I've been using the "get rid of unwanted ads" feature the past couple of weeks. The linked post says: "If you down vote one, we’ll ask you why, and won’t show you that ad again".

I expected to no longer see an ad as soon as I downvoted it, but that isn't happening. I can downvote an ad, hit another SO page, and see the same ad I just downvoted. Or I may see a rotation through some other ads, but then hit the same ad I downvoted after a few tries.

I think the ads might eventually be disappearing, but can't tell for sure. Is there a delay between clicking the downvote and seeing an ad disappear, or is this feature simply not working for me?


It was my cookie settings. I am running IE9 and using the default "Medium" privacy level for cookie settings, which I assumed would be adequate. It isn't. If I drop the privacy level to "Low" or "Accept all cookies" then ads do disappear as soon as I downvote them. I'd rather not have to use the "Low" or "Accept all cookies" settings browser-wide though, so I added stackoverflow.com to the IE site cookie whitelist (under Tools>Internet Options>Privacy>Sites) to theoretically allow all cookies from SO, but that didn't stop the ads.

Is my only option to use the "Low" or "Accept all cookies" privacy settings?

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    Maybe you've downvoted them all :-). – ben is uǝq backwards Jan 22 '13 at 15:20
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    If you can be specific about the ads you're trying to ignore, that might help in diagnosing this as well. – Shog9 Jan 22 '13 at 15:56
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    @rsw updated answer with domain to white list to enable cookies – Korneel Bouman Jan 22 '13 at 18:28

If you have cookies enabled, the effect should be immediate. The voting system as it exists now is dependent on cookies, so if you are not allowing cookies it won't work. Browsing in incognito or an equivalent will likely provide a similar result. The cookies are served from our ad server. To enable them, white list "adzerk.net".

Note that on subsequent refreshes you should no longer see the ad.

We're regularly evaluating the up/downvote feature looking for new ways to improve it so you all see less of what you don't want and advertisers learn what really drives you all nuts (so they don't do it and not the other way around :-) ). By nature it's a slow process while we work all the kinks out, though, so your patience is greatly appreciated!

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    Additionally, this feature works based on how ads are targeted in our ad server. For example, the same creative can be running site-wide or targeted to specific tags on the site. If you see the ad in the site-wide target and downvote it, it may still show up in the tag-targeted placement. Therefore, you would need to downvote each ad separately. – Danny Miller Jan 22 '13 at 15:58

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