I have an Acer Aspire One D150 Netbook, and I love the thing. I use it to surf the web, take notes in class, program, read, write, watch videos; it’s a great machine.
But recently, my browser has been slowing down on account of the increasing number of heavy advertisements in the sites I visit. (Particularly flash-based ads.) These ads have gotten so frequent and heavy that they even manage to halt my browser altogether.
This isn’t at all surprising. My netbook, like most of them, has rather weak graphics capability. Added to that, the ads I’m grieved by in particular are the ones involving automatically playing video and flashy transition effects. It’s not hard to see why this sort of thing would slow my computer.
First of all, I think it’s worth appreciating the irony that a machine designed for surfing the net (a *net*-book as they say ) can’t quite accomplish this task. Alas.
The obvious solution to this issue is to install the very-effective Ad Block Plus plugin for Firefox. Bang! No more ads.
However, I haven’t been using this plugin already for minor-ly ethical reasons. Blocking ads on a site feels like a minor act of theft to me. I like finding good content on the web, and consequently I’d like the creators of good content to be supported. I certainly don’t want to sound judgmental of people who use Ad Block Plus. This is just why I haven’t been using Ad Block myself.
The point I’m trying to make here is this:
- Netbooks locking up on account of overweight ads takes the use of Ad Block Plus out of the realm of media-ethics and makes it a matter of usability.
When the online advertisements get too big, no-one wins: I have to be a bad citizen of the internet, the advertisers’ ads aren’t being displayed and content generators don’t receive ad revenue. The Ad Block plugin, then, is a sorry compromise.
(Besides: I’m certainly not going to click on any of the stupid ads anyway.)