On Friday last week German news site Horizont reported that according to its research Google has been “a paying partner to the controversial internet filter” AdBlock Plus, effectively paying Eyeo, the company behind AdBlock Plus to allow the bulk of Google’s ads to slip past the filters that prevent them from being displayed in Chrome and Firefox.
AdBlock Plus is a plugin for Chrome and Firefox that effectively blocks online advertising; however, Eyeo allows ads on smaller sites and blogs that aren’t flashy, animated or intrusive to be added to a whitelist, allowing them to be displayed, under the company’s “Acceptable Ads” initiative.
According to AdBlock’s forum, AdBlock boss Till Faida applied to have Google’s AdSense AdWords added to the whitelist under the Acceptable Ads terms on the 18th of June, 2013, and approved just three days later after a brief discussion involving six forum posters.
Under the category “Additional Technical Information” in the forum post, it is stated that “This will apply to search ads on google.com and sites participating in Google’s AdSense for Search program.” By default, then, all of the ads that would be served to you when performing a search on Google would get through AdBlock Plus’s filters. The only ads that are blocked under these terms are sponsored ads like those seen on YouTube.