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Thread: Ad-Blocker Ghostery Just Went Open Source, and Has a New Business Model

  1. #1

    Ad-Blocker Ghostery Just Went Open Source, and Has a New Business Model

    In privacy-focused, anti-establishment corners of the internet, going open source can earn you a certain amount of street cred. It signals that you not only have nothing to hide, but also welcome the rest of the world to help make your project better. For Ghostery though, the company that makes Edward Snowden’s recommended ad blocker, publishing all its code on GitHub Thursday also means clearing up some confusion about its past.

    Before Ghostery was acquired last year by Cliqz, a privacy-focused web browser, the company’s revenue scheme invited some skepticism. Ghostery made money when users opted-in to share data about what kinds of ad trackers they encountered across on the web. Ghostery then sold that data to companies like ecommerce websites, which used it to better understand why, say, their website wasn’t loading very quickly.

    Many of Ghostery’s users struggled to understand the company’s old, complicated business model. And on its face, it just looked like Ghostery was selling user data—precisely what you don’t want from a privacy tool designed to block ads and trackers. “It was never a really great fit for Ghostery the consumer product,” says Jeremy Tillman, Ghostery’s director of product management.

    So along with going open source, Ghostery is also announcing two new, simpler ways it plans to make money. The efforts provide a window into how a user-focused company might survive on the internet without violating customer trust—and borrow a page from publishers and content creators already eager to wean themselves from ad-based revenue.

    The first part of the new business model will be Ghostery Insights, a paid, premium product designed for academics, journalists, researchers, and anyone else curious about the webpage and tracker ecosystem online. It’s not yet available—and not clear yet what analytics will be included—but the company says they expect it to arrive later this year.

    'The problem I think with what Google is doing with their so-called ad blockers, is that it’s really designed to enforce and support their current business model.'

    Jeremy Tillman, Ghostery

    The second part will be Ghostery Rewards, a kind of affiliate marketing system that users can opt into. Designed to be light touch, it will periodically notify you about deals, like a discount on a travel package or a pair of pants. Relevant offers will pop up when you visit say, a travel site or ecommerce platform. In one sense, Ghostery is removing all the ads from the web, and then replacing some of them with its own. But unlike traditional web advertisements, Ghostery Rewards are exclusive to those who use the tool. They’re also meant to be genuinely useful for consumers.

    Ghostery Rewards is similar to the affiliate marketing used by publications like Mashable and Gizmodo Media Group, as well as by independent bloggers. (WIRED also receives affiliate revenue on some linked products.) “It’s 100 percent conversion based,” says Tillman. “That’s pretty much the target goal of the campaign, it’s not impression based, it’s not really for them to build brand awareness.”

    Full article on link.


    I dont use Ghostery. Tried it, didnt like it, messed with too many other settings. It was close to winning me over, but it just didnt.

    For Ad Blocking, Tracker Blocking and decent Script Blocking, I actually recommend UBlock Origin.

    UBlock Origin Plugin for Firefox

    UBlock is NOT an "install and forget" as many plugins are intended to be, which are also not effective at protecting privacy. Thats the price to pay to actually have Privacy. One has to pay a bit of attention to what is being blocked. NOTHING is blocked at first by default. Get used to the interface as you'll be digging around in it quite a lot at first. If you dont, expect to be tracked as no product is perfect, and no product comes without some usage frustrations. The NoScript plugin breaks a lot of websites until you dig into the interface and set it up so sites you use that get broke are allowed to run scripts on.
    1776 > 1984

    The FAILURE of the United States Government to operate and maintain an
    Honest Money System , which frees the ordinary man from the clutches of the money manipulators, is the single largest contributing factor to the World's current Economic Crisis.

    The Elimination of Privacy is the Architecture of Genocide

    Belief, Money, and Violence are the three ways all people are controlled

    Quote Originally Posted by Zippyjuan View Post
    Our central bank is not privately owned.

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  3. #2
    Ad blocking is a violation of the nap.

  4. #3
    Fireprog - ick
    * Enforce Border Security – America should be guarding her own borders and enforcing her own laws instead of policing the world and implementing UN mandates.

    * No Amnesty - The Obama Administration’s endorsement of so-called “Comprehensive Immigration Reform,” granting amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants, will only encourage more law-breaking.

    * Abolish the Welfare State – Taxpayers cannot continue to pay the high costs to sustain this powerful incentive for illegal immigration. As Milton Friedman famously said, you can’t have open borders and a welfare state.

    * End Birthright Citizenship – As long as illegal immigrants know their children born here will be granted U.S. citizenship, we’ll never be able to control our immigration problem.

    Reprinted from [Nov. 29, 2011]

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