What Types of Online Ads Are Acceptable?


We all tend to groan when we see online ads and would rather do without them. However, they can be a necessity for some websites and organizations as they have to earn money in some way to be able to pay for the website. Given that, what types of online ads are acceptable?

So you go to one of your favorite websites, and there are a lot of ads in the site. Some might be in a sidebar, while others might be mixed in throughout the text you’re reading. Then you try to Google for some information and get some ads thrown in there, and then once you click one of the search results, the webpage comes up, but you have to either wade through a countdown to get past the ad, or you have to “Click here” or say “no thank you” to the pop-up to clear it.

And these ads can be for anything. They can be tied to your Google habits so that it’s relevant to you yet also irritating that they know so much about you. They can sometimes end up to be something very distasteful if not X-rated, and other times be something that you just have no interest in whatsoever and not have anything at all to do with the webpage you’re viewing.

Realizing that at least some ads are a necessity, should they only match up in content to what’s on the webpage or is it okay for them to be about something totally random? Should they just be one the side and totally out of your way or is it okay to have pop-up ads to wade through to get to what you’re looking for?

What types of online ads are acceptable?

Laura Tucker Laura Tucker

Laura has spent nearly 20 years writing news, reviews, and op-eds, with more than 10 of those years as an editor as well. She has exclusively used Apple products for the past three decades. In addition to writing and editing at MTE, she also runs the site's sponsored review program.

One comment

  1. What people tend to forget is that I have to pay for the ads as they use quite a lot of bandwidth. Specially those videos.
    I don’t mind ads that much but they limit my use of the internet due to there outrages use of bandwidth due to their outrages numbers.

    If you compare web pages with news papers or magazines you will find that the ads are grouped on pages instead of mixed in into articles. If this sometimes happens the ad always has a relation to the content of the article.
    Just look at this page! 15 ads of which 4 inside the text. The one for a newsletter can be from Make Tech Easier or even be an ad. There is a poll on Linux on Windows. Is that an ad or a real poll?
    There is this SC share bar flowing over the text in the page. can’t get rid of it.

    As I like Make Tech Easier I have chosen to display the ads but sometimes I really think I should hide them again.
    I am really looking forward to google blocking the ads

    All ads that are intrusive should be banned.
    With this I mean:
    – No sound by default
    – do not override the original content in any way and on any device
    – Preferably not in the text (body) part itself as I noticed that large blocks of ads can make you think that the article had ended
    – no more ads than the length of the text. Why? see above.

    All ads should have a maximum size in bytes (preferably very small, see above)

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