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Business Insider

Ad blocker users have figured out a way to get around Facebook's ad blocker ban

Facebook calls ad blockers a 'blunt instrument' while ad blockers call Facebook's measures 'anti-user'

PUBLISHED : Friday, 12 August, 2016, 1:20am
UPDATED : Friday, 12 August, 2016, 12:29pm

It took just two days for ad blocker users to figure out a workaround to Facebook's move to prevent ad blocking software from working on its desktop website.

Facebook announced Tuesday it had updated its tech to serve ads to all desktop users, even those that have ad blocking software switched on. Simultaneously, the company also updated its ad preferences tool to give users more control about the types of ads they see on the site.

But, for now at least, there's a way for ad blockers to continue to block ads on Facebook.

Popular ad blocker Adblock Plus noted on its blog that a new filter has been added to the popular list most ad blocking extensions use, EasyList. The lists tell the ad blockers which types of ads they should and should not block.

The update includes a piece of code that will tell the ad blocker to continue blocking ads on Facebook.com.

Adblock Plus provides a before-and-after image of what Facebook looks like on desktop with its ad blocker switched on, and without.

Adblock Plus notes that this — like most of the tech interventions in the ongoing battle between online web properties and ad blockers — is likely to be a "cat-and-mouse game." The filter works for now, but chances are it won't be long until Facebook finds another way to prevent ad blockers from working on the site.

A Facebook spokesperson said in a statement: "We're disappointed that ad blocking companies are punishing people on Facebook as these new attempts don't just block ads but also posts from friends and Pages. This isn't a good experience for people and we plan to address the issue. Ad blockers are a blunt instrument, which is why we've instead focused on building tools like Ad Preferences to put control in people's hands."

Earlier this week, Adblock Plus' communications and operations manager Ben Williams declared Facebook's move to serve ads to people who have chosen to block them as "anti-user."

See Also:
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