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Buckten, January, 12th, 2023

Pro and Cons of Ad blocking software and the upcoming paywall

Dear visitors,

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As an internet user, I can understand everyone's frustration with pop-ups, pop-unders, page load delays, and potential privacy breaches by ad networks. Google Adsense ran here years ago. From month to month the thematic ad targeting deteriorated and instead I was shown local ads from dentists or ads from some commercial offers whose websites I recently visited. This retargeting is possible because Google as a network uses cross-site cookies and collects usage data on the Google servers.

I decided a decade ago, mostly due to the inappropriate ads, to market the ad spaces by myself and randomly display thematically appropriate ads, and remove third-party networks altogether. One of the things I learned was how to use Amazon Web Services to improve page load speed. I am using my own code, I  clearly declare that I neither collect nor forward personal data to advertisers. Personal data includes, for example, which subpage the ad was clicked on, your IP address, your country, and the name of your ISP. I just pass the number of views and number of clicks to the advertisers on a monthly basis, and I think that should be enough.

But since more and more people use Adblock as standard or even prevent the correct recording of general data (views and clicks) with privacy protection, I simply don't earn anything anymore. While websites with purchased news, chemfluencers with bogus paid postings in social media and google search with unblockable ads still benefit, my banner ad business suffers massively. Big advertising customers no longer book the offer because the traffic is already too low.  So I am really thankful if you disable ad blocking software and if you also allow to collect statistical data. Because without statistical data, I am not able to generate money either.

However, because the traffic is very limited and the current offering cannot be refinanced, I possibly need to charge usage fees of around 8 USD/EUR per month once someone uses the site with Adblock. This paywall will maybe be launched soon. If you still want to donate now, you can reduce the amount proportionally or, what would actually be fairer, pay extra for your use in previous years.

Yours sincerely

Reto Mueller

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