “sex” in the article and decide that such content is inappropriate.”

According to the report of the Robert Merrick Business School at the University of Baltimore, last year British, American, Japanese and Australian publishers lost about $3.2 billion due to excessive ad blocking for keywords. About 60% of the blocked pages contained absolutely safe content.

So, in 2019, the Rugby World Cup was the most popular Google request in Britain, but the ads on the corresponding pages were often blocked because the text contained the words “attack”, “injury”, etc. Some articles about the movie “Avengers: Endgame” also were blacklisted because of words “attack” and “kill”.

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