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BizReport : Advertising : February 23, 2016


Three's network-wide ad blocking and the IAB's response

Mobile company Three has announced it will introduce ad blocking across both its UK and Italian networks and the Internet Advertising Bureau is not happy about it.

by Helen Leggatt

Mobile company Three is the first major European operator to introduce ad blocking on two of its country networks. Following a deal struck with Israeli firm Shine, ad blocking technology will be implemented across Three's UK and Italian networks. However, it won't stop there with a "rapid roll out" across networks in other countries.

The mobile company said it is not trying to eradicate all mobile advertising but instead wants to give its customer "more control, choice and greater transparency over what they receive" adding that a network-wide ad blocking strategy is better than relying on apps because "it reaches a broader range of mobile ad blocking".

Three has three main reasons for introducing ad blocking. Firstly, their customer already pay data charges and should not have to receive ads, costs which the company says advertisers should be made to pay. Secondly, some advertising elicits customer data and information with them knowing. Finally, customers should not have to suffer having their mobile experience "degraded by excessive, intrusive, unwanted or irrelevant ads" which, says Three UK chief marketing officer Tom Malleschitz, "annoy customers and affect their overall network experience".

However, Europe's trade body for digital marketing, the Internet Advertising Bureau has said that the actions of such across-the-board ad blocking "threatens the Internet as we know it and penalises vulnerable consumers and small companies who depend on ad-funded online services, as well as undermining media diversity and independence in Europe. Moreover, imposition of ad blocking at the network level is at variance of net neutrality and a clear interference in freedom of commerce".



Image via Shutterstock

Tags: ad blocking, Italty, mobile, Three, UK








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